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Bio: Steve Jobs was a details man, even in his Memphis hospital bed

In Walter Isaacson’s biography of Apple CEO Steve Jobs that went on sale Monday, there’s some fascinating detail about Jobs’ stay in Memphis during 2009, when he got a liver transplant at Methodist University Hospital’s transplant institute.

Jobs, who died earlier this month at age 56, was ever the details man, even in his hospital bed.

There’s a moment in the book’s recounting of Jobs’ transplant when Jobs pulled off an oxygen mask, grumbled about the design and ordered someone to bring him five different choices of masks. He said he’d pick the one he liked.

Same for the oxygen monitor on his finger.

“He told them it was ugly and too complex,” Isaacson writes of the monitor. “He suggested ways it could be designed more simply.”

Jobs also got visitors in Memphis from Apple – including Tim Cook, the man who took his place as CEO.

“You could see him brighten every time the talk turned to Apple,” Cook told Isaacson. “It was like the light turned on.”

The two men in Memphis discussed a new model of the iPhone, including what to call it – the iPhone 3GS – and the size and font of the letters in the name.

Jobs friend George Riley, who did some of the work associated with preparing the Memphis visit, is described as a San Francisco lawyer who sometimes worked as outside counsel for Apple. According to the bio, Riley’s parents had been doctors at Methodist,

Riley was born there and he was a friend of James Eason, the director there who performed Jobs’ transplant.

Dansette

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