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Good, if not very profound
on 8 January 2014
I still remember the frisson of pleasure I felt when I opened the box of my first ever Apple product - an iPod - over a decade ago. It was the first time in my life, I think, that I had ever been impressed by the packaging of something I bought. As this book makes clear, that was no accident: Ive and his colleagues decided to put as much effort into the design of the packaging of the iPod as they did into the product itself.
The Ive who emerges from this book seems a genuinely nice individual, immensely talented and obviously in exactly the right place: the Paul McCartney to Jobs's John Lennon, or vice versa. Its only when you read sequentially through the projects that he's been involved in that you realise what an enormous influence Ive had on modern design, and how positive that influence is.
That said, the book is not particularly profound, and whenever it strays away from subjects the author knows about (essential high tech and design) it rapidly loses its grip. In addition, the fact that Ive did not agree to be interviewed means that it's essentially a - very competent - assembly of interviews that Ive has given elsewhere, and what others have said about him. The author has clearly interviewed everyone he can get his hands on, and the result is, if in the end a bit superficial, a book that any Apple fan will want, and most will read with profit.