Jean-Louis Gasse

In the Apple there was never a shortage of colorful and eccentric personalities, but Jean-Louis Gasse stood out even against this background.

Commit this deed by someone else, he wouldn’t ever wash off. Another thought would be, at least, a traitor. But Jean-Louis is a difference. He could not do otherwise.

Steve jobs was preparing a corporate coup. Scully went to China for talks with the government of the people’s Republic of China, who were interested in Apple products. His absence, Steve wanted to use for their own purposes, he needed help and he asked for her to Jean-Louis.

Most likely, Steve is still nothing would come out, but if the information is leaked outside the company (and it always leaked), Apple’s reputation would be severely damaged. Jean-Louis immediately got in touch with John Scully and…

Told him about the plans of the jobs. Jean-Louis was very concerned for Apple. Sculley canceled his trip and the coup attempt was over before it began. Jean-Louis went down in history, even if nothing else has done in my life.

Apple’s reputation was saved. But I would not judge Jean-Louis too harshly. What would have done in his place you? If the coup was successful, and Steve topped Apple in 1985, for the company, all would have ended quickly and badly. Almost with a guarantee.


Jean-Louis is a year younger than Michael Spindler was born in 1944 in occupied Paris. In 1981 he was invited for the post of Director of operations for Apple in Europe. He was famous in computer circles as the man returned to the life of your local Data General.

In 1981, Apple Computer was a very young and inexperienced company, only that company can open a representative office outside the U.S. with no idea of how to transfer the salaries of employees in another country.

Jean-Louis and 25 employees of the “European operations division Apple” almost worked “for free”. For the idea. It turns out that the Apple II in France already knew and loved. Soon problems with the money transfer was successfully resolved, but the situation long remembered, considering her an amusing curiosity.

At the end 1981, instead of money, Jean-Louis received a salary increase (which failed to translate to France) and another post – now he was a head of Apple France. By 1984, Apple France became the most successful branch of Apple outside the United States, in terms of sales and profits.

John Scully, during a visit to Paris, invited Jean-Louis to move to the main office of Apple in Cupertino, in the marketing Department. The… agreed. And moved to the United States. And even took American citizenship.

After a failed attempt of a coup undertaken by Steve jobs, John sculley appointed Jean-Louis to lead the development of Macs and their operating system. Earlier this position was held by Steve. The post purchased by the betrayal?

With Jean-Louis as Steve, was your Outlook on life and their idea of what and how to do it – and they both fearlessly and stubbornly defended their point of view.

Jean-Louis was eccentric and funny, but sycophants he never was.

He loved Apple Computer, and was happy to be one of the leaders of the company.

The head of the Macintosh platform

The head is inflated a serious gentleman who is about to burst from the overflowing of his Majesty and authority. Yes?

And here and there. Jean-Louis was not afraid to seem ridiculous. He easily communicated with a simple staff, loved dirty jokes, and fought with superiors for subordinates, confident that a satisfied employee is a successful employee.

It apparently is the only such period in the history of Apple salaries in Mac native office exceeded the average in the industry. Every two or three weeks, the company paid for the hotel on the Pacific coast with great food (usually French), and all direction, led by Jean-Louis, went there for the weekend. Together with their wives, husbands and children. Beach, beach volleyball, evening with excellent wine and dancing.

Submission of Jean-Louis on what should be the Mac were different than the jobs.

Jean-Louis was open and Mac, in his opinion, should be the same, that is, open for extensions and upgrades. His first design, the Macintosh Plus, was greeted by the market with enthusiasm. The Macintosh II was more expandable.

Sometimes, the fireplace and a glass of wine, discussed important issues of the development platform, for example, decisions about strategy of development of the operating system.

Designed by Jean-Louis in 1989, the Macintosh Portable, which is dubbed the Macintosh-not-so-Portable, is considered a failure. Its sales really were not very good, but I had such a computer – except for the weight (under 10 pounds I think) and quickly fading screen, other disadvantages I did not notice it. Dragged him to his country house, where electricity often was not, I programmed it by candlelight.

His heavy batteries honestly aged 10-11 hours of battery life, and more than one year. And it is this Mac used coming FBI agent in twin Peaks, with a very clever…

In 1990, despite the failure of the Macintosh Portable, Jean-Louis was intended for the post of head of Apple. I’m not sure it would be the right decision, if you talk in the abstract, but if you take into account who was the only other candidate on this post (Michael Spindler), and if I could influence the situation, knowing what happened then I would have had both hands in Jean-Louis.

In order to create programmers and developers to iron a unique environment for work, needed the money. Research and development in General are expensive, and the products meet the quality standards established and supported by Jean-Louis (all the rest of the guide as liked, but the cost of it – no) is even more expensive.

Therefore, Jean-Louis did everything to repeatedly push the exorbitant price of a Mac and selling them two times more expensive than their cost. Investing in Mac’s soul and achieving the maximum possible.

He managed to hack to death is on the rise project cheap computer Drama, similar to Wt, but with disabilities. In his opinion, any buyer of Apple products expects the company’s full range of features and high quality, and deviations of the company from its principles buyers will not understand.

By the way, after the departure of Jean-Louis Gasse of Apple trying to stamp, for cheap, very cheap modification Performa, and in fact did not end well. These cheap “fake Mac” stuck dead weight in the company’s warehouse and was never sold.

Director of worldwide marketing

In 1988, still leading the development of new models of Macs (just then and developed the ill-fated heavy Not-so-Portable), Jean-Louis became Director of worldwide marketing.

Today, a similar position called the “senior Vice President of worldwide marketing”, it is Phil Schiller.

In 1988, in our days, this position is considered to be one of the highest in the company.

Along with Steve Sekamana, Jean-Louis initiated the project, turned later in the Newton MessagePad, and was fascinated by the processor from AT&T, is optimized for code written in C and C++, “hobbits”.

The story of the “hobbits” in the fate of Jean-Louis continued. But more about that in the next part.

And yet, Jean-Louis was too eccentric, and where it would lead Apple is a difficult question. Apple developed their own processors, highly specialized and not too complicated. After talking with the developers of processors on AT&T (the creators of “the hobbit”), Jean-Louis came up with the idea to deploy to Apple producing its own processors.

Having clarified. this is a complicated matter, requiring enormous computational resources, he was knocked out of leadership money for the purchase of a Cray supercomputer.

Cost of this “toy” is mind-blowing amount. For some reason, Jean-Louis hid from Scully and the Board of Directors the true reason for the acquisition of a supercomputer. He said that Cray need for designers of computer cases, to calculate their internal thermodynamics.

With its own chips didn’t work out (who would doubt), and Cray actually used to calculate the thermodynamics inside the buildings.

To be continued.

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