Friday, October 07, 2011

Steve Jobs

Like many I have had Steve Jobs in my thoughts of late. The other morning I woke up thinking that Steve Jobs had become the international symbol of what an American is much like John Wayne was to an earlier generation. Both men were very protective of their image and both had gained mythic status which will last long after their deaths.

Then I started thinking the death of Steve Jobs must have been what it was like in earlier ages when a long-serving Pope passed away. Apple fans have given over a religious like zeal to their technology and Jobs had attained a God-like status for many Apple afficianados. The bad thing to this analogy is the fact that there is no and can be no white smoke announcing the next Steve Jobs.

Joseph Campbell, who was to the study of mythology what Jobs was to technology, may have said that Jobs life embodied a hero's journey. That thought is brought home by this old ad (narrated by Steve Jobs) about The Crazy Ones. Steve Jobs certainly would have been included in that group of heroes in the Joseph Campbell concept of a hero who travels outside the known to return to the community with a new knowledge or power.

Of all that has been written of Steve Jobs since his passing - nothing is more relevant than Steve Jobs' own words from the now famous 2005 Stanford Commencement Speech. If you haven't seen the speech yet - make watching it a priority today.

For the record - I am not a Mac guy. I've had PC's and Blackberry's and MP3 players with nary an Apple product in my life. That's not to say I can't recognize genius when I see it. Or appreciate that genius when it is gone.

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