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Don Melton on Steve Jobs and other news from April 10, 2014


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Former Apple engineer Don Melton posted a heartwarming and fascinating post late on Thursday highlighting his memories of working with Steve Jobs. The entire post is well worth reading in its entirety as it provides a more up-close and personal glimpse into a side of Jobs that doesn't often get a lot of ink.

The post is packed with a number of interesting stories regarding the development of Safari (the team at Apple Melton worked on) along with a few memorable anecdotes detailing Jobs' kindness, his sense of humor, and of course, his uncompromising pursuit of excellence.

One quick story with sharing is how the idea of putting Safari's URL progress bar into the browser's URL address view came about:

Steve didn't like the status bar and didn't see the need for it. "Who looks at URLs when you hover your mouse over a link?" He thought it was just too geeky.

Fortunately, Scott and I convinced Steve to keep the status bar as an option, not visible by default. But that meant we had a new problem. Where should we put the progress bar to indicate how much of the page was left to load?

Before, the progress bar lived inside the status bar. So we needed to find it a new home. We discussed all sorts of silly ideas including making it vertical along the edge of the window.


The room got quiet. Steve and I sat side-by-side in front of the demo machine staring at Safari. Suddenly we turned to each other and said at the same time, "In the page address field!"

Smiles all around. Which I followed with, "I'll have a working version of that for you by the end of the week." Over-committing my engineering team, of course.

But I didn't care. I had just invented something with the Big Guy. True, it was a trifle, but there's no feeling like sharing even a tiny byline with Steve.

Again, the entire post is a must-read for anyone with even a passing interest in one of the tech industry's all-time great visionaries.

Other quick hits from Thursday includes:

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