This did not please Amelio.
Apple's chief technology officer, Ellen Hancock, argued for going with Sun's UNIX-based Solaris operating system,
even though it did not yet have a friendly user interface.
Amelio began to favor using, of all things, Microsoft's Windows NT,
which he felt could be rejiggered on the surface to look and feel just like a Mac
while being compatible with the wide range of software available to Windows users.
Bill Gates, eager to make a deal, began personally calling Amelio. There was, of course, one other option.
Two years earlier Macworld magazine columnist (and former Apple software evangelist) Guy Kawasaki
had published a parody press release joking that Apple was buying NeXT and making Jobs its CEO.
In the spoof Mike Markkula asked Jobs, "Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling UNIX with a sugarcoating, or change the world?"
Jobs responded, "Because I'm now a father, I needed a steadier source of income."
The release noted that "because of his experience at Next, he is expected to bring a newfound sense of humility back to Apple."
It also quoted Bill Gates as saying there would now be more innovations from Jobs that Microsoft could copy.
Everything in the press release was meant as a joke, of course.
But reality has an odd habit of catching up with satire.