i figured out a way to read books at my desk without feeling like a complete corporate slacker: read books published by my monolithic corporate parent! today a gorgeous, gratis copy of walter isaacson’s new einstein biography arrived courtesy of my contact in the publishing group. i can’t wait to dig in. what i love about big al is that he was a complete human being. he didn’t say “i am a scientist, i only do science.” he was involved in all kinds of humanistic thinking, investigation, and action.
Amazon.com: At Time and CNN and the Aspen Institute, you’ve worked with many of the leading thinkers and leaders of the day. Now that you’ve had the chance to get to know Einstein so well, did he remind you of anyone from our day who shares at least some of his remarkable qualities?
Isaacson: There are many creative scientists, most notably Stephen Hawking, who wrote the essay on Einstein as “Person of the Century” when I was editor of Time. In the world of technology, Steve Jobs has the same creative imagination and ability to think differently that distinguished Einstein, and Bill Gates has the same intellectual intensity. I wish I knew politicians who had the creativity and human instincts of Einstein, or for that matter the wise feel for our common values of Benjamin Franklin.