Friday, October 7, 2011

PortaStyle Guide...Steve Jobs' Real Smarts!

Steve Jobs'
‘Real Smarts’
By Patrick Grant!


Steve Jobs'
"Real Smarts"

I rather liked Steve Jobs and very much admired what he did. I liked his uniform, I liked that in his day he wore the odd bow tie and I liked that despite latterly dabbling in stubble he had earlier been a beard wearer. I loved that he was obsessed with and passionate about every single aspect of what Apple said and did. That kind of single-mindedness makes me smile.

There's currently a lot of hyperbole surrounding his achievements as an innovator or inventor. Steven Spielberg went as far as to say that " Steve Jobs was the greatest inventor since Thomas Edison." This isn't true. He didn't invent the telephone, radio communications, the computer (or even the personal computer) or the internet.

But Steve Jobs was a brilliant marketer; he could spot great technologies and see the ways in which people might use them. He knew that by making technical objects beautiful, and by showing us the world in which man and his gadget co-existed in harmony, that people would subscribe. Moreover he knew how to articulate his vision in a way that millions of people would understand. This was Jobs' great gift. In a world of awkward unloveables, Jobs was a man we were happy to listen to.

But as much as I like Steve Jobs, I have found myself increasingly disliking Apple. Again, it's the hyperbole. I don't like the way it talks to me like it's the smartest and the coolest kid on the block. I don't like its insistence that its products make the world a better place. Yes, Apple owners love their products; I love the Dualit toaster - so what? I did at least respect Apple with Jobs at the helm. I'm not sure how long I'll feel that way without him.

What Jobs did do that was truly great was show all of us who work in the world of designing and making things that no matter how outwardly ordinary a product is you can make people love it by making it beautiful and functional. With this he did us all a great big favour.

Patrick Grant is director of Norton & Sons and E Tautz and blogs weekly for;

Online editing by Jamie Millar
Photo Credit: Rex Features





Thought different forever!

the portastylistic

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