Thursday, October 06, 2011

R.I.P. Steve Jobs and thanks for all of it!

I remember my first encounter with an Apple Mac. I had just left IBM in May of 1986 after 18 years of service and deciding it was time to leave Vermont and come to the Bay area and be part of the excitement and improved weather from the harshness of Vermont winters. The last thing I bought as an employee was the IBM Personal Computer XT, as I got it with the employee discount. To my surprise, in only a few months in San Francisco, the damn thing started falling apart. Eventually everything but the metal frame didn't work. I had to replace the computer and decided to go with my first Apple Mac. Since that moment I have never been dissatisfied with my Apple products, as you see I was converted into an Apple zealot. I have never looked back at any other equipment other than a Mac since.

As one of my early consultant gigs, I was fortunate to get Apple as a client in 1987 and I remember the excitement I felt walking into Apple and seeing groups of people working with chart paper and easels and colored markers contributing to a brainstorming exercise of new product ideas. The place vibrated and I felt privileged just to see it first hand and be a small part of it. I did a number of sessions for Apple management into 1989 and I met there what was to be one of my best clients ever. He was an IT mid level Director who was smart, cared about his people a lot, had the highest integrity and was the kind of person I was proud to know. I knew he had something special going for him and I just enjoyed his way of working with people. No, it wasn't Steve, but he was the kind of person at Apple that made it be one of the best companies in America.

It was a privilege to go into a company where you felt that excitement and knew something special was happening there. I had had that feeling only once before and that was when I worked on the development of the Heat Shield for the Apollo program, but I have never had that feeling again since Apple. Steve Jobs helped change the world and the way we look at and use technology in it. He changed my world too.

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Anonymous Alan said...

that is a great story. apple created so much for all of us, never asked for a hand out, and was a job-creation machine second to none in the valley directly and through the ecosystem

7:47 AM  
Blogger Charles Amico said...

Thanks Alan. Much appreciated. Do you know who that mid level IT person was that was my client and whom I spoke so highly?

10:13 AM  

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