Friday, October 7, 2011

We Wait for Steve

I realize that almost everyone is writing about the legacy of Steve Jobs, which is a true testament to how much this man (who most have never met) has touched all of our lives, but I don’t think enough can really be said, so I wanted to throw in my two cents too.

Steve Jobs leans against his wife, Laurene Powell Jobs

Like many others, I learned of his passing on my iPhone, a device that he created. It was then with bittersweet feelings that I watched over the next few hours as the top trend on Twitter rotated between “RIP Steve Jobs”, “iSad”, “Thank You Steve”, and “Think Different”. I can’t think of a more fitting tribute for someone who strove to make sure we all had the world available at our fingertips.

The creative-beyond-belief mind of this genius of a man has literally transformed our society, for the better. He has dreamt up and created devices that most of us could have never imagined. He opened up a whole new playground for us to enjoy on a daily basis.

But it’s more than that. He gave us new ways to connect and stay connected to people. Rather than lamenting the fact that I can no longer play a board game, share music, cook, or enjoy a beer with my brothers as often as when we all lived in the same state, I celebrate that we can play scrabble, send pictures of our latest dinner invention or brewery find, and share music through our Apple devices that Steve created. He has provided us with new ways to experience and enjoy not only new things in the world, but the same old staples in our lives, like family and friends.

But perhaps an even greater contribution of his is the fact that he has  instilled in society the philosophy to “think different” and “never settle”. A man who was forced to drop out of college because he could not afford the expense of it, became a symbol for “if you work hard enough, and you believe in it, you can achieve it”, inspiring many to not give up on their dreams.

He also single-handedly (in my opinion) made technology and being a “nerd” cool. A society that once viewed tinkering with computers and other devices as “geeky” has been transformed into one that waits with bated-breath for the next Apple conference or the launch of the next iDevice, we wait in lines that wrap around street blocks to be the first one with the new iPhone, iPad, etc., in short----

We wait for Steve.

We owe a great deal to Steve, I know I do, and I think we will always be waiting for him.

In the meantime, I am going to try to live my life according to this:

Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Jobs, Stanford Commencement Speech, 2005

Photo courtesy of Yahoo News

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