For those of us who grew up in the orchards of Silicon Valley where Apple took seed, we will always remember with awe and wonder that adopted kid who amazed us with his impish grin and effervescent drive, a kid who knew no limits, who knew no glass ceilings in a valley where engineering credentials are everything. Here was a guy who looked like us, talked like us, and dreamed like us, but invented like a wizard.
He was Silicon Valley incarnate, the magician who consistently pulled rabbits out of hats when the going got rough and all hopes were dashed and nearly gone. But, magically, like Daruma, he would bounce back, again and again, showing us that anything is possible if one is willing to focus, work hard and insist on perfection. For that, we have much to be grateful for. Steve showed us that it’s not your pedigree — your family, your degrees, your job title, your salary — that counts, but your imagination, passion and drive. Without that, one is nothing but an empty shell with empty titles. He showed us the Zen of awesome design.
As one who lives and breathes by your Apple products, I just want to thank you, Steve. Thanks for sharing your gifts and showing us the true greatness of Silicon Valley’s spirit of inventiveness. Thanks for showing the world that we “country bumpkins” can create something priceless and memorable. Thanks for lighting the way when the darkness of conformity and imitation blighted the electronics industry. Without you and your band of merry inventors, we would be just another faceless California suburb using even more forgettable products.
As you meet our Creator, we will always remember “One More Thing” — your final lines at your Stanford commencement speech in 2005 — when you reminded us to “Stay hungry. Stay foolish.” For it is in the wizardry of the Magician that you taught us the wisdom of the Fool.