Steve Jobs' impact on society can be seen everywhere. I am writing this on my Macbook Pro, my husband is doing business on his iPhone and my parents are probably listening to their iPods while driving to work.


These are Jobs' most obvious contributions to society but there was an 11-year period that helped shape Jobs into the man we knew before his death. Journalist Brent Schlender, who covered Apple and the company co-founder for about 25 years, calls the time between 1985 and 1996 the wilderness years, and Schlender recently recovered hours of forgotten interviews with Jobs.


Schlender tells the story of the many interviews he conducted during Jobs' out-of-the-limelight period in an article that appears in the May 2012 issue of Fast Company magazine and on the Fast Company website.


An excerpt from Schlender's article gives us a glimpse into the type of person Jobs was during this transformational period:


"Indeed, what at first glance seems like more wandering for the barefoot hippie who dropped out of Reed College to hitchhike around India, is in truth the equivalent of Steve Jobs attending business school. In other words, he grew. By leaps and bounds. In every aspect of his being. With a little massaging, this middle act could even be the plotline for a Pixar movie. It certainly fits the simple mantra John Lasseter ascribes to all the studio's successes, from 'Toy Story' to 'Up': 'It's gotta be about how the main character changes for the better.'" Source: Fast Company

Read Schlender's entire article, including highlights from the lost tapes, to learn more about Steve Jobs' Wilderness Years: The Lost Steve Jobs Tapes.


Also on MNN: Remembering Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs: Lost interview tapes recovered
A journalist recovers old interview tapes from the Apple CEO's so-called wilderness years when he was out of the public eye.