There has been one interesting constant throughout my career in technology. This constant was brought forward by many others over the past week with the passing of Steve Jobs on Tuesday, October 5th.
During my time at a handful of companies in a handful of markets there has always, at some point, been a hardware engineer, software developer, product manager, marketer, or company executive who has referred to Apple’s innovation, design elegance, user experience or marketing genus. This reference has been introduced most often when some sort of impasse has been reached and someone wants to make a point that everyone in the room will understand.
The point usually goes something like this…
“Look at the [choose your product: iMac, Mac G4 Cube, MacBook, MacOS, iPod, iPsd, iTunes]. Our product should be as [choose one or more: elegant, simple, inviting, easy to use, brilliant].”
Making this point usually leads to discussion about how to embrace the user experience, think creatively, and achieve greatness.
Apple and their products have had an unmatched influence on how many of us work, play and communicate. They have also influenced how we think, create, design and market. I can’t think of another company that has had as much influence across as many areas of my personal and work lives.
I’m proud to say that one of the influences behind ThingMagic’s '100 Uses of RFID' program was the Apple III advertisement from 1983 (part 3) which answered the question “Will someone please tell me exactly what a personal computer can do?”
I think Apple answered that question well.