I knew Steve Jobs wasn’t well, but I didn’t realize his days were coming to an end. Then I heard the news today and I had a hard time not getting emotional over a man with whom I have virtually no connection.
But that’s the thing. I may have never met Steve Jobs in person, but he clearly poured his heart and soul into his work. He imagined products that were not simply objects of utility, but were the simple yet elegant love-children of form and function. He injected the spirit of creativity into everything that reached the consumer market and then some (because we all know that creativity is met with flops, failures, and ideas that just don’t work). He exuded passion, glowed with pride at these creations. His keynotes were some of the most exciting addresses, not just because it meant we were getting in on the next big thing, but because of his excitement. He shared his enthusiasm and it spread like wildfire. Sure, there were always criticisms, but come on. Who wasn’t secretly itching to get their hands on whatever new brain-baby he had sprouted this time? No, I may have never met Steve Jobs in person, but I observe a little part of his genius every day when I pick up my phone, when I listen to music, even as I type this now on my wireless keyboard and iMac.
I know there are people who are wondering why these crazy fanboys & girls are so frenzied over Steve Jobs’ death. It goes far beyond nerdy fandom (and dare I say obsession). It’s a matter of losing one of the boldest and most brilliant minds of our time. He pushed the boundaries of what we considered possible. He changed the way we conduct business. He changed the way we communicate. He changed the music industry. He challenged the rules and turned them upside down over and over and over again. He was a revolutionary and his incredible work changed the world.
So thank you, Steve Jobs, for daring to think different, for empowering the geeks of the world to see their crazy ideas through and shake things up. Thank you for sharing yourself and your work with the world. You’ll be missed.