Remembering Steve Jobs: Reflecting On His Legacy.

October 5 marks the five-year anniversary of the death of Steve Jobs. And, despite never having met him in person, I miss him dearly. He was an inspiration to so many, myself included. Jobs was a visionary innovator, a person by whose very life, the world was brought closer together. I can't help but wonder and imagine how this genius inventor, of Middle Eastern descent, would view the social and political climate we are living in today.

Jobs was a uniquely creative genius. As Jobs' biographer, Walter Issacson, described him, he was an "entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing."

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Despite being the consummate businessman and building a technology empire unlike anything the world had ever seen, Jobs remained a product of his counterculture roots, and he seemed to hold on to the optimistic and transcendent ideals and principles that he was raised with as a child of the '60s. Case in point, he told reporters that taking the mind-altering psychedelic LSD was one of the most important things he ever did in his life. And, as his death drew near, he shared with his biographer some of his favorite music, songs that had continued to influence him throughout his entire life. Scrolling through his iPod during his last days revealed a person still deeply moved by revolutionary artists and metaphysical lyricists such as Bob Dylan, The Beatles, The Grateful Dead, and The Doors.

I think it is significant, and indicative of his propensity for "thinking different," that when Jobs left this world he passed the reins of his company to a relatively soft-spoken member of his staff, Tim Cook. Although I was only somewhat familiar with Cook at the time of Jobs' passing, he has certainly endeared himself to me for a number of reasons. Not the least of which is the fact that he is an openly gay man leading one of the worlds most powerful companies. He continues to be a champion for human rights and, he keeps a framed portrait of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. prominently displayed in his office. If the reports are accurate, and Jobs was a man of fire and fury, Tim Cook strikes me as a man of contemplative temperance and pragmatism. I wouldn't call him Jobs' polar opposite, but it would seem that Jobs consciously chose a successor who was not a carbon copy of himself, but rather, a person who might lead his company with an innovative vision and a calm and magnanimous hand.

Since Jobs' death, there has been a steady flow of questioning by the media of Cook's effectiveness and his vision as the new leader of Apple. Despite the criticism, Apple has continued to thrive in a technology market that has become increasingly saturated. The question isn't will Cook do well as Jobs' successor, for this he has already done. A more accurate question is how well he will steer Apple into the post-iPhone, post-iPad era. With the laptop's days of superiority at an end and tablets and smartphones now the most popular computing devices, it will be interesting to see what new and emergent technologies become the next big thing. The fact that Cook has spoken on several occasions about his interest in VR and AR means it's a safe bet that Apple is not only in good hands, but also on the right track.

Everyone dies at exactly the right time, despite how those of us left behind may feel. While I can acknowledge that I miss Jobs' presence in this world, and the charismatic spark he brought to Apple, I can't complain. Jobs made a wise and shrewd decision by placing Apple in Cook's hands. I feel that we are all seeing the fruition of one of his last major decisions, as Apple has become a champion of human rights and continues to be a world leader in green energy implementation.

 

Everything we cherish is temporary, as are each of us. Knowing this, I can't think of a better person than Tim Cook  to have the helm at this particular moment in time. The future is never guaranteed, but for however long I have left, I look forward to seeing how Jobs' memorable "Think Different" motto continues to manifest as Apple evolves and influences our world with its principles of sustainability and justice and its inevitable innovation and technological leaps.

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Dig Om's picture

As Senior Gear Editor at iPhone Life, Dig reports on the latest and greatest accessories built for the iOS ecosystem. From rugged gear and Bluetooth speakers, to headphones, unique iDevice cases, and iOS remote controlled vehicles, Dig's articles cover a wide range of great gear for the iPhone and iPad. A core gamer for over three decades, Dig also writes iPhone Life's Game Centered column, which focuses on the best iOS games and game related news. Additionally, Dig's company, iDoc Tech Support, offers web design and administration services as well as iPhone and iPad repairs. When not at his work desk, Dig loves spending time with family and enjoying the wonders of nature. You can follow him on Twitter @idoctech