What Have You Done Thats So Great?
The world of technology will be drowning in tears today. Steven P. Jobs died after a long battle with pancreatic cancer just a day after the fifth version of the iPhone was announced. The geek in me is mourning the death of, in my humble opinion, the most creative innovator in the world of computing who has ever walked the earth. From iMacs to MacBooks, Pixar to the iPod, iTunes to the iPhone and most recently the iPad, the man has pushed computer technology from being a mirage to being handheld, to being personal, to being everywhere. To a point where just minutes after his death, Apple fans decided October 14 - the day the iPhone 4s hits the market- will be marked as Steve Jobs day. That shows you just how much this man endeared himself to tech-lovers the world over.
He is the man who once asked a critic a question that I think best summarizes him as a person. And that is what I will focus my post on. It was not a famous reporter at a huge press conference. It was Gawker Blogger, Ryan Tite, who was engaging Jobs on email about Apple's policies and freedom. Jobs was the kind of CEO - may be the only CEO of his calibre - that directly engaged ordinary every-day people on email on several occasions. At first, Jobs did not even know Ryan Tite was a popular technology blogger on Gawker. He learnt that somewhere along the email conversation that spanned a number of email exchanges. And while Ryan was losing his cool in several parts of the conversation, Steve remained cool, composed and sought to explain his point of view to Ryan - though he took a thoroughly deserved jab at him at the very end of the conversation.
Ryan was critical about the kind of power Apple weilded by closing out Apple products and he was especially irked by an advert terming the iPad as a revolution. And after the now famous and heated email exchange between the two, Jobs asked Ryan, "By the way what have you done that's so great? Do you create anything or just criticize others work and belittle their motivations?"
And I think that question very much summarizes it. So lets ask the question. What did Steve Jobs do that was so great? Well, Steve Jobs knew what he had achieved would change the world forever. Almost every single piece of computer technology today has influence from Apple in one way or the other. His products have changed the world of computing and those who have seen the sneak peak of Windows 8 can see the clear influence Apple products have had even on their arch Nemesis, Microsoft. From iMacs to Macbooks, to his revolutionary operating systems that gave birth to the now famous line - When you go Mac, you never go back. He pushed microsoft to the edge and the most innovative products Microsoft ever made have been to counter Steve Jobs innovations. He made better. faster, cuter and much safer systems that ultimately made the world stop and stare. And as one twitter user said, he is the closest the world will ever get to Tony Stark - the fictitious character from the Marvel Comic hit movie, Iron Man.
He changed the way animations are made through Pixar and he revolutionized music through the iPod and iTunes. He also changed the way phone are made through his innovative iPhone smartphone designs that saw phones depart from physical keypads to touch keypads. He also introduced the iPad and for all other similar products in the market right now, the innovative idea belongs to him and his genius mind.
The world has truly lost a technological genius, an innovation giant and a revolutionary mind. A person who refused to look at what existed as his motivation but chose to do that which had not been done before. He was a man that pushed the limits of creativity and changed the world of technology forever. And being a person with a deep passion for graphics, I dont want to imagine how life without Mac would be like thanks to the creative genius, pioneer and innovator of Steve Jobs.
He may be gone but his innovative work is immortalized on office desks, college hostels, institutions, bags, pockets and even in people's ears. RIP Steve Jobs