One day at a board meeting, Jobs started berating Smith and other top Pixar executives
for the delay in getting the circuit boards completed for the new version of the Pixar Image Computer.
At the time, NeXT was also very late in completing its own computer boards, and Smith pointed that out:
"Hey, you're even later with your NeXT boards, so quit jumping on us."
Jobs went ballistic, or in Smith's phrase, "totally nonlinear."
When Smith was feeling attacked or confrontational, he tended to lapse into his southwestern accent.
Jobs started parodying it in his sarcastic style.
"It was a bully tactic, and I exploded with everything I had," Smith recalled.
"Before I knew it, we were in each other's faces—about three inches apart—screaming at each other."
Jobs was very possessive about control of the whiteboard during a meeting,
so the burly Smith pushed past him and started writing on it.
"You can't do that!" Jobs shouted.
"What?" responded Smith, "I can't write on your whiteboard? Bullshit."
At that point Jobs stormed out.
Smith eventually resigned to form a new company to make software for digital drawing and image editing.