Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Steve Jobs: Rest Different

By now I'm sure you've heard that Steve Jobs died today.

Not many people really understood what Steve Jobs did for this world, and how he did it. They think it has to do only with Apple, and Macintosh and iPhone. They think Mac fans overlooked his flaws in adoration of his cool products.

But that ain't it.

You have to look at his flaws to understand how much more he did than foster the invention of the iPhone. It's the stuff he did that people hate which has brought us to where we are. It was in the fact that he not only built his company (and a few others) but that he saw what he wanted for the world, and he had the arrogance to make the world follow.

Somebody else invented WYSIWYG, and computer mice, and telecommunications, and the web and MPEG-4 and MP3 and even the iPod. The raw material, the inventions, all of it were out there. Jobs saw the potential, and it wasn't enough for him to just move his own company forward. He forced the hand of his competitors again and again.

Even those who refuse to ever touch an Apple product have benefited from this. It's why we have Windows and Android and other kinds of mp3 players in the advanced state they are in. Heck, it's why we have Kindle and Nook.

So I'll just end with the quote from Apple's "Think Different" campaign, becuase I think it's really suitable as a eulogy:

"Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The trouble-makers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They're not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status-quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify, or vilify them. But the only thing you can't do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do."

Steve Jobs never doubted he could change the world, and by golly he did.

See you in the funny papers.

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