I find myself bemused by all the hoo-hah over the death of Steve Jobs. Yes, he was a great innovator, and yes, he build an impressive brand, but it’s nothing more than many others have achieved. I’m wondering if, for example, when Thomas Edison died, people placed stacks of electric lightbulbs outside his lab at Menlo Park? Or if, when James Dyson (inventor of the bagless vacuum cleaner) dies, people will leave bits of their old hoovers outside branches of Curry’s across the country? I don’t think so. But Jobs did nothing more than Dyson and a lot less than Edison. He just spent more on marketing.
In fact, I have a bit of an issue with the whole Mac thing. I see a direct comparison with the Dyson vacuum cleaner. Both are extremely expensive pieces of kit compared to the other options in the market. Both cannot be maintained with off-the-shelf parts. Both are well-engineered, highly capable machines which are vastly over-powered for the needs of the average user. And both sell by the bucketload on the basis of clever marketing.
The Mac is essential if you are a graphic designer. It’s no coincidence that Jobs founded Pixar. Pixar probably wouldn’t be able to exist if it wasn’t for the Mac. Graphic designers need a lot of welly in their machine. Joe Blogs (or should that be Jobs?) doesn’t design computer animations and doesn’t need the oomph which is the real strength of the Mac. The same goes for the Dyson, which offers industrial strength hoovering. Graphic designers with five cats, four dogs, two kids and three floors of shag-pile carpet probably do need a Dyson – and a Mac. Otherwise, it’s all about the marketing.
Song of the day
I’m not keen on Bjork, and I don’t like this tune too much either; mostly because it’s always the first track played at my Pilates class. Ah well. Tomorrow is another day.
- Guest Post: Sir James Dyson’s ‘Apple Moment’ (wired.com)