Steve Jobs said "Our hardware team got to cranking out a new Mac with Intel processors every month".

See his video

I think he wanted to say "....had to crank out..."

have to (modal verb) (also have got to) used to show that you must do something. E.g: Sorry, I've got to go.

but why not "got to crank out " but "got to cranking out" ?

"have to doing something" is not right?

  • 1
    No, he said exactly what he wanted to say. It's idiomatic English. "Got to [VERB]ing" here means "eventually progressed to the point of habitually [VERB]ing". It has nothing to do with the modal have to. – P. E. Dant Reinstate Monica Jul 13 '17 at 7:04
  • @P.E.Dant, show me the evidence of idiom of "Got to Ving" – Tom Jul 13 '17 at 7:15
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    See the Free Dictionary entry for get to, which tells you: "2. Begin doing something or start to deal with something. For example, We got to reminiscing about college days, or Let's get to this business right now. [Mid-1800s]". You will find many similar entries if you consult English language dictionaries for this very common usage. (Also, you might consult the English dictionary of your choice for a definition of the English adjective "polite".) – P. E. Dant Reinstate Monica Jul 13 '17 at 7:52
  • @Tom: google.com/… – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jul 13 '17 at 9:32
  • Also, Tom, Steve J is describing a past event, not a present obligation, and we don't use got to (in the sense of "must") with the past; it expresses the idea of present obligation (extending into the future). Sorry, I gotta go, Sorry, I've got to go. I must leave now. I've gotta go to the DMV tomorrow., I have got to go to the DMV tomorrow. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jul 13 '17 at 9:37

It might be more understandable this way:

Our hardware team got around to cranking out a new Mac with Intel processors every month.

Meaning that the time finally arrived when they could take the actions described. See around:

1g. adverb
in succession or sequence - his turn came around

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