This week a lot of people were saddened by the news that Steve Jobs was resigning as Apple’s CEO. For many years Jobs has been seen as an integral and fundamental part of Apple and its driving force.
While it is certainly true that Jobs was responsible for Apple’s turn around, he did it with the help of a group of dedicated professionals. These people, who have been working for years with Jobs are part of his most impressive creation: Apple itself. Apple is a company that works differently from just about every other company in the planet. That is not simply the result of one man’s actions, regardless of how brilliant the man in question is. Apple has a culture all of its own which will not change, because Jobs is now Chairman of the Board instead of CEO.
In the near and mid-term future we can expect Apple to continue releasing amazing products which build on the incredible success of its current lineup of products, while they continue to work in secrecy on the products that fit with what they believe the future should be like. I remember commenting, a long time ago, that it wasn’t hard for Bill Gates to foretell the future, as he could help direct it. That was never so true for Microsoft as it has become for Apple.
Apple now defines not only what it will do, but what everybody else will try to imitate. This does not likely to change in the near future, as they work on the next generation iPad, while everybody else is still scrambling to catch up with the iPad 2.