Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

The American GeniusThe American Genius

Opinion Editorials

Response to the very public “I Quit” open letters to Apple

(EDITORIAL) What is it that has some Apple employees so dissatisfied they’re going public with their emotional responses? Let’s discuss.

apple

Thirty years of Apple’s vision

Steve Jobs was a true business visionary, and the greatest marketer who has ever lived. Apple is a genuine wonder of the marketing art: a single, sustained, successful narrative for thirty blinking years!

Meaningful market share with one narrative for better than thirty years isn’t “good.” That’s crazy. That’s genius. It’s crazy. And that’s almost certainly the first positive thing I have ever written, spoken or communicated by expressive body language about Apple or Steve Jobs.

bar

Tech in the veins

See, I’m a tech guy. In fact, I’m a third generation techie. Literally. My grandfather programmed computers when programming computers meant putting punch cards on one of these. My father was vital in the implementation – if that’s what we’re calling that – of OS/2, IBM’s entry into the operating system market. It tanked. Not OS/2. OS/2 absolutely tanked, don’t get me wrong; I’m saying IBM tanked.

The company that invented personal computing wiped the hard drive, hired a guy from Nabisco and started from scratch, in large part because of the product my father was asked to roll out. It wasn’t his fault, I promise.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Me, I’m the black sheep. English degree, haven’t worn a necktie in ten years. But I haven’t entirely betrayed the binary in my blood: I can hack in HTML, “hello world” in Java and, most importantly, I have never, not once in my life, voluntarily given money to Apple.

Apple is not for the tinkerer

Anybody within two degrees of separation of a practicing geek won’t be surprised by that last part. Anybody who isn’t? Geeks hate Apple. It’s nothing to be proud of, it simply is.

In part, it’s the reason geeks hate anything: we can’t futz with it.

Apple is designed to be used as presented. It is not to be customized, reformatted or experimented upon.

These words are dork blasphemy. My personal workstation is so nightmarishly custom, anybody else who wanted to use it would optimize their productivity by forgoing its use in favor of beating me about the head and shoulders with it until I do what they ask.

But mostly – it’s that we can’t futz with it. Isn’t that strange? Apple, right? Be yourself! Dance in silhouettes! Throw hammers at authoritarian video screens! But don’t change any aspect of our design, and don’t so much as glance at our code. Think different?

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Folks are.

Emphatically.

The vision isn’t what it was

There’s this phrase geeks know: “reality distortion field.” Sounds Star Trek, right? Well, it is. It’s also a real thing. In the words of Andy Hertzfeld, architect of the original Mac OS, RDF is:

“…a confounding mélange of a charismatic rhetorical style, an indomitable will, and an eagerness to bend any fact to fit the purpose at hand. If one line of argument failed to persuade, he would deftly switch to another. Sometimes, he would throw you off balance by suddenly adopting your position as his own, without acknowledging that he ever thought differently.”

He?

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Look at the last two words.

Steve Jobs, of course.

“A confounding mélange of a charismatic rhetorical style, an indomitable will, and an eagerness to bend any fact to fit the purpose at hand” is a working synonym of “greatest marketer who has ever lived.” Jobs was a visionary. His Apple was a vision, a statement of how things should work. Interlocking, smooth, open. Different.

To date, the fact that Apple products do not work in that way has not meaningfully impacted its market share.

But Jobs passed. That remarkable mind is now elsewhere. The RDF is powering down, and employees seem to be feeling its absence. There’s an old techie motto they seem to be embracing instead.

Think.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

#Apple

Written By

Matt Salter is a writer and former fundraising and communications officer for nonprofit organizations, including Volunteers of America and PICO National Network. He’s excited to put his knowledge of fundraising, marketing, and all things digital to work for your reading enjoyment. When not writing about himself in the third person, Matt enjoys horror movies and tabletop gaming, and can usually be found somewhere in the DFW Metroplex with WiFi and a good all-day breakfast.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Pingback: Where are we at with the smart home IoT takeover? #rollcall - The Real Daily

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Advertisement

The
American Genius
news neatly in your inbox

Subscribe to our mailing list for news sent straight to your email inbox.

Advertisement

KEEP READING!

Tech News

Elon Musk is the hottest trending name in news, now involving himself in a scandal with Apple, and suddenly siding with Spotify and Epic...

Tech News

Apple has been working internally on a brand new product outfitted with a brand new operating system with unique mixed-reality elements.

Tech News

Those in frontline jobs are not strangers to unions, from retail to tech to food and beverage. The latest to vote are Apple employees...

Business News

Since Morgan Stanley has been tracking the revenue of Apple's App Store in 2015, the company faced it's largest revenue decline of 5%.

The American Genius is a strong news voice in the entrepreneur and tech world, offering meaningful, concise insight into emerging technologies, the digital economy, best practices, and a shifting business culture. We refuse to publish fluff, and our readers rely on us for inspiring action. Copyright © 2005-2022, The American Genius, LLC.