Friday, October 7, 2011

Goodbye, Steve Jobs

We all knew Steve Jobs was dying but it still came as a shock to hear that he had died.

Steve Jobs was the kind of genius that our society used to be good at producing.  He was a child of the '60s who took LSD and dropped out of college (which he perceived to be a rip-off of his working-class parents).  He started a company in his garage which ended as one of the most important companies in the world and changed our culture forever.

Although he worked in computers, he was never a techie.  He was all about the human interface — the comprehensible graphics, the user-friendly click wheel, the product that you can take out of the box and use immediately, without reading a manual (who wants to do that?) or installing software.

Any middle-class parent today whose young-adult child followed Steve Jobs' path would be spitting tacks.   Drop out of college, and then spend a year sleeping on your friends' floors and studying calligraphy?  Travel to India and return as a Buddhist with a shaved head?  No!  Do your homework, take your AP classes, graduate from a top-tier college, and grab one of the few well-paid jobs left!

Creativity, innovation, and genius are fostered by freedom.  Where will our next Steve Jobs come from?

1 comment:

  1. I don't think Jobs felt that college was a rip-off, but rather that a) he was going to a very expensive college, b) he had no idea what he wanted to do with his life and c) his parents had very limited resources; therefore the whole situation was wasting his parents' money.