What we must learn from Steve Jobs is that there is another path besides following the leader, (and that customer focus groups only produce the results that marketing wonks are looking for). The other lesson is to not be enslaved to fear, which is very obvious in the business plan and offerings from quite a few organizations. The third lesson is that a product should not go on sale until the design is completed. His style of creating a new product instead of a copy with a few more features is what made Apple what it is today. There is a whole lot that we can learn from him, but these are the lessons that I see as first.
I'd say that jobs did two things. He was a visionary, as so many have noted. The second thing might not be so obvious. He finished things. There are a lot of companies that produce products with essentially the same feature set. So often though, while the Apple product speaks and truly understands the user's language, the other products are essentially speaking phonetically without the real understanding of how all of those features go together.
From a distance the products may not look different, but up close, personal and in use, that extra time and thought taken makes all the difference in the world.
A Book For All Reasons Bernard Cole1 Comment Robert Oshana's recent book "Software Engineering for Embedded Systems (Newnes/Elsevier)," written and edited with Mark Kraeling, is a 'book for all reasons.' At almost 1,200 pages, it ...