We took the news of Steve Jobs resignation almost like the loss of a family member. After all, we are surrounded by his children; little iPod, always with a song in its heart, iPhone, the adolescent terror looking for the latest app, chatty as a hen house and iPad, fully grown, sleek, daring the world to fill it with its collective soul and wisdom. How much richer we are for his begetting the world these wonderful gadgets is hard to quantify at this time because their impact is still evolving. Ten years ago the world didn’t know it needed such things, but Steve Jobs did. That’s what’s meant by genius.
In hindsight, the motivating animus of his career is clear. He wanted to move the computer from a clunky box that sits on a desk into the world where it could work side by side with us in such a way that we would cease to think of it as a tool. That he succeeded is a triumph of technology and design.
Of course, we love technology, but we really love design. Dating back to the Macintosh, with its icon driven GUI, design has always been the foundation of Job’s vision. There are stories of him halting products after manufacturing had commenced in order to change a finish or a surface texture. That’s not cheap, friends. The only other innovator who comes to mind with an attention to detail so fanatic that it would compel them to scrap something already produced and redesign it is Walt Disney. Not surprisingly, the two men are highly complementary. Disney was the first to extend a brand across numerous platforms (movies, theme parks, television) and Jobs created numerous platforms to enable all of us to extend our brands like Walt. Way to go, guys.
Good job, Steve.