Once, at a family gathering, my nephew the IT dude told me that he would not hire me, because I am not technologically proficient. He is a Microsoft guy, and I am a Mac user. Thankful that I wasn’t looking for a job, I just smiled and changed the subject.
Steve Jobs, co-founder and visionary at Apple, has been behind so many technical devices and concepts that I and countless others use every day. My nephew was right— I live and work in a technologically sophisticated world, with little understanding of exactly how all of this stuff functions. Mr. Jobs and company created the devices, the software, and the slick interfaces that have made it just as easy to operate computers, music players, smart phones, and other items without being able to crawl under the hood and fix them. Just as I drive my Honda, without knowing its valve clearances and final drive ratio, I can create a web page, edit a movie, or share music without understanding the inner workings of my iPad, Mac, or Airport Express. The beauty of all things Apple is that they operate intuitively, with no need to read the manual or hire a member of the Geek Squad.
During his career, Steve Jobs has repeatedly been able to see what people wanted, then create devices that did those things. Moreover, his company went beyond that, and created hardware and apps which I didn’t even know I wanted— until I saw them in action.
I am saddened that his family lost him at such an early age, 56, and I am also sorry that his passionate vision has been cut short. Just today, Apple announced the introduction of software that lets customers verbally interface with the newest iPhone, a technology that promises to change everything, one more time. And in Apple stores across the globe, customers are seeing this new feature, and thinking, what will they think of next?
Ironically, a more important question might be who will think of these new things, now that the “insanely great” Steve Jobs is no longer with us?