News of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs’ death yesterday made techies everywhere pause, reflect, and maybe treat their Macs, iPods, iPhones and iPads with more than the usual reverence. The death of this visionary leader, who helped transform not only the computing industry, but also the way in which consumers experienced digital media and communications, has left a gaping hole in the world of technology.
Back then, the choices were limited to clunky PCs with Microsoft technology, Commodores, and Ataris. I chose the IIe because it felt right. It was user friendly and I didn't have to remember complex codes for commands, as if I was some postgraduate math major. All I had to do was point, click, and begin.
It was that easy. Steve Jobs, it seemed, had created a computer just for me. Or that was how it felt.
He went on to explain how that one little computer did so much more than make his professional life easier:
At the heart of Apple products is the desire to communicate and to make our sensory lives as rich and layered as possible. And the complex engineering is always expressed in elegant, user-friendly devices that follow the intuitive contours of our minds. Steve Jobs has transformed the inhuman integers of 0s and 1s into a humane language that all of us can understand.
This has practical implications in our world. If we stopped thinking about “just the numbers” and more about what they meant–the values– then we would see the human faces behind our 9% unemployment rate: brothers and sisters who are looking for work so that they can feed their families, keep a roof over their heads, and maintain their dignity.
Steve Jobs wanted us to think about our world and the ways that we can make it better through our individual experience.
Thank you, Steve Jobs. You have expanded the possibilities of my life and the lives of my children.
At Translating Cuba, a site that regularly posts English translations of Cuban blogs, Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo paid tribute to the late Apple chairman in a post entitled “jobsless”, noting:
The day-to-day operation of TranslatingCuba.com and HemosOido.com is accomplished on an iMac and a Macbook.
Babalu blog also weighed in:
There are very few people outside of my family that I can say have had a positive effect on me. One man and his singular vision revolutionized not one but several industries. His technological vision was such that from kernels of ideas he created the first personal computer, created a computer with a graphical user interface, practically invented the digital publishing industry along with Adobe and Aldus, changed the way we listen to music, buy it, interact with it. And, he gave us the best damn smartphone ever developed. I am sitting here, writing this on one iteration of that computer, my iMac, and next to it are my iPhone, my Apple router, my iPad, and my iPod. They just work. Thanks to Steve.
The post continued:
Jobs was a genius, no doubt, but his kind of genius is not the E=MC2 kind; his is the evolutionary kind whose life's work, when taken in toto, amounts to a greatness few ever achieve, a greatness that touches so many lives with positive energy and delight. My generation has just lost its luminary.
From the Dominican Republic, Bracuta said:
You changed the way we worked, played games, listened to music and spoke on the phone. You changed our world in so many ways it is impossible to describe. You believed in your dreams and made us dream with you.
In one phrase, you made us think different.
Weblog Bahamas‘ Rick Lowe also commented:
You have left an indelible mark on this world and made it better for millions of us.
Lower down the Caribbean archipelago, in Trinidad and Tobago, coffeewallah noted:
This blog, since inception has always been written on an Apple computer, starting with a Powerbook and then moving to a succession on MacBook Pro's. Every computer I have ever owned has been a Mac, somehow, I've never been a PC type of girl.
Whether you liked him or not, used his products etc, we have lost a visionary make no mistake. Since the second coming of Jobs at Apple the company has consistently pushed the envelope to create products that capture the imagination and by so doing, changed the face of world.
Apple has inspired many to continue to reach, to up their game, Tim Cook has large shoes to fill. And in truth, Apple may continue on brilliantly, but it will never be the same.
Trinbagonian diaspora techie and longtime Mac genius in his own right, CunningLinguist added:
Steve Jobs officially became my boss in May 2005 and in the last six years, from part-time on the sales floor to full time tech support, I’ve participated in the launch of four iPhones, two iPads, three operating systems, the transition from PowerPC to Intel. I’ve introduced people to devices that have changed their lives, I’ve helped them get back on track when their favorite device doesn’t quite do what they expected it to and showed them how make the computer they’ve had last just a little bit longer.
Thank you Steve Jobs, for giving me and tens of thousands of retail employees the power to help people in whatever way we could. You didn’t hire each of us individually but your vision created the space for us to exist and I’m honored to have had you as my fearless leader.
Eloquent words from Caribbean netizens whose lives – real and virtual – were transformed by Steve Jobs and his innovative, user-friendly products – yet, Trini Like Salt managed to sum up the feelings of the regional blogosphere in a post that contained nothing more than a headline. Jobs would probably have loved the simplicity of it: