Thursday, 6 October 2011


The airwaves and cyberspace have of course been full today of the news that Steve Jobs has died. Regular readers of this blog will know that I am a signed-up, paid-up Apple user and fan. I got an iPhone shortly before my diagnosis last year and there is no doubt that it has made dealing with life considerably easier and more pleasurable than it would otherwise have been over the time that has passed since. Exaggeration? Absolutely not. It is too late now to write to the man, as I meant to do, and thank him for the difference that his visionary approach to technology design and manufacture has made to me, but I want to record my gratitude for his life and work all the same. 

It is worth seeing the wise and inspiring address Jobs gave to students at Stanford University in 2005. He delivered this after the initial diagnosis of the cancer that has now taken him from our midst. In it he had this to say about the recognition of one’s own mortality:

"Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart."

In other news: the car failed its MOT, one reason being that it had a second worn tire that Kwik Fit had not spotted and another being that the new tyre they replaced yesterday was incorrectly fitted. Mercifully the MOT garage did not charge for its labour to out these things right and we now have the certificate that will keep us legally on the road for another year.

While the car was in the shop, I called on my friend P and we talked about a variety of things over very good coffee. A fair slice of time was given over to discussing my intentions to write historical fiction and it was encouraging to find certain lines of thought I had been having independently echoed in my friend’s thinking. Just now I feel as if my mind is a sponge, absorbing facts about my central character (a real person) and facets of his times. Sooner or later, greater form and shape will have to be given to these elements, but for now the collection process feels good.

Steve Jobs (1955-2011)
This poignant take on the Apple logo, the work of a Hong Kong designer called Jonathan Mak, was in fact produced some time ago, but has apparently been causing quite a stir in cyberspace today.

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