With the untimely passing of one of the greatest entrepreneurs of all time, we take a few minutes to take a look at not just the products he created, but a few of the other ways that Steve Jobs helped revolutionize technology and helped create the world as we know it today. This isn’t about praising the iPhone or the iPad or those hilarious Mac vs. PC commercials; this is about recognizing the charisma, determination and perseverance of a true innovator.
Steve Jobs was a notorious micro-manager, but his extreme attention to detail and design, and even that stubbornness and swagger, has led to some of the most innovative products of our time. His vision for making technology as simple and easy to use as possible combined with the sexiness of design is widely visible today.
Let’s even forget about Apple for a second. After Jobs was booted from the company in 1985 he purchased a little known computer graphics company called The Graphics Group. Today that company is responsible for completely changing the way we watch movies. The group has now become Pixar, and with Steve Jobs at the helm for the 1995 release of Toy Story, Pixar has helped inspire a whole new generation of animated films that focus on perhaps Steve Jobs’ most intriguing personality trait – storytelling.
His track record speaks for itself. Jobs had an uncanny ability to envision a product that people needed and bringing it to them. He wasn’t the first to create a computer, but he saw the vision of bringing them into the everyday home. He also wasn’t the first to create a device that could play music, but foresaw the potential to have a single device that could house a person’s entire individuality right in their pocket.
Just ask the other techno-giants how tough it has been to knock Steve Jobs off of the top of the innovation tower. Jobs was never one to be content with what was already here. He was consistently stepping up the game and getting everyone to play catch up, and not only in the computer industry either. Jobs almost single-handedly forced the entire music industry to conform to a new digital age and also forced cell phone companies to change the way they operate with data plans.
When Apple nearly bit the dust in 1997, Steve Jobs struck a deal with Microsoft that would help keep the company alive by cooperating on a few different technology fronts. Apple would then start producing some of the fastest and most powerful computers at the time and a whole new line of personal computers called the iMac. By the time the next annual report rolled around, Apple was worth nearly $6 billion. Then came the real revolution with the portable iProducts we know today.
There’s no debating that the man knew how seize an opportunity. For this lesson we thank Steve most of all. I know we at Point Click will miss you but we will keep the these lessons we learned from watching you with us.
Perhaps the Apple slogan used during their greatest turnaround period sums up arguably the greatest technological mind of our generation. Steve Jobs certainly knew how to “Think different.”