I’m struck by the irony of Steve Jobs’ death the day after Apple’s most recent unveiling of its newest products (among them, the largely disappointing iPhone 4s). Honestly, I’m a bit conflicted about how Jobs has changed our world.
What could life have looked like without Steve Jobs… and how could that help us be more intentional in living well today with the technology he’s given us?
On one hand, I love my iPhone 4 and am sold-out to my Macbook. The technology Jobs developed is simply unmatched, in my very non-professional opinion. He was probably the most visionary leader of my generation, only possibly matched by Bill Gates (sorry Zuckerberg). The personal computer, the iPod, iPhone, iPad, and even Pixar… his fingerprints seem to be all over our American culture.
On the other hand, people are so disconnected today I wonder how that would be different if we didn’t have so much technology to pull us in so many directions all at once. I remember a chapel speaker in college pointing out how we’re never fully present anywhere because we’re so distracted… and that was in 2001 when AOL was mainstream!
I’m not getting rid of my iPhone or my iPod or my Macbook and I’m probably not getting rid of Facebook either. But hearing about Steve Jobs’ passing has caused me to think more carefully about what life might look like had he not given us so much wonderful technology. May we be good and faithful stewards of what we’ve received.
May we use technology to build relationships and to grow in wisdom rather than using them as a crutch from doing the hard work of really listening to the people we’re with and simply Googling answers to questions rather than actually learning those answers.