Ask the GeekTechers: How Steve Jobs Impacted Our Lives

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Steve Jobs introduces the original iPad. [Photo: Melissa Perenson, PCWorld]
It seems weird, to some extent, to reflect on the life of a man few in tech blogging knew personally. But Steve Jobs had an enormous impact on the world we live in. We write using computers that bear his influence and call on phones that have his virtual fingerprints all over them--regardless of the logo on the back. And we live in a world that bears Steve's indelible mark.

There will be plenty of time for pundits to dissect Jobs's life, to ponder his legacy, and to get into the business inside-baseball of what Jobs's death means for the tech industry. But we're not interested in any of that. Instead, we wanted to take a few minutes to share a little bit about how Steve Jobs impacted and influenced our own lives. Read on, and feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.

Elizabeth Fish: "I think my earliest memory of Apple is the numerous lunch breaks at school spent in the Macintosh suite, playing around with the Macintosh LC II. While I didn't appreciate Macs at the time, it just occurred to me that pretty much all my technology products are Apple. For me, Steve was an inspirational man that achieved so much throughout his life, it's saddening to refer to him in past tense. The tech industry has just lost a huge player, as well as the artistic flare and vision it always had in Jobs."

Chris Brandrick: "Jobs's role in modern computing will never be forgotten; the devoted Apple fans around the world who are flocking to their local Apple Store to pay tribute show this in great strength. Would any other CEO of any other company move and inspire so many people? It's hard to say.

"Sure, he got things wrong, but had the conviction to realize, adapt, and reiterate. This visible, borderline-obsessive strive for perfection resulted in the greatest consumer technology to date. The admiration I have for my iPhone and MacBook Pro prove this to me everyday."

Jason Kennedy: "My first experience with a Mac was an old IIe; a friend and I spent most of summer vacation building a custom map on an ancient RTS game and then playing on it. It was the best computer I'd even seen at the time, so advanced for what it was. It blew my Amiga out of the water. Later, I owned an iPhone 3GS that I loved (I admit, iTunes killed it for me) and I regularly use my girlfriend's iPad. There's no denying that Steve Jobs and his handiwork have changed the world."

Nick Mediati: "I don't have too much to say, but I will say that there aren't many people in the world who I'd consider to be my role models. Steve Jobs, though, would be one of those people. I admired his singular vision, his attention to detail, and the fact that he demanded the best not only from those around him, but from himself, too. More than anything else, this lasting legacy of Jobs made the biggest impact on me."

Joshua Schnell shared his thoughts at "One man changed the way we listen to music, the way we read the news, the way we share our lives with others. He, along with the other Steve, put computers in our homes, music in our pockets, and most recently gave us a better phone, a modern phone. He innovated where no one thought innovation could happen. He did it with vigour and a passion that I can only hope I can match some day." Read on...

Albert Filice: "Three years ago, when I first started college, I was a diehard PC/Windows fan. Halfway through my freshman year, after getting a taste of Mac OS X by way of a Hackintosh, I got my first MacBook. It was the black matte MacBook and I had to trade a Dell XPS, an 8GB iPod touch, and a PlayStation 2 for it. I never regretted that decision, and a year later I traded up to a 2009 MacBook Pro, the computer I still use today. Thinking back on all the amazing things I've done with Apple products makes me realize the impact that Apple and Steve Jobs had on my life."

Mike Keller: "My job would literally not exist without Steve. I am an iOS developer and a lifelong Apple user. I've been using Macs about as long as I could read; my dad would bring home his work computer and was hard pressed to get any work done with his son glued to that monochromatic screen. I remember skipping school to watch streaming Macworld keynotes--the excitement I felt when Steve announced "one more thing…" was like Christmas morning to me. Steve Jobs and the company that only he could build inspired me to study Computer Science and for that I am forever thankful."

This story, "Ask the GeekTechers: How Steve Jobs Impacted Our Lives" was originally published by PCWorld.

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