This past Tuesday, Apple released another set of quarterly financial results that were well beyond what any other technology company is achieving right now. It's become a running joke amongst those who watch the company that Apple is literally incapable of doing anything else and we have run out of superlatives to describe the company's profits, sales, and influence.


Naturally, everybody wants to know how Apple does it. Surely there must be some secret formula, some magic insight, some insanely great philosophy driving the company. Enter Ken Segall's well-timed book, Insanely Simple: The Obsession That Drives Apple's Success, which purports to provide the answer. Segall is actually well-equipped to explain Apple's inner workings, having spent twelve years working closely with Steve Jobs both at Apple and at NeXT and having worked on some of Apple's most important ad campaigns and iconic products.

Insanely Simple is a business book, fitting into a genre that's dominated by self-help management titles like Who Moved My Cheese and Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. As such, it's good to understand that, like any genre, there are certain conventions it adheres to. In the main, these books choose a schema though which to explain the world, tell some anecdotes that can be interpreted with it, and do it all with a motivational tone. For better or worse, Segall excels at all three. He chose a schema and sticks with it with dogged tenacity. Luckily, he has a rich history of Apple anecdotes from the naming of the iMac (the MacMan, seriously) to the nitty gritty back-and-forth behind the creation of the "Think Different" branding campaign.