We’ve shared this story with you before but I could think of no better tribute given today’s sad news of his passing than to tell your my favourite Steve Jobs story again.
The video clip below dates back to 1996. In it, Jobs talks about what he dislikes about Microsoft: he evokes type-setting and proportional fonts to illustrate how Redmond consistently fails to innovate.
The story goes that when he saw the footage he felt bad and called Bill Gates to apologise. But it was an apology like only Jobs knew how to deliver them: “I’m sorry I said you had no taste,” he told Gates “I shouldn’t have said that in public.” There was a pause. And then, he couldn’t help himself and added: “but it’s true, you have no taste. I just shouldn’t have said it in public.”
The thing is, while some see this as Jobs at the height of his pomposity, I think he perfectly captured what makes us love Apple and its products. You see, if caring about how technology looks and feels as well as what it does made Jobs arrogant and pretentious, then colour me the same.
Think for a minute how much poorer the world would be without Apple. These guys brought style – and yes, culture – to the world of consumer electronics. They made gadgets beautiful, turning them into objects of desire in their own right, things you want to have in your life. They made them easy and fun to use. They awoke or enabled creative urges in us all.
I’m not exaggerating when I say that, without Apple, without Steve Jobs, I wouldn’t have the passion for technology that I have today. And this little site certainly would not exist.
Steve Jobs, you’ll be missed most by your family, your friends and your colleagues. But you’ll also be missed by countless others around the world who never met you but who have been touched by your life and work – including a fool here at Prodigal Towers. Rest in peace.
Steve Jobs, 1955-2011
Our tribute to Steve Jobs.
Our editor-in-chief, the self-proclaimed "greatest wit, raconteur and bon vivant of our age", borders on delusional. Over the years, the fool has squandered more money on fast cars, Swiss watches and electronic gadgetry of all kinds than he – or Mrs Fool – cares to remember. Come nightfall, he can invariably be found stumbling out of Dukes mumbling “just one more Martini; I could have handled just one mmmmm… [thud!]”
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