"Apple has yet to acknowledge a problem"
From the iBook's perpetual video chip problem to the 1.25 Ghz 15 inch G4 Aluminum Powerbook's Top Ram Slot failures, there are a host of malfunctions that have plagued certain Apple Products. Many times, to the dissapointment of it's users Apple has refused to recognize the problems. And there seems one more very sad problem that yet today "Apple has yet to acknowledge....." Steve Job's health.
This month at the World Wide Developers Conference Steve Jobs gave the Keynote speech on the new 3G iPhone. If you did not see it, find photos at least. Not of the phone, but of Steve himself. He doesn't look good. A few years back he was diagnosed with a rare form of Pancreatic Cancer. Not something many people survive. Nothing was said of his condition until 9 months after his treatments had ended. It seemed he had pulled the miraculous. As if he had rebooted in open firmware and did the "reset_nvram reset_all". But looking at his condition at the conference suggests otherwise. His publicist states that he has been fighting a long cold... I don't think so. I hope so, believe me I wish no ilk upon him. I really hope that all he needs to do is drink his juice. But if indeed it is the cancer taking over, I shall feel bad not for Apple's future, I shall feel bad for the future of his dream.
Most of Jobs' life has been involved with Apple. Even when he was gone he lamented his departure. Everything he has done for Apple in the last 10 years has been to further not only the company, and not only technology, but to make our lives what they should to become. Because of his influence, aren't there thousands of us that have made music we never dreamed possible using Garageband. And which among us have home movies on DVD that never would have been enjoyed years from now, if not for iMovie. And isn't it amazing to have all your music on one computer at your command. Apple is a lifestyle. That's why PC users detest the "Mac-head" We are annoying. We are "legion". They understand "us" about as much as Al Gore would understand the audience at a Monster Truck Rally. But we are passionate because using Apple has really changed lives. No, rather it's augmented lives. It's made life better by affording us possibilities to reach a higher potential.
I fear that Steve Jobs may be relinquishing that dream into the hands of some hopefully capeable people. If he is indeed sick, I hope Apple has a better handle on things than when the Beatle's manager Brian Epstein died in 1967. The band lost it's focus and began to make some very ill treated financial decisions. Not that they stopped making good music, they just weren't good at managing the details (well, Paul at least). If jobs is in his final months of pancreatic cancer, I hope that Apple stays focussed on his dream.... not to make products, rather to make people more productive. His avoidance of the obvious question... "Steve, what's up, are you OK?" seems to follow in line with Apple's history of "failing to acknowledge the problem" But I don't believe it's wholly avoidance, I think Jobs wishes to be a part of that dream without the encumbering drama of sickness for as long as he can and in as many ways as he can. I hope he indeed only has a cold.