Originally Posted by SockRolid
Originally Posted by mjtomlin
... I think Steve's real brilliance was his ability to lay out in succession all the things that needed to occur to move to the next level of whatever vision he had for the future of the company. And it played out flawlessly.
And I think Tim Cook is extremely competent and methodical and is pushing Steve's vision further, possibly further than Steve himself would have.
That's exactly what I think. I'd add that Steve was an expert in picking milestones between what Apple could ship now and what he wanted Apple to ship in the future. And in working with Jony Ive to make those milestones interesting and successful products. For example, the iMac's progression from CRT blob to all-in-one with LCD screen. I wouldn't be surprised if Steve and Jony decided that the ultimate goal would be a fully recyclable 5mm thick iMac, essentially just a screen, with wireless mouse and keyboard (and not just 5mm at the very edges). Might have been possible in 2001, but it would have cost $50K.
So what's the first practical step toward the ultimate iMac goal? Flat panel with an arm. Next step? All-in-one construction with plastic shell. Next step? Thinner all-in-one construction with aluminum shell. Next step? Thinner with no aluminum border around the screen bezel. And so it goes until the final goal is possible. Each generation makes the old one look terribly dated. Each generation is desirable and incorporates technological and design advances far beyond the previous. And I think that step-by-step development toward a pre-determined ultimate goal can be applied to iPad, iPhone, Apple TT, Beats, and all future Apple products.
At the moment, the one thing that would worry me about Apple's long term health (Tim Cook excepted) is the loss of Sir Jonathan Ive. Design is such a unique gift, like composition. Tiny changes can have a profound effect. I hope he still has many years left with Apple, and that at least one other person at Apple has the inspiration to achieve something of his brilliance.