Thursday, October 06, 2011

Thoughts On Steve Jobs

Wow. What can you say about the loss of a visionary who can rightly be compared to Thomas Edison or Leonardo Da Vinci?
Steve Jobs has been on the fringes of my life for something on the order of forty years, from the first Apple computers through the 1984 advertisement, to the LC and the Performa, the iMac, iBook, Powerbook, iPod, iPhone, iPad, and Macbook Pro.
Even if you don't own a single Apple product (and there may be a handful of people who don't in America), you've been heavily influenced by his vision and his goal to put personal computing at the "intersection of art and technology."
He made computing accessible to the average person. He made it popular and possible for you and I.
He remade the world in his image, if you want to make the stretch. Think about what he's changed: music, movies, photography, communication, media, networking (he developed the first home wireless network that meant a damn.) He's overseen computing revolutions, animation revolutions, and communications revolutions. He did it all not by capitulating and adapting to the current standard, but by co-opting the standards and putting his own stamp on them.
He wasn't always successful. Neither was Edison (who had his own scandal, endorsing capital punishment.) Neither was Da Vinci. This is, however, what made all of them great.
Bill Gates is a great businessman, but come on, who talks about Windows innovations, or waits excitedly for the next insanely great thing from Redmond, WA? There is no one, no politician, no athlete, no philanthropist, who has done more to change our world than Steve Jobs. Whether it was a good change or a bad one, only history can judge, and I do not mean to make Jobs out to be a saint.
Just someone with incredible vision and imagination.