Steve who?

Steve who?

Apparently someone called Steve has passed away recently. Surely everyone knows Steve who? Or do they...?

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Well it didn't really come as a shock, but there is always an element of sadness when someone who has contributed greatly to the world dies.

I'm not even going to attempt to sum up Steve Jobs's life or career, except to say that the phrases, 'The computer for the rest of us' and 'It just works' seem particularly relevant.

Of course the question now arises of where Apple will go without Jobs at the helm, who apparently took attention to detail so far that a component that would never be seen by anyone other than a repairman was once rejected on the grounds that it was ugly?

Those of us who use Apple computers, iPhones, iPads, iTunes and the rest might have cause for concern. Those of us who don't might have cause for concern too as Apple has set a standard of design quality and functional simplicity that is widely emulated. Where would Windows be now without Apple's influence? It would probably work just as well, but it would be damned hard work, if you see what I mean.

But what if you had never heard of Steve Jobs? Just as you never hear of the CEO of just about any company whose products you use every day. If the CEO of MacDonalds met an unfortunately early demise, would I worry about the quality of my next burger and fries?

Jobs would have been just as influential at Apple if he had not put himself in the public eye, and his passing would have been just as significant for the company.

But great companies have a 'company ethos' that is much bigger than any one individual. That Jobs contributed enormously to Apple's company ethos is not doubted. But the Apple ethos has not passed with Jobs, it is still alive, well and very likely to thrive for years to come. Perhaps decades.

And, believe it or not, not everyone has heard of Steve Jobs - even enthusiastic Apple users.

I realized this two days after Jobs's death when I came into contact with a 15-year old relative. "What's new?" I asked. The response was that look of blank incomprehension common in youngsters when they are assessing whether an adult might be saying something that is vaguely worth paying any kind of attention to.

But when prompted I received updates on school, musical instrument progress, family life etc.

"And what do you think about Steve Jobs?"

Blank incomprehension, followed by, "Steve who?"

Although a user of Apple computers, an iPad and on occasion an iPhone, and having owned five iPods over the years, she had never heard of Steve Jobs. And, when you think about it, there is no reason why anyone who doesn't have a special interest in computers should.

Bad news for the memory of Steve Jobs, but good news I'd say for Apple. People will buy their products as long as they continue to provide what 'the rest of us' want.

Steve Jobs then... he wasn't the only innovator or visionary in the world, but he was one of the greats. And, by those who knew of him, he will be missed.

Publication date: Sunday October 09, 2011
Author: David Mellor



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Earlier discussion on this topic...

Earfulaudio, Whitecourt, Canada

I would just like to say ... Thank you to Record Producer.Com. By being aware of ... the impact people and music ... make ... on people and music. I learn a great deal ... by what you share with us. I love seeing Record Producer.Com in my inbox. Music ... when all is said and done ... is made by people ... for people. Recording properly should reflect that whole vibration. God Bless those that facilitate that endeavor. Technology as well. Thank you ... for so much good information ... about so many aspects of this thing that we all love ... for so long. Cheers
Tuesday November 01, 2011


Jeff, Apple wasn't new in 1976 either. The military is mostly always ahead by 40 years. Military technology takes quantum leaps while the consumer is way behind on what it is fed. Computers are a way of tagging the average human. Same way a deer gets tagged in the wild and chip embedded.
Thursday October 13, 2011

Lusse Kigozi, Kampala, Uganda

If he refreshed the idea and pannel-beat it to our present day need, no matter whether the idea was brought in by military or another someone we do nt know, Steve was a great resurrecter of ideas then, and we should apprause and give him due sorrowful minds.
Tuesday October 11, 2011

Phizz V12, Harare, Zimbabwe

It takes a great man with a good heart to fight the greed that comes with business and overcome the urge to sell profitable goods whilst holding back cutting edge tech. Most companies only release a product after a rival company releases a gadget threatening their masterpiece. Steve was a great man..
Tuesday October 11, 2011

Matt, USA

My goodness lets get the Krud Kutter out. The real issue, did he do what he did for people's sake or business sake (if you are mostly a human you may get this if on the other hand if you are all business you may not). For him to be so mourned much of what he did was done for people's sake. I have one of his machines and it has added much to my pursuit of happiness. In a country with about 300 hundred million serious minded business entrepreneurs all chasing the same carrot. Someone who does for people's sake is rare. He may not be a world change-a-neer but he will be remembered none the less. Oh and didn't the military get some of their inventions from crashed aliens.
Monday October 10, 2011

