I’ve been reading the official biography of Steve Jobs. Whilst he was one of the most innovative and driven entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley, it is well know he was a pretty hard guy to deal with at times and he took no prisoners.
I’ve worked in IT for a long time. I pre-date PCs and I’ve seen a lot of new things come and go over the years. Most of my experience has been with PCs and Microsoft which is another high tech business with a well-known CEO Bill Gates. Microsoft was a company who you could money because of rather than with. I was lucky enough to be part of the OEM team in the UK who helped test Windows 95. It was a great experience, there were lots of meetings and stuff and a huge convention in Birmingham which was attended by Bill who gave a really good presentation.
Over the years I’ve heard him talk on another four occasions and he always painted a pretty interesting picture of where the world, as far as PCs were concerned anyway, was going. Since almost all my customers used PCs or were in the process of moving from mainframes or minis to PC networks I had to maintain a good relationship with Microsoft. At that time if you were to walk down the street you lived in and asked all your neighbours what products they used throughout their home the only common denominator would have been Microsoft products. Fact.
I did have a couple of clients who used Apple products but they were in the more creative business areas. At times I had to work the Apple products and to me it was a black art.
I bought my first Apple product about eight years ago. It was an Ipod and I bought it because at long last Apple had developed Itunes for Windows. It worked wonderfully although the software wasn’t ideal as there were issues with the Windows side. The Ipod was an absolute joy and the next generation was even more appealing but I still stuck with the PCs and Microsoft to maintain compatibility with my clients.
I’ve just updated my Apple hardware, yes I moved over a few years ago since I don’t really do hands on stuff anymore. I replaced my third Macbook with a 27” iMac which is the best computer and user experience I’ve enjoyed. I’ll hopefully replace my PC laptop with a new Ipad in the next few weeks or so and from then on I’ll be an Apple convert. I use an Iphone for personal use and an Iphone for business use, every device that comes from Apple looks fabulous and is much simpler to use.
Steve Jobs delivered products which were innovative to a point that new markets were created, he delivered products which were beautifully designed all the way through and which work incredibly well. His drive and commitment delivered this and Apple continue to move along the path which will continue to deliver great devices.
Steve died last year having achieved immense success with Apple and with Pixar. I hope his legacy carries on for a long time even if, at times he was less than patient and even tempered.