The media is playing the death of Steve Jobs in a way I haven't seen since John Lennon, treating him as a sort of secular saint and calling him the modern Edison.
Not that groundbreaking, as this nice Rick Newman obit notes. He's not quite Edison, more like Tesla with a second and third act. The first act, inventing the Apple and the Mac, was a bit like Tesla, who did a lot of innovating but lost out on the really big bucks to IBM and Microsoft. Apple perfected the modern PC, but IBM put it on office desks and Microsoft's DOS running on IBM clones brought the price point down to consumer levels.
Jobs then had a decade hiatus from Apple, in which time he gave us Pixar; not bad for a second act, but the third act was a doozy, turning Apple into a mobile electronics giant. There was a bit of a role reversal for Apple; now,they were popularizing gizmos rather than inventing them.
There were smart phones before the iPhone, MP3 players before the iPod and notepad computers before the iPad. However,they popularized all three, giving a cache that was both trendy and mature at the same time. Even then, Apple wasn't able to expand its desktop and laptop sales too much, as Jobs wanted to keep Apple's OS proprietary, scrapping a plan to have Apple clones available.
I've yet to enter that universe as a user. My laptop has my MP3 stash, and I have yet to get a smartphone or a pad-computer; however, that will probably change the next time I replace my cell-phone, for the entry-level iPhones or their Android rivals are now the freebie-with-a-renewal phones these days.
Before we knew of Jobs' passing, I saw this piece on the Corner about the Wall Street protesters and their allies-
I might have told him that if he really wanted to “protest capitalism,” he could start by ditching his $2,000 MacBook Pro, which is produced by one of the largest corporations on the planet — Apple (AAPL) — currently trading at more than $370 a share, on Wall Street.
Apple has something of a near-cult following that leans a bit left but doesn't exclude the right, other than occasionally getting PC over some more pointed anti-gay aps and podcasts. The new high priest of the cult presided over a new iPhone earlier in the week, but he likely won't have Jobs' iconic status.