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CHRISTOPHER TAYLOR'S BOOKS

Thursday, October 06, 2011

RIP JOBS

"Apple's market share is bigger than BMW's or Mercedes's or Porsche's in the automotive market. What's wrong with being BMW or Mercedes?"
Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs has died, which took me by surprise. I didn't expect him to die soon, I just figured he was feeling low and needed time off to fight his cancer.

I don't care for Apple products much, primarily because of their advertising and the trendy douchbags that buy them, but that doesn't make them bad. Sure, I would rather have a Zune (can replace the batteries without a shop, has an FM tuner, plus everything the I-Pod has) and the everything that Apple puts out is severely overpriced and under customizable, but they put out good products.

Jobs wasn't an innovator, he didn't come up with new technology, and he wasn't some cutting edge genius at electronics or computers. What he was a genius with was taking existing tech and putting it together in a way that marketed well and selling it to people. He was a packaging and marketing genius who made computers cool.

Jobs wasn't some visionary, he basically made technology appeal to people who needed a brand name and didn't have the time or inclination to learn to use it. For people who really know computers, Apples drive you berserk because they're so painfully restrictive. For those who do not, Apples are brilliant because they take virtually no effort or understanding to achieve goals.

And that was genius. Jobs took technology others developed, packaged it well, and turned his product into a notable market share by hooking academics and Hollywood types on it. It wasn't that other platforms couldn't do what Apple did - Amiga did it all, and better, first. It was that he made it cool. That's all the advertising is for Apple: this is cool, and you will be too if you buy it.

And, he was responsible for building up and funding Pixar, which has put out some of the finest animation and entertainment in the last 20 years. So thanks, Steve!

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