Stay hungry. Stay foolish.

One quote has been inspired my life, I did not realized it immediately but when I did, I had to tattoo on my wrist to be visible all the time.

In 2005 during his commencement address at the University of Stanford Steve Jobs made a candid and powerful speech to the graduating students. (For who does not know the Commencement is one of the more venerable – and respectable – traditions of American academia, especially at elite universities such as Stanford and Harvard).

His speech was short (it lasted for 15 minutes which is consider an ideal length of time to deliver a substantive message without putting an audience to sleep!), with a clear theme ”Do what you love” and wrapped 3 lessons in 3 stories (the rules of three: divide a message into 3 parts/stories to make it simple, memorable).

Connecting the dots – love and loss – death: the 3 stories of his life. 

But the end of his speech has been inspiring myself and people for decade and it will continue to do so: ”Stay hungry. Stay foolish”.

Here is final part of his speech:

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

When I was young, there was an amazing publication called The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960s, before personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all made with typewriters, scissors and Polaroid cameras. It was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before Google came along: It was idealistic, and overflowing with neat tools and great notions.

Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: “Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish”.

Thank you all very much.


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