I recently listened to this entire recording of a presentation Steve Jobs gave to a group of designers back in 1983. The blogger who posted the recording, Marcel Brown, found it interesting because, he says, Steve Jobs “predicted” the future of technology – things like the iPad and the App Store etc.
I find it interesting for a different reason. In his presentation, Jobs talks not about recruiting smarter computer and software engineers, but designers, people who can make technology relatable to the average person, people who can look at the 1s and 0s, digest them and give the masses something they could use. He understood that, yes, computers were machines but that did not mean they had to be unapproachable. Like good car design, he sought to make the computer comfortable and not just functional.
Jobs was not predicting anything in his 1983 presentation, instead, he was making it happen. He set a goal and pushed himself and everyone around him to achieve it. Through a relentless pursuit for perfection, he made his aspirations back in 1983 a reality in 2007 with the iPhone and, again, in 2010 with the release of the iPad. Jobs accomplished what he “predicted” back in 1983 because he was able to identify that computing needed a bridge to connect to people. He understood the gaps between the medium (computers) and people and inspired those around him to fill those gaps.
It is inspirational, he is irreplaceable.