But he still had his spirit and charisma.
There were plenty of field trips, visits by akido masters, and off-site retreats.
And he still exuded the pirate flag spunkiness.
When Apple fired Chiat/Day, the ad firm that had done the "1984" ad and taken out the newspaper ad saying "Welcome IBM--seriously,"
Jobs took out a full-page ad in the Wall Street Journal proclaiming, "Congratulations Chiat/Day--Seriously.
Because I can guarantee you: there is life after Apple."
Perhaps the greatest similarity to his days at Apple was that Jobs brought with him his reality distortion field.
It was on display at the company's first retreat at Pebble Beach in late 1985.
There Jobs pronounced that the first NeXT computer would be shipped in just eighteen months.
It was already clear that this date was impossible,
but he blew off a suggestion from one engineer that they be realistic and plan on shipping in 1988.
"If we do that, the world isn't standing still, the technology window passes us by,
and all the work we've done we have to throw down the toilet," he argued.