Steve Jobs may have had newsmen eating out of his hand when presenting iconic Apple products in later life — but he was not always so smooth a media performer, as some old TV footage shows.
Preparing for a 1978 interview, the young Jobs admits he is so nervous he wants to be sick, and is amazed people can see him live on camera — something his iPad will help make an everyday experience three decades later.
“Look at that. Look, I’m on television. Hey,” he says, seeing himself in a monitor as studio assistants prepare him for the live appearance, inserting an earpiece so he can hear the interviewer.
“Isn’t that amazing?” someone asks, to which the bearded Jobs, dressed in distinctly 70s style, enthuses, “Yeah it is.” Told that he was live on screen in New York too, he asks incredulously: “Am I really, are you serious?”
Jobs, who died last Wednesday at 56, became famous in recent years for his presentations of iPods, iPhones and the iPad to rapt audiences at Apple’s California headquarters.
His iconic products, combined with the Internet, have made talking live and on camera commonplace for millions of ordinary people in their everyday lives.
But back then Jobs was having problems just keeping his nerves under control for the interview, according to the footage re-run on CNN in the wake of his death from cancer.
After flustering about whether he can get up and walk about once wired-up for the interview, and before he goes on live, he first asks for a glass of water — and then decides he needs some relief.
“You need to tell me where the restroom is too, ‘cause I’m definitely ill actually, and ready to throw up at any moment,” he says.