Had a day to think about it, and realized I wouldn’t have this career if it wasn’t for Steve Jobs. Aside from a brief dalliance with a Commodore VIC-20, Apples were my first computers. It was messing around on my Dad’s Lisa converted to a Mac Plus that revealed my troubleshooting skills at an early age. I’ve helped the Old Man out with every single Mac he’s ever owned, from that(admittedly very shitty) Lisa Plus to his PowerBook 140, Mac SE30, Quadra, Mac II, Power Mac 7300, G3, G4, several iBooks and a bunch of random other stuff he’s come across over the years. Also introduced some family issues caused by having to be de facto tech support for all of that stuff but that’s a different therapy session.
All of that got me into my first real tech job as a bench tech up in Charlotte. I knew enough to be dangerous, but could learn hellaciously fast. That got my foot in the door here at the newspaper. Well that and applying 3 different times. It was this corporate experience that brought me into the UNIX/LINUX world but I wouldn’t have the fascination to try to figure out the inner workings if it wasn’t for Mac OS X. It wasn’t quite as user friendly back in the 10.0 and 10.1 days. If you wanted something to work, chances are you were going to have to compile it yourself until someone created a wrapper for it. It was from that I learned how to compile programs on my own, and sometimes do a little code fixing. I’m still no programmer but I wouldn’t have picked up what I know without these experiences.
Yes, I use Windows computers at home, I carry a rooted Droid in my pocket, a hacked Nook Color is my tablet of choice but I love my iPod and still use a Mac for whatever I do at work, even if I am in a Windows VM most of the time. Like many millions of people around the world, what Steve Jobs created has shaped my life. For both good and bad.
So I guess what I’m saying is: Thanks, Steve. Rest in peace, you mad genius.