As someone who has experienced very little death, the loss of Steve Jobs has had quite an unexpected impact on me. Part of me knew it was coming, while another part had convinced myself it was a couple years off. Quite frankly, I'm not sure how to deal with it and there will be some crying involved at some point.
My career started in the late 90's and I worked exclusively on Windows. The average Mac users that I knew annoyed me. They were always complaining about incompatibility and they typically knew less about computers, in general, than Windows users. As it turned out THAT was kind of the idea. Steve didn't want the average user to know about the specs of their machine, he just wanted them to have the best experience possible. It wasn't about specs, it was about experience.
I didn't fully grasp that until October 2008, when I gave my wife an iPhone 3G for her birthday. I had the AT&T Tilt at the time and was pretty damn excited about the prospects of writing apps for the windows mobile platform. One problem though, I couldn't take my hands off her iPhone (literally) and it actually sparked a few arguments (sorry babe). I quickly made the decision to switch to the iPhone and have never been happier or more confident in a decision.
That iPhone purchase led me to other iPhones, my first MacBook, a MacMini, a couple Apple TVs, and an iMac. I couldn't be happier with ANY of those purchases. I didn't feel that any one of them was overpriced; in-fact, I priced out my iMac against the same computer (if assembled from mid-range parts at a very reasonable online retailer) and my iMac ended up being cheaper, after OS/software licensing fees.
Steve Jobs changed my life in the 80’s, but it took 20+ years for me to find out. He had a vision, he sold it, and he delivered. I will be forever grateful for the influence he had on the industry, the world, and eventually me.
I am deeply saddened by the loss of this truly remarkable man. I was not ready to see him go. My deepest condolences go out to his family and loved ones.
Thank you Mr. Jobs.