Rare Steve Jobs videos now onlineMay 11, 2010: 7:58 AM ET
All Things Digital posts interviews with Apple's CEO from 2003 and 2004
Beyond his keynotes at Apple (AAPL) events, Steve Jobs doesn't make a lot of public appearances. Since 2003, however, he's made an exception for All Things D, the annual invitation-only confab produced by Wall Street Journal veterans Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher.
He missed D6 (2008) and D7 (2009), but he'll be back June 1 to kick off D8. And to help build buzz for that event, Swisher is posting videos of his past appearances at the conference, starting last week with D1 and on Monday with D2.
The footage is interesting on several levels -- not the least of which is how much his appearance changes from year to year. You also get to see with the benefit of hindsight how Jobs uses a wide variety of rhetorical devices -- evasion, misdirection, handwaving, silence -- to keep his interviewer and his competitors guessing about Apple's future plans. (He's particularly evasive on the subject of cellphones and tablets. He predicts in 2003 that Microsoft's tablet will fail, and when asked point blank if Apple planned to build one, he replies: "No plans at the current time to make a tablet.")
But mostly these videos are a chance to see Jobs at his most charming: quick, funny, acerbic, and really smart about what consumers are ready for and what Apple brings to the party.
[Follow Philip Elmer-DeWitt on Twitter @philiped]