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Posts tagged ‘creativity’

Why Steve Jobs mattered

Like so many 30-somethings i grew up in an era where personal computing was just getting its feet wet. An era wherein the possibilities for what we could do—for the first time—became truly endless; where following the typical career path wasn’t a mandate my generation felt tied to; and where following your heart and doing what you love actually could pay off.

When i saw the news of the untimely death of Steve Jobs flood my twitter feed late Wed, i fought my inner cynic trying to figure out why this should even affect me—i was feeling all choked up and not sure why. He made things, i bought things, no big deal right?

BIG deal.

My life as i know it today could not exist without the innovations of this man. Everything i do, everything i touch and care about every day has his unrelenting vision to thank for making it possible. He put beautiful, well-designed, humanized computers that just WORK into all of our hands, allowing us to control, to obsess, leave no stone unturned, no detail too small—just like the breathing of a macbook sleep light.

I work in an institution dedicated to the expression of art mashed up with technology—a giant monument to this man’s influence in the arts, a primordial art/tech soup, and oh how much we all owe him an inexpressible debt of gratitude. So thank you Steve, thank you for allowing so many of us to explore new creative ideas and avenues in totally novel ways, thank you for following your instincts at whatever cost, and thank you for enabling me to go to work everyday feeling peace in my heart and psyched to solve another problem.

Tear up the Bardo!

“In most people’s vocabularies, design means veneer. It’s interior decorating. It’s the fabric of the curtains of the sofa. But to me, nothing could be further from the meaning of design. Design is the fundamental soul of a human-made creation that ends up expressing itself in successive outer layers of the product or service.” — Steve Jobs

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Rowling on Failure and the benefits of imagination

I’ve been to many talks, conference sessions, and read many articles about failure especially related to innovation and the creative process – that you must first fail to realize really revolutionary ideas, to spur real creativity. It extends to iteration in the web world, but that’s completely trivializing the core of what Rowling is getting at.

Simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me. Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one arena I believed I truly belonged. I was set free, because my greatest fear had been realised, and I was still alive, and I still had a daughter whom I adored, and I had an old typewriter and a big idea. And so rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life.

What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality…That is an astonishing statement and yet proven