Jony Ive Talks Link Between Apple And… Star Wars?

A long time ago, in an operating system not too far away...

While there are plenty of revelations about how Jony Ive’s aesthetic developed in Leander Kahney’s NYT bestselling biography, Apple fans got a unique glimpse into an informative childhood inspiration for Ive this past week thanks to a television appearance on the Charlie Rose show.

Ive and industrial design pal Marc Newson have been making the media rounds recently to promote a charity auction featuring special items customized by the pair.

However, one item in the auction was neither designed nor modified by the pair: a Star Wars Stormtrooper helmet signed by none other than George Lucas.

Why would a Star Wars helmet be featuring in an auction of work by Apple’s industrial design guru?

Star Wars was something both Marc and I grew up watching, and it was really, really informative to our view of the future,” Ive told Charlie Rose this past Friday. “This idea of having the baddies in bright white shiny armor was fantastic,” adding that, “So much of what we do [as designers] is trying to imagine something that doesn’t yet exist.”

While this is only a minor detail in many ways (unless Apple’s big new product launch turns out to be a Retina Display iDeath Star), it’s certainly fun to speculate how the pristine white plastic armor of Star Wars‘ foot soldiers may have helped shape the look of the original iPod, the white iMac, and so on.

Two clips from Ive and Newson’s appearance on Charlie Rose can be seen below:

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  • markymac

    Come on!! You can’t post a wallpaper like that and not share it.

    I need that wallpaper!! Give it up!!

  • gcurtisjr

    It’s from a 2011 Cult of Mac article. The hi-res wallpaper is included: http://www.cultofmac.com/100959/

About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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