Thinking Different: Thank You, Mr. Jobs
Thinking Different: Thank You, Mr. Jobs
Thinking Different: Thank You, Mr. Jobs

When Stephanie Schwab emailed last night to ask if we should do a collective post to pay our respects to Steve Jobs today, I resisted. I didn’t want Social Media Explorer to have just another post saying the same things everyone else was saying. I wanted us to stand out. In a way, I was doing what Steve Jobs taught us all to do: Think Different.

But I’m not an insensitive ass and Steve Jobs had a seismic impact on our world. Collectively, we echo this pithy post on Facebook last night from my old high school buddy John Stanley:


Here are our thoughts:

“If we had royalty in America, Steve Jobs would be it. As an entrepreneur and visionary, he’s changed all of our lives, whether we’re Apple fans or not. He taught us that we can dream anything and make it happen, even when the path seems uncertain. He made us laugh and cry at bunches of pixels on a movie screen. And yes, he created beautiful things that work well and inspire devotion; things which make it possible for my 97-year-old grandfather to use email and Facebook and for my 3-year-old son to easily see his grandparents across the country whenever he wants to. As a consumer, I’m unabashedly a fan; as an entrepreneur, I’m inspired. My heart is with Jobs’ family, friends and employees.”

 — Stephanie Schwab

“The world of innovation will be forever changed from Steve’s contributions. May he rest in peace and watch from above as the next prodigy is found.”

 — Nichole Kelly

“Relative to others living in the Silicon Valley, I was a late comer when it came to knowing of Steve Jobs. It was my first Apple purchase only 7 years or so ago that opened my eyes to what it really meant to design an outstanding experience around something people use. Not soon after I became enamored with learning about the company that is Apple and the artist, Steve Jobs.

I was amazed at Mr. Jobs’ ability to communicate, to rally like minded individuals to his vision and to create. Not only did he create incredible products, but he went beyond that. He created great experiences, platforms and even entire industries. Not every product was a hit. Not every move a winner, but he always remained infallible. He understood the vision that was unseen by his competitors, critics and customers. It was clear to him. He believed in it and that’s ultimately what mattered.

As I said, I saw Mr. Jobs as an artist. An artist as much like Leonardo DiVinci as Thomas Edison. As a creative professional, he has inspired me to look at the greater vision and create from the heart. Create not just to make a buck, but to make an impact. Living less than 20 miles from me, I wish that I had the opportunity to meet him. To tell him how appreciative a fellow creative was of his work. Most of all, I wish he was still around so that I may continue to appreciate the work of one of the greatest leaders, salesman, artists of the last decade. Thank you for sharing with us your art Steve Jobs.”

 — Adam Helweh

“By all accounts Steve Jobs was one of the greatest innovators and business leaders in recent history. As much as his legacy will forever be associated with a company and their products, I believe his greatest gift was showing us a glimpse of what’s possible when you are driven by passion and a vision. I found this quote particularity poignant: ‘Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me … Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful … that’s what matters to me.'”

 — Mark Smiciklas

“Steve Jobs taught us that it doesn’t have to be the way it is. He revolutionized technology, design, marketing, product development, entrepreneurship and entertainment. And even though many have studied, dissected and analyzed his accomplishments, they still look like magic.”

 — Ilana Rabinowitz

“The History of Steve Jobs will forever be clouded by the Mystery of Steve Jobs.

He will go down as an irreplaceable force of creative vision, and years from now, people will still be wondering what would have happened if he’d just been given a few more years. In doing so, they will miss the truth about the man.

  1. His professional achievements were a product of his desire to finish. He knew his health better than anyone, and has known for years that his days were few. He ought to be celebrated for maximizing that time, and bringing so many projects to completion.
  2. His “secret sauce” is not unique. His Mystique was. Steve Jobs the Persona was bulletproof and undefeated, capable of turning imagination into reality like no one since Walt Disney. Steve Jobs the man was just like everyone else, with one exception: a gift for self-actualization — being able to squeeze the most out of the available resources, and not stopping until the cup was filled to overflowing. He made a lot of money through the merchandising of products and services, but what he really sold was The Illusion of Completeness. You bought from Apple because of your belief in him that nothing more could be done, that each parcel was a pinnacle. And next year, with cheaper parts and faster processors, that pinnacle was moving higher and you weren’t Complete until you had upgraded as well.

The biggest irony of his passing is the true vulnerability of Apple. The better he did at inculcating the above qualities in the rest of Apple culture, the more people there looked up to him. Which makes his passing even more acute in perception than it is in reality. “Apple” will be just fine, but it will never be Jobs’ Apple again. (Another pitfall of Personal Branding.)”

 — Ike Pigott

“As a baby boomer, I can’t remember a time Steve Jobs wasn’t influencing my life-he was my generation’s poster boy, the guy who got it right. Many of us came of age in the business world along with the personal computer revolution he led. His brilliant work fueled a technology revolution that would change the way we work, play and live. Later he reinvented the way we communicate, listen to music and entertain ourselves-and he did it with an amazing flair for design and quality rare in Silicon Valley (where I worked for 15 years). He made all of us reach a little higher, work a little harder, dream a little bigger. He proved that innovation, focus and persistence still pays off, and even a college dropout can go on to reshape the world–if they believe, truly believe, in themselves.

‘Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become.’ (2005 Commencement Speech, Stanford University)”

— Mark Ivey

As for me? I think now is the time to re-cut this commercial and add one more person to the reel:

Thank you, Mr. Jobs. For making sure we are inspired to think differently.

Rest in peace, good sir.

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About the Author

Jason Falls
Jason Falls is the founder of Social Media Explorer and one of the most notable and outspoken voices in the social media marketing industry. He is a noted marketing keynote speaker, author of two books and unapologetic bourbon aficionado. He can also be found at
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  • Jobs was such a great human being and his loss cannot be replaced by any one to his family nor to the industry…And by the way great video.

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  • Very good post and an inspiring video, thanks for shearing this guys.

  • Thanks Jason! I liked the video you embedded the best. Inspiring. Thanks for being real. 
    – Andrea Cook

  • In my eyes, his most profound gift to society is inspiring us to live our lives in a way that is more spectacular, more elegant, more “stuffed with the stuff that is fine” as Walt Whitman said, than we could ever dream, heck, ever dare to dream. The tools were never really primarily about surfing the web, or writing an e-mail. They were about us creating a better world in a better way. And now he’s gone. It maybe wouldn’t feel so damn sad if we saw more people like him out there.

  • Nice tributes. I’m with you – can’t ignore it, but how do you “Think Different” about a man whose successes were everywhere? (I tried on the Area 224 blog today. Here’s a link:

    Nice to see a variety of perspectives here. Well done.


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