Today I heard that Steve Jobs has passed. A very sad day indeed. Apple is part of my life, the equipment is used in every part of my business, and for my own personal entertainment. Where would Apple be today without Mr. Jobs? I couldn’t tell you. But I know the company was better having him at the helm.
I can remember my first computer class in school. We were running Apples. The black screen with the green text. Writing Basic. So much fun, and a favorite class my Freshman year in high school. For years Apple was a part of my education. High School, College, Grad School….. The equipment was always cutting edge.
While at Rollins I was one of the computer lab assistants. We had IBM Clones, a few Unix boxes, and the Mac lab. How I remember those all in one boxes. Great systems. Not only were they in the computer lab, they were at our new paper as well. “The Sandspur.” I can’t tell you how much fun I had laying out pages with our Macs.
For some time after grad school Apple fell out of my life. The company had lost its way during the early 90’s in my opinion. I switched to PC and Microsoft. Reasonable prices for the hardware and software. A stable operating system, more software developers…..it all made sense. Apple was too proprietary then, software was limited, and the equipment didn’t make business sense in the real world. Windows 95, NT, 98 were my operating systems of choice.
As my personal career developed in Network Engineering I also became a Unix user. Windows and Unix together. Not quite an easy marriage, but doable. Still, I found in time that Windows wasn’t the best bet in my engineering world and I wished for a reasonable Unix system. But nothing was out there.
Enter OSX. Apple’s big change in OS, OSX offered a high end operating system for a low end price. Sure Apple was still more costly than anything in the PC market. But as an engineer I knew that I was getting a lot more for my dollar than what I was getting in the Windows world. So the switch came easily.
From my perspective Apple’s revival came directly with Steve Jobs coming back to the company. The man clearly had a vision about technology that few “techies” have. He really married functional systems with great design, and finally with a lot of power. What Apple produces today for consumers can be used in any high end engineering job out there. Or any creative job as well.
In the photo and graphics community Apple dominates the landscape. In my studio its no different. And it’s not because I’m an Apple groupie. It’s because I need a reliable stable system. Period. I think if you talk to any other imaging professionals out there you’d hear the same thing.
So, I think I speak for a great number of the techie / artistic community when I say that I’m sad to hear we’ve lost Mr. Jobs today. I know he handed over the reins recently and I hope the company continues forward with it’s innovative systems. But I’m sure the loss will be felt for some time to come. Apple has been part of my life for a long time, and it’s in no small part due to a man with a great vision. Rest in peace. You’ll be missed by a huge community!