October 5, 2012
Applesauce Special Feature: Here’s To Steve
He was there at the beginning, challenging our notions about what computers were capable of, taking them from the cold and concrete business parks and into the warmth of our homes. He was there when the world realized these machines could be used to bring our youthful dreams to life, creating fantastic and whimsical cartoons which captured the hearts of millions. He was there when the music nearly died at the hands of piracy and money-hungry executives, giving the world a way to enjoy their music as if for the first time, all legally. He challenged the way we saw computers once again, bringing them from our desks to our pockets, wrapping the Internet, music and phone in a stunningly beautiful package, shifting the paradigm and leading the pack once more. He practically created a new market where others had so miserably failed, bringing the same ease of use and functionality from his smartphone to a larger screen, giving teachers a new, exciting way to reach their students, as well as giving artists and business people alike an opportunity to become even more productive in their daily lives.
There are very few aspects of our modern life which Steve Jobs did not directly touch or influence. In his short life, Steve was able to accomplish more than many of us could ever dream, and he did it with a keen eye, an attention to detail and a tenacity which made him a force to be reckoned with.
On today, the first anniversary of his passing, we’ll no doubt read story upon story of things Steve said, things Steve did, and ways he forever changed industries as he made a dent in the universe.
Not everything Steve did was popular, kind or even correct. He had a quick temper in his early days. He refused to acknowledge his first daughter. He robbed some of his hardest working employees out of millions of dollars. Steve made enemies and at times, seemed to do it with flair.
Throughout each of these stories, a common thread will emerge: A sense of familiarity, a sense of knowing.
Because, for all Steve Jobs is famous for, his tyrannical management style, his impeccable taste and refusal to ever give up, the thing Steve is best known for, at least for those of us who never met the guy, is his products, the things he touched. Even the most ardent Apple hater (I know there are more than a few of you out there) is the benefit of Steve’s good work. When Steve expected the best from his people, he also spurred on his competitors to be even better. For years now, companies have been battling it out to release the next iPad or iPhone Killer, and some of these companies have come pretty close, if not creating a product that is right on point with Apple’s. The fact is, before the iPod, the world had Rio and Intel. Before the iPhone, the world had Palm, Nokia and RIM, and before the iPad, the world had several failed attempts by Windows and HP. Safe to say those products which emerged after Apple to compete with them head on are far superior to those products which dominated the market before Apple stepped on the scene.
For those that loved Apple products and have a deep appreciation for Steve, they know all too well just how much he transformed their live. His life, his passion and his words have driven and inspired me to dream big, to follow what my heart knows is good and never waste a day doing something I know won’t ultimately fulfill me or help to change the world.
In the year since Steve’s passing, his name has been thrown around with a flippancy he certainly does not deserve. With every Apple slip up, a certain portion of the tech world reaches into their bag ‘o tricks and pulls out their “This never would have happened with Steve!” card.
While this may sound like a sort of compliment to these people as the words leave their mouths, it’s more an insult to a great and treasured man. Steve spent his life building this company, hand picking individuals with whom he trusted his greatest invention. He gamed the system, so to speak, creating the machine which granted more wishes. To doubt his work, to doubt those he hand picked, to say he never would have allowed “x” and “y” to happen insults the hard working men and women who believes in Steve’s vision as much as he did.
No matter how often these people attempt to trot out the ghost of Steve Jobs as they attempt to make their lame points, his greatness will live on, inspiring generations for years to come.
Here’s to Steve, his passion, and his untiring willingness to be the best and expect the best of those around him.
Here’s to Steve.
Image Credit: Apple