A few years ago I went to see the movie “The Fast and the Furious”. I remember watching it for about 20 mins and not having any idea what it was about or where it was going. Then it hit me. I turned to the person sitting next to me and said. “Oh I get it. This IS the movie!”. It was in fact just people driving cars fast and trying to be cool. That’s all there is to it.
Sometimes we overcomplicate things and it gets us in trouble. I got to thinking about this again today when I was thinking about the history of Apple computer. From the beginning Apple had the cool thing down. 2 guys in a garage, bucking the system etc. The Lisa and Mac were so cool I drug people down to the computer store to show them this whole “Mouse” thing.

As soon as you saw the original Mac you wanted one. You may not have had any idea what for but you wanted it. It was cool. The problem is that never seemed like a business strategy. I think that’s why the Sugar water king was brought in and why Apple went through a series of executive changes which drug the company deeper and deeper into a hole. They wanted some kind of grand strategy. They wanted to make sense.
When Jobs came back he did alot of things right. Killed off lots of the product line. Decided not to care about backwards compatiblity with Hardware no one wanted anyway. Oh and there was that whole iPod thing.

But the most important thing was to remind people that the Mac is cool and that’s really all there is to it. OSX isn’t really better than XP. The insides of OSX or the Apple Hardware aren’t really any better/different than the competition but Wow is the packaging and UI way cooler.






2 responses to “Simplicity”

  1. Pokie Avatar

    Overall, true, although the story is far more complicated. Jobs has made plenty of mistakes. Remember the Lisa? And plenty of the “cool” things were made elsewhere (the mouse) or invented while he was gone (the powerbook, QuickTime, for example). Still, no question, Jobs is a great product marketing guy, and a great deal of Apple’s success is industrial design, image and branding in which Steve gets very involved.

  2. bricetebbs Avatar

    Yeah, I don’t think Jobs should get credit for everything and there were failures and successes along the way. The Lisa didnt make money but it did personally change my whole view of what a computer can be.

    It wasn’t meant to be a full history. If it was it would have to describe the repeated failure of apple to create a follow on os, the total silliness of licensing MacOS (how do you license cool?) and other stuff.

    What I find the most amazing about his Steveness is the ability to maintain the idea that Apple is cool, despite the fact that many of thier actions in the area of DRM and other legal issues are evil.

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