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Pirates of Silicon Valley Paper Essay

Computers, it’s what our world revolves around now both inside and outside of the classroom. Has one ever wondering who created this gadget? Where did this computer come from? These questions are answered in the movie Pirates of the Silicon Valley. The movie Pirates of Silicon Valley portrays how Steve Jobs and Apple got started and how Bill Gates and Microsoft got started. The movie is told through the viewpoint from people that worked with both Steve Jobs and Bill Gates. The documentary shows how both Steve Jobs and Bill Gates struggled through college and how they started both Apple and Microsoft.

Throughout the movie, there were numerous instances of unethical behavior. Business ethics are the moral principles that guide the way that a business and an individual working for that business behave. To act in an ethical manner, one has to determine the differences between right and wrong. Steve Jobs was a very intelligent man who invented the personal computer and changed the world. However as a human being and a businessman he was a mess of a man. He was verbally abusive to his employees, he refused to admit that he had a daughter, refused to give child support to his ex-girlfriend and tore down all of the people that worked for and around him. Eventually his employees began to hate him. Steve’s attitude got so out of control his best friend quit on him and he ended up being fired from his own company. Nobody wants to work for an arrogant employer. Compared to Steve Jobs, Bill Gates has excellent management skills.

Steve Jobs compromised his ethics, in the beginning of the movie Steve was a laid back individual when they were working in the garage. He did things for fun and had no other purpose in his mind. When he made the blue boxed he wasn’t focused on money, however when Apple began to expand, Steve Jobs changed. He turned in to the person that was needed to run apple. He started treating his employees differently and Woz even noticed the change from when they were working out of a garage. Looking at Bill Gates, he basically stole the Windows operating system from Apple. He lied to IBM and Steve Jobs to make it look like he had a product with DOS, but DOS didn’t really exist. Stealing other people’s ideas and intellectual property is frowned upon; it’s amazing that he got away with it. However, on the reverse side of the spectrum, the movie depicts that Jobs and Gates used piracy to copy each other’s products. I partially disagree, technology is advanced by copying and modifying the previous technology of products.

Whoever finds the opportunity to grow their business by taking advantage of the old products to create a new and better product will be the winner. That being said, business is cruel, it’s how the real world works. Apple and Microsoft had different management styles. Being top management not only means fancy cars and women, but also it means one has the responsibility of making crucial decisions that could affect them or other people in the company. Both Steve Jobs and Bill Gates seemed unconcerned in this area when making business decisions. Sure money was a very important issue concerning both Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, but the gray ethical area of piracy is how they accomplished it. Jobs copied Xerox’s GUI. Top management is a game of who gets lucky and who won’t, who can do things that are necessary to get done and who can’t, and who can be a top manager and who shouldn’t.

Apple and Microsoft’s CEOs had different leadership styles. Steve Jobs had a very strong personality, which let me sell his products with Steve Wozniak. Steve saw things differently from what other people saw, with his insight and charisma he made Apple very successful. Bill Gates was smart with his decision-making. He led his staff to the end goal with kindness and encouragement along the way. He made everything clear to his partners on what his plan was and how he was going to accomplish his idea and plans.

In conclusion, I feel that it would be very difficult to work for either company, Apple or Microsoft. Higher management seemed very disorganized and temperaments were out of control. I could not see myself working for a company where unethical practices are going on and yet nobody did anything about it. Granted each company changed the way people operate today I could not foresee myself working for either company in the era of the setting of the movie.


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