Introduction by Walter Isaacson

Smart people are a dime a dozen and often don’t amount to much. What counts is being creative and imaginative. That’s what makes someone a true innovator. And that’s why my answer to the question is Jeff Bezos. (Location 80)

So, what are the ingredients of creativity and imagination, and what makes me think that Bezos belongs in the same league as my other subjects? (Location 81)

The first is to be curious, passionately curious. (Location 83)

A second key trait is to love and to connect the arts and sciences. (Location 90)

Another characteristic of truly innovative and creative people is that they have a reality-distortion field, a phrase that was used about Steve Jobs and comes from a Star Trek episode in which aliens create an entire new world through sheer mental force. (Location 103)

Related to that is the ability to “think different,” as Jobs put it in a memorable set of Apple ads. (Location 107)

One final trait shared by all my subjects is that they retained a childlike sense of wonder. (Location 114)

That trifecta—humanities, technology, business—is what has made him one of our era’s most successful and influential innovators. (Location 126)