God's got a new iPhone
I shudder to think where I would be without Apple founder and former CEO Steve Jobs.
Why, a grammar stickler like me would certainly never dream of using the letter I alone in lower case.
Black turtlenecks would still be exclusively reserved for beatniks, artists, and poets.
The plural "Jobs" might merely stand for multiple versions of Biblical suffering.
Oh, and technology as we know it would not exist.
Do you remember when you turned the corner? I do. I recall unsheathing my first Apple product: A white 2004 iBook. Compared to my clunky, hulking Hewlett-Packard PC, the iBook was a newborn full of promise and possibility.
Let's put it this way: We were lucky to exist in the era of Jobs. He's the reason we get to live in the future—while we remain squarely in the present.
What began with Jobs and fellow college dropout Steve Wozniakin a Silicon Valley garage in 1976 bloomed into the impetus driving the most user-friendly, lucrative, aesthetically-centered, and individualized technological experiences of our lifetimes.
It was a true American success story—fraught with brushes with bankruptcy, culminating in being crowned the world leader in technological brilliance. What was once only the stuff of sci-fi became our truth-is-wilder-than-fiction reality.
Jobs wanted what you couldn't touch. He wanted what you could only imagine. And he wanted you to want it—and have it—too.
So he conceptualized and he created. His commitment to magic spawned the Macintosh, the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad—products that would forever change the way we interacted, entertained, and communicated.
Of course, mass outpourings of cult-like adoration ensued, yours truly included. But who could blame us? There had been nothing, and there still isn't anything, like the look, feel and intuition of an Apple product.
Do you remember when you turned the corner? I do.
I recall unsheathing my first Apple product: A white 2004 iBook. Compared to my clunky, hulking Hewlett-Packard PC, the iBook was a newborn full of promise and possibility. Time stood still for that instant and I held my breath as I pressed the tiny power button.
I was enthralled with splendor it commanded. This exquisite, gleaming piece of machinery belonged to me.
I'd left the Windows world behind, once and for all. For beauty, for innovation, for new territory. I was liberated.
That pivotal moment turned into a lifetime of seeking the high of one new Apple product after another—a refrain shared by millions around the globe, I'm sure. I waited in endless lines for Apple products. Frustrated at times with the waits and the cult of Apple, I compared them to chlamydia. I live blogged their post-turtleneck-titan launches. My arsenal grew from one laptop to every key portable that I owned shamelessly bearing the Apple logo.
There was nothing like Apple and no one like Steve Jobs. He not-so-secretly ignited and inspired me. He made the impossible possible. He took my geeky, pie-in-the-sky hopes and harnessed them.
As much as I may scold my sleek Jobs technology, I know there's nothing else truly like it. Nothing. And Steve Jobs put it in the palm of my hand.
You weren't a software engineer, Steve. You weren't a marketer. You were a dreamer, a doer, and a believer. You were the Thomas Edison of our time.
You were a digital revolutionary, Steve. Without you, people like me would still be yearning for tomorrow. But because of you, we already have tomorrow—today.
Rest in peace, Steve. I —the letter and me—won't be the same without you.