09 October 2011

The Onion's tribute to Steve Jobs

This was the title of The Onion's article:

Last American Who Knew What The Fuck He Was Doing Dies

And this is the text:
Steve Jobs, the visionary co-founder of Apple Computers and the only American in the country who had any clue what the fuck he was doing, died Wednesday at the age of 56. "We haven't just lost a great innovator, leader, and businessman, we've literally lost the only person in this country who actually had his shit together and knew what the hell was going on," a statement from President Barack Obama read in part, adding that Jobs will be remembered both for the life-changing products he created and for the fact that he was able to sit down, think clearly, and execute his ideas—attributes he shared with no other U.S. citizen. "This is a dark time for our country, because the reality is none of the 300 million or so Americans who remain can actually get anything done or make things happen. Those days are over." Obama added that if anyone could fill the void left by Jobs it would probably be himself, but said that at this point he honestly doesn’t have the slightest notion what he’s doing anymore.
I can't write anything about him that hasn't already been written elsewhere, but I'll note that much of what I've accomplished in the last 25 years has been done on Apple computers.  I was a relatively early adopter, purchasing a Mac Plus (2 MB RAM, 20 MB storage!) in about 1986 when the company offered nice discounts to university faculty.  Since then every handout I prepared for students, every PowerPoint slide I made for lectures, every manuscript I wrote or reviewed was done on a Mac, as well as every letter home and every evening of gameplaying and eventually every post on my blogs.  I have a lot to thank him for.


  1. As do I. A Windows bigot until 2004, I finally converted to Apple when I saw a visiting scientist's sleek aluminum PowerBook laptop sitting next to my clunky black plastic Dell. Yes, sex appeal had everything to do with it. But when I actually used the OS X operating system, that was the end of my tolerance for Windows and PC clones. Since then I've converted my wife, my brother-in-law, and several friends. But is it really a conversion when all I did was let them use my computer?

    Steve Jobs wanted people to actually enjoy computers and tech. He built for the user, not the focus group or the shareholders' bottom line. That was his greatest skill, and one that no other tech corporation has ever been able to copy. Nor wlll they, so long as they can only look ahead to the next quarter.

    May the tech gods save us from a post-Apple world where our only options are heavy, clunky black plastic boxes, or somewhat lighter clunky black plastic boxes. All approved by the focus groups, of course.

  2. "I have a lot to thank him for."
    And of course for children in China, who are working in the factories day and night to fulfill hardware needs of Apple, and the rest...

  3. At the risk of violating the maxim "De mortuis nil nisi bonum" I will add this blog post that argues in favor of @Kcencziken's point.

  4. He was often mean to others, he was late to make efforts to limit damage to the environment, child labor and didn't give generously to charity.


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