During what I like to call “blog week” at M/C/C, we toss around blog topics and ideas with one another. I originally thought I’d write about Apple’s PR strategy for the “Let’s talk iPhone” event, but the death of Apple’s co-founder, Steve Jobs, sparked a new idea. An idea about Jobs’ ideas and the mark it left on my ideas. Got that?
I know that every industry leader, technology blogger and Apple enthusiast is writing about Jobs right now. It’s not an understatement to say that he influenced many. In fact, if you look around, his life’s work can be seen in the hands, pockets and backpacks of millions of people.
Jobs made the computer accessible and easy to use. I’m proud to say that I learned to type on a Macintosh computer. I remember it clearly because it was bright teal, and it had a unique layout– both exciting things for a computer-shy third grader! I also thought the black and white spinning wheel was much cooler than the PC’s dreaded hourglass. Since then, I’ve had an array of pleasant run-ins with Apple products.
During college I spent many late nights working on a Mac. It was home to my honor’s thesis and design portfolio. In fact, I didn’t dread a long paper or design project as long as I could work from a Mac computer. Its seamless design and simple interface allowed InDesign and Photoshop to run for hours without a glitch. Tedious afternoons spent editing, designing and writing quickly turned from yawn-inducing events to fun-filled experiences. Did I mention its easy-on-the-eyes 21-inch computer screen?
I promise I’m not giving Jobs and his products more glory than they deserve! In fact, Guy Kawasaki, the social media expert and a close friend of Steve Jobs, said that Jobs viewed building Apple products as a religious experience. He wanted his products to change the way the world used computers.
Kawasaki was slated to deliver the opening keynote of the Social Media Examiner’s Facebook Success Summit just minutes after the announcement of Jobs passing was made. Instead, he used his time to reflect on the man behind Apple. Kawasaki remembers Jobs focusing on young people, specifically college students. Jobs saw it as the perfect setting to premiere his iMac computer. In 1984 he fulfilled this dream and premiered his iMac computer at De Anza community college in San Francisco, Calif. They were the first people to hear Jobs’ utter his now celebrated line, “one more thing.” Well, I don’t know if he really said that, but on that day he transformed the desktop computer from a boring box used for typing to a creative and inspiring launching pad for graphic design and artistic work… and he never looked back.
Since then, Jobs has birthed the industry-changing iPod, revolutionized the smartphone industry and produced the ever-popular iPad propelling tablets into the mainstream. Today, millions of people own Apple products. It’s almost become a way of life. If you stop to think about it, how do you listen to music when you’re on-the-go? An iPod. Duh. No other portable music player can boast the type of sales figures the iPod has garnered. Ten years later, and it’s still the number one music portable player!
Kawasaki summed it up best when he said, “Some people are lucky enough to create one revolution; Steve Jobs arguably created four or five.”
So, Mr. Jobs, I want to thank you for the memorable experiences you’ve provided me and the rest of the world. You gave us products that inspire us, engage us and challenge our creative abilities. From an all-in-one desktop computer to the iPhone, you’ve brought the world to our fingertips, and it will never be the same without you.