Thursday, October 6, 2011

Mourning Jobs: A Model for Our Age

Mourning Jobs: A Model for Our Age
United Daily News editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
A Translation
October 7, 2011

Summary: Apple Computer founder and chairman Steve Jobs is dead. The Apple board issued a statement reading: "We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today. Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve."

Full Text Below:

Apple Computer founder and chairman Steve Jobs is dead. The Apple board issued a statement reading: "We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today. Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve."

Just 24 hours earlier, Apple released its new iPhone 4S. But because it was not the much-anticipated iPhone 5, public reaction was mixed, Many journalists began discussing a "post-Apple era" without Steve Jobs. Twenty-four hours later, Jobs passed away. His 56 year long life could not have come to a more dramatic end.

Less than a week after he was born, he was adopted by a couple in California. He dropped out of college after one semester. When he was 21, he and a friend co-founded Apple. The company experienced its first wave of success. But internal power struggles forced Jobs out. Jobs then founded NeXT computer. Apple performed poorly after Jobs left. Eventually it asked him to return. Apple scaled one height after another, until today.

Steve Jobs was the soul of Apple. He was an key force who changed the world. American pundits say that Steve Jobs bears the same relationship to the beginning of 21st century that Thomas Edison bore to the beginning of the 20th century. Edison was an inventor in an age of inventors. Jobs was a product innovator in an age of product innovation.

Jobs' most famous and most widely read aphorism was, "To live is to change the world. Is there any other reason?" He really did change the world, He not only changed the world, he defined the era.

He defined the computer age. From the 80s second-generation Apple2, to the 90s Macintosh line, Jobs was involved not only in the birth of the personal computer, he also made the computer a popular experience, Today many fans love the Mac interface and its unique style.

He defined a new era of film-making. After leaving Apple, Jobs founded Pixar. He used animation technology to make the "Toy Story" movies. He established numerous film history records, He brought animated film into the digital realm.

He defined a new era of music. The iPod and iTunes were music industry killer devices, He introduced a new generation of digital music. Jobs changed the way music was transmitted and stored. But he always believed that the nature and meaning of music had not changed. Technology merely helped people enjoy music with higher fidelity, more efficiently.

During the last five years of his life, he defined the action era. The iPhone gave birth to the smart phone, It combined the functions of a phone and a personal computer. Mobile services led to a structural revolution. After Apple came out with the iPad, Information Technology entered the "post-PC era." People demanded greater mobility and more entertainment value. This indirectly contributed to the development of "cloud technology," because it enabled seamless integration between different devices.

More importantly, Jobs defined a new era of leadership. His ideas and aphorisms were published and became a best seller. Jobs' lectures and briefings were popular events. They were even made into university courses. The world Jobs created was a concept, an ideal. His products and technologies were merely a means to realize his dreams. He never felt he was selling hardware or software, but introducing people to a total experience.

Behind every successful individual, there is always an important support team. But without Jobs' charisma as a leader, without Jobs' vision as a dreamer, a strong technical team and smart financial management alone can never change the world.

What do we hope to learn from him? Jobs' leadership style, Jobs' approach to trends and products, should give politicians and businessmen on Taiwan cause for reflection. What makes for a total experience in products and services? What character traits make for a leader with vision? What sort of thinking is worthy of becoming a corporate vision?

Steve Jobs was not God, Some of his decisions have yet to survive the test of time, For example, his closed operating system strategy, his opposition to "machine sea tactics," his belief in focusing on a single product. Jobs was a model of success. But he also created obstacles, by establishing a mythology about himself. Tim Cook, his successor at Apple, said he must not be compared with Jobs, In this world there is only one Steve Jobs. He may not be unique in the history of the world. But he is unique in the world of today.

If he lived for another decade, the world, like it or not, would have been even more different,

2011.10.07 03:09 am


距此二十四小時之前,蘋果電腦公司剛發表了新的智慧型手機iPhone 4S,但因為不是眾所期待的iPhone 5,因此外界褒貶不一,許多媒體開始討論沒有賈伯斯的「後蘋果時代」;二十四小時之後,賈伯斯離世,為他五十六年的戲劇人生,劃下了一個簡直不能更戲劇性的句號。













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