Friday, October 7, 2011

Farewell Steve Jobs from The Customer Institute

It is with great sadness that we at The Customer Institute bid farewell to Steve Jobs. While he is praised for many accomplishments, such as a successful businessman by turning Apple around a tits lowest point, then co-founding NeXT and Pixar. But, in our eyes, Steve Jobs was the most visionary creator of products that were focused on the customer.

Steve Jobs appears to have had the insight to see what customers wanted and needed before they did. He was relentless to produce the perfect customer-focused product. He took the "techy" aspect of computers out of the computer and gave customers a product that they could use and enjoy without being a "techy."

One has only to look back at the evolution of computers to see that for most of the 40 plus years of computing (late 40s to mid 80s), computers needed people to write code that the computer could understand. Without very specific training, the computer would ignore you and there was no way that it would respond without the intervention of a "techy."

Of course from the 40s through the late 70s, computers were too expensive for the average person. A basic IBM 1620 Scientific computer would rent for about $10,000 per month (not counting input/output devices). As the personal computer came on the scene and the cost of computing dramatically decrease, it was still a nightmare for the average person to understand the coding of MSDOS. Still the computer for the average person was out-of-reach.

With the advent of the first Macintosh, the blinders of technology were lifted so that the ordinary person could connect with the computer without the resident knowledge of computer code or MSDOS. Steve Jobs saw that the computer was not just for the "techy." He became the transformer - the one who changed the way that computers interfaced with people. He was the ultimate architect of human engineering that built computers for people.

Thank you Steve Jobs. You brought the computer to us In a way that we now see the computer as a tool that increases our productivity and provides a never-ending opportunity to improve our lives. He was the ultimate customer advocate!

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