By Siva Om on Tue, 04/03/2012
While I will be the first to acknowledge the amazing technological achievements of Apple's line is computing products, I must say, more than any technological accomplishment, Apple's phenomenal success rests in large part upon the amazing sociological phenomena it has so meticulously and intentionally generated, over decades of persistent effort.
If we look back to the pre-iPhone years we will recall the tremendously successful Mac versus PC commercial series, in which Macs were represented by the ultra-cool, laid back, easy going, amicable hipster, while PCs were represented as the uptight, geeky, bumbling office-nerd. These wildly popular commercials weren't just clever advertising ploys. These commercials tapped into an underlying sociological sentiment that Apple computers were the revolutionary beatniks of the computing world. And it was these commercials that helped lay the groundwork and re-orient public perception towards Apple products in advance of the release of the ground-breaking and game-changing iPhone.
If we think back even further (especially those of us who have been using Apple computers for many years prior to their current economic and social mega-success) we ought to be able to recall the typical reaction when we would share with someone that we used Apple computers. Personally I lost track of the number of times people would respond to that news dismissively, saying something along the lines of: "Oh, you must be an artist. I hear Apple's are great for artist-types. But for real world, practical application, wouldn't you say a PC is best?" I know I'm not alone in having heard something along those lines for years, before Apple's fortune skyrocketed. In fact, if I had a dollar for every time I heard such sentiment back in the day, my fortunes might now rival Apple's!
In fact, I kind of enjoyed the fact that Apple computers were the less popular computers of the rebels and odd-balls, the ones notorious for thinking outside of the box. Now that everyone is jumping on the Apple bandwagon perhaps it's an encouraging sign of the times for the human race. Perhaps we will continue to see more people adopt the Apple "Think Different" sensibilities. Perhaps we will continue to see this social experiment we call humanity progress in ways that would make Mr. Jobs proud.
Indeed, it is rare that a mass-produced technological product comes along and supports human growth in a positive and altruistic fashion, connecting us and uniting us in an unprecedented social movement, proportionately comparable to the massive youth movements and civil rights action of the late 60's, which ironically enough, is the generation that gave birth to the former intuitive leader behind Apple's claim to fame; flower-child-hippy-counter-culture-geek, Mr. Steve Jobs.
As "Occupy" movements sweep the globe, as human consciousness takes steps towards a more global, sustainable and equality-conscious perspective, I can't help but wonder, how much does Apple have to do with our progressive evolution? As we move forward, with our iDevices in hand and our connections to the whole world supported, not just by Apple's iDevices, but also by Apple's "Think Different" motto, it seems like more than just a technological revolution is happening! Apple has incited a majorly significant social and cultural revolution, the likes of which we have rarely seen in this day and age and at this level. A revolution that has been very subtle and clever in that, as obvious as it may seem now, really snuck up on the world at large and left us all quoting to ourselves, Steve Jobs' final words in this world: "Wow, wow, wow..."
As always, thank you for reading!
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