Karel Post, Grou, Netherlands

Glory and peace to STeve, great thinker and brilliant concept designer... But... Does the name Jack Tramiel ring a bell? He, together with Digital Research's TOS operating system, gave us the Atari ST.... Harddisk recording and quality sequencing was first affordable on Atari machines! I remember the time Cubase Audio was faster on the Atari Falcon than any other machine including the MAC. Let us also remember that! Peace.
Monday October 10, 2011

Cedup, N.j., U.s.a.

He didn't change the world, he is being put on a very undeserved pedestal. He was a salesman first, P.T. Barnum, managed to have lots of nudnicks line up on the streets to buy a CELL phone. Well they also follow lots of religions too. Let's see, changed the world N. TESLA, 3 phase power, Jonas Salk cured POLIO, Edison electrified NYC. Gerard Philips became world's largest lighting company and things like CD, DVD, Blu-Ray from the company he founded. Siemens, GE. Philo Farnsworth...yeah, if you ain't never heard of him, no wonder ya think Jobs is up there, hardly. TI invented integrated ckt, there would be no stuff. Bell Labs. Jobs was a salesman, nothing more. Stop the insanity. The people who discovered ANTI-Biotics!! change the world, Jobs is ZERO. Wake up
Monday October 10, 2011

Ben, Chandler,az, USA

The false cutting edge technology claimed to be 30 to 40 years old would not have been possible 30 or 40 years ago as the necessary large scale integrated circuits, required to build the processors, did not exist. Some of it may have been theoretical back then, but certainly not a reality..., such is the path of progress.
Monday October 10, 2011

Michael Jones, Orange, Ca, USA

Steve Jobs was a visionary AND a businessman. A combo not often found in the technical community. His balance allowed him to create AND sell at the same time. So here is the catch. Apple, and for that matter any tech company, needs that or they are doomed. Microsoft had Bill Gates (also a visionary businessman whether you're a fan or not) step down from the day to day, and Apple stepped right in and capitalized on Microsoft's new inability to move creatively in the tech space. Coincidence that the iPod, iPhone, and iPad came on the heels of Microsoft's demise? I think not. So Apple, who almost went under when they fired Jobs in the 90s, will not be as successful without him because without the visionary leader they are just another business that will rise and fall with the tides. Just like the first time Jobs was gone Apple will shrink over time into an almost ran against the entrenched monolithic leaders of this space that they were finally making headway against. The Apple embrace of the artistic community made it the main player in audio and video production. Steve was the reason for this. He understood how us right brainers click. Sadly, I fear that Apple will now just move with the same tech trends that have nothing to do with multimedia, publishing, or art in general and really center on smaller, cheaper, faster where profit instead of product rules. We will all miss Steve, but the real question is ... "who's next?"
Monday October 10, 2011

Don Norman, Kingston, Canada

I think Gwen and Mihai have put forth very interesting viewpoints. I hope Apple/Steve fans won't go wild and will consider the possible validity of their observations. Cheers, Don Norman
Monday October 10, 2011

Jeff, Los Angeles, USA

Gwen- Apple was founded in 1976. It is nothing new, and nobody thinks it is.
Monday October 10, 2011

Jason, Honolulu, United States

I dont know much about Apple's design "chain of command" but Steve's mind and eye was a HUGE part of that Apple ethos, if not the raging fire behind it. I'm not sure who's up-to-bat but he's got HUGE shoes to fill. I could see Apple continuing to put out great products for a few more years and then withering away into general vagueness in time, with no great leader at it's helm. I really hope not, but unless someone of similar character takes over, it's bound to happen. Apple will become just another HP or DELL...putting out great products but no more "game (or life) changers".
Monday October 10, 2011

Mihai, Bucharest, Romania

Well, Apple is not about IT, is about fashion.
Monday October 10, 2011


It may surprise many that the technology that we've been endowed with is 30 or 40 year old technology already invented by the military. There is underground info that Steve was a front man. We think we are being given cutting edge computers but its decades old. Since we are seeing it for the first time, we marvel. We need to step back a bit and not take everything we see as the way it is.
Monday October 10, 2011