Saying Goodbye to a Mentor I Never Met

By James W Quigley on October 5, 2011

“Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.”

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs Our Silent Mentor

There will be much written about Steve Jobs in the next few days, many writing from the perspective of seeing Steve in his “2nd Coming” at Apple.   But as a kid in high school, and admittedly a huge nerd, Steve and Woz took on hero status with their 1st Coming.  When the Apple II first hit the market and several of my friends were lucky enough to get their parents to buy one, I remember sitting by their side as they demonstrated what it could do and I gushed jealously.   Already enamored with technology and early computers like the TRS-80… I was hooked, sitting as my friends tapped out simple BASIC programs on their Apple II  and then ultimately getting my own computer and starting to write my own early programs.  I was taking my own first steps in a direction that would in time become my own passion/career.   For my friends and I, we were very aware that we were experiencing one of the first role models that didn’t come from our parents generation.  They spoke to our own love and belief that computing technology would change the world.     Steve would inspire with his towering visions, communicating them in over the top landscapes that would instill giggles of disbelief in some… but for those of us who believed.. it was just prophecy.   The beautiful thing is that for Steve, technology and computing was just a tool… a paint brush in a true artist’s hand and one that could change the course of the planet… and in a big way.

Throughout life, I would consume biographies and news stories on Steve en masse.  I followed his ups and downs at NEXT and his return to Apple.   I had always been openly a huge Steve junkie.   As any follower of Steve knows, he showed regularly that he was human, he had flaws… faults he admitted, and faults that framed a career where people loved to say they had worked with him… but wouldn’t do it again.  This only makes his story more perfectly…. human.  Through this all and for me, Steve crystallized what was possible if you acted with intense purpose and near fanatical passion. 

The high order bit in Steve’s story was that as he followed his own passionate vision, he not only delivered and shipped Insanely Great products he inspired others in his extended global family to do the same.  That inspiration continues to drive me and will continue to be at the heart of our passionate desire to be a force for positive, revolutionary change and it will always push us to dazzle and delight our subscribers.  

RIP Steve

Some of My Favorite Steve Moments:

8. Here’s to the crazy ones – original ad narrated by Jobs

7: Advice for Entrepreneurs



6: Introducing iPhone and Changing Phones Forever


5: Commencement Speech – Stanford 2005


4: Steve Jobs Returns to Apple – MacWorld 1997


3: A Great Look Back – 1983 Steve and Bill Together


2: Introducing the Mac for the first time


1: Steve at his best….1983 Keynote