Steve Jobs: 1955-2011

Just heard the news and, as with Jack Layton’s passing, the death of the co-founder of Apple was probably not a complete surprise but still pretty shocking.

In fact, when I said how sad I was, Shea said “As sad as when Jack Layton died?” and I replied “More.”  I went on to explain that although Jack had a huge impact on Canada and its political history, Steve Jobs revolutionized not just one or two but arguably four industries in his lifetime.

Here’s what I’ve just posted on Facebook and in the relevant MetaFilter thread which had 500 comments within an hour:

Most people would be lucky to revolutionize one industry; Steve Jobs radically changed four: computers (Apple), animation (Pixar), music (iTunes/iPod) and mobile (iPhone).

There is a story that during a Presidential summit on technology, a bunch of big name CEOs were sitting around the table. The CEO of Oracle said “Mr. President – there’s only one CEO at this table who can’t be replaced. And that’s Steve Jobs.”

I guess we’ll see…

Although I’ve used Apple products off and on since the earliest days of my life as a computer user, I was a relative latecomer to the Cult of Mac as an owner.  I’m not a total convert either (Shea has a PC as do my folks, her folks and her brother – all on my advice as it’s hard to convince people to buy a $1000+ laptop when you get a cheap Acer for a third of that – even with all the advantages that Macs have.)

Anyhow, coming after the announcement of the iPhone 4GS yesterday, it’s comforting to know that Steve Jobs would’ve at least been able to see that final launch and know that the company would continue to move forward.

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