It’s been 30-years since Steve Jobs introduced his Macintosh at the John Hancock Hall in Boston on January 30, 1984, when about 1,000 computer professionals came to listen to a 28-year-old rising star. At the time, some were still skeptical of what Jobs was offering, but he was still welcomed with a loud ovation. As we now know, the Macintosh and Jobs helped change the world, and he became one of the most influential people in modern history.
Jobs’ unveiling of his Macintosh computer and the manner in which he spoke that day influenced those attending the historic presentation more than they might have anticipated. Steve Jobs, with a team of Apple Macintosh engineers standing next to him, gave an impassioned speech which inspired Les Squires to start his own successful software company.
“I was overcome with a real kind of enthusiasm, and I walked out of that room totally inspired,” said 68-year-old Les Squires, who was unemployed at the time.
In light of the 30th anniversary of Steve Jobs’ unveiling of the Macintosh, one of the most transformational products in history, we remember some of his best known quotes about many topics, from thoughts about life and death to the importance of taking risks.
On life and death:
“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.”
On creating something of quality:
“When you’re a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you’re not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will see it. You’ll know it’s there, so you’re going to use a beautiful piece of wood on the back. For you to sleep well at night, the aesthetic, the quality, has to be carried all the way through.”
On taking risks:
“You’ve got to be willing to crash and burn. If you’re afraid of failing, you won’t get very far. Most people never pick up the phone and call. Most people never ask, and that’s what separates the people who do things from the people who just dream about them.”
On those who don’t fit the mold:
“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The trouble-makers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently…they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius.”
On finding true love:
“If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on.”
On making simple things:
“That’s been one of my mantras — focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex. You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.”
On doing what you love:
“You’ve got to find what you love (…) Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.
Steve Jobs inspired millions with his quotes and passion for his work and his legacy lives on every time you open a Mac, listen to music on your iPod, or send a text on your iPhone. Are you inspired yet?