Last night, while Ricky and I were at a local Friendly's, drinking Fribbles after a stressful day and trying to relive our youth/save the franchise (more on that later), he got a text from a friend saying that Steve Jobs had passed away. I'm saddened by this, though unsurprised with his stepping down from Apple over the summer. He was not the robust man of even five years ago, and so I feared that it was only time.
We then spent the rest of our Fribble date night talking about the impact he had on our lives and the world. To say that Steve Jobs had a huge effect on our lives is an understatement. We both had iPods, and I'm debating making the plunge into the world of iPhones this fall or winter. I spent a lot of time in high school on the fashionable iMacs. Hell, my physics labs were completed on MacIntoshes. We went to see Toy Story 3 as a date. I remember how big of a deal it was to get an iPod mini as a Christmas gift in college. I'm typing this post while on a Mac and every student who meets with me is using their MacBook while getting phone calls on their iPhone.
I don't want to reinvent the wheel here by saying how much of a visionary he is (though I just kind of did) or how he left an indelible mark on technology, business, and marketing. If you go to Entertainment Weekly or Wired, you can see a timeline of just what he did. But there is a huge sadness that he has passed. Perhaps it's how it was when Edison passed. Or Disney. Or Einstein. That we lost a huge visionary who affected our lives in ways we may not even know. His legacy and his company's legacy will be discussed for generations.
I found the following video on Wired that splices together all of his presentations on the new apple products. From the early 80's on, the message is clear: I am a visionary, and I know that what I'm about to show you will affect our technology and how we live. There's a smugness to it, but then again... if you were Steve Jobs, wouldn't you be a little smug, too?
So thanks, Steve. It's been great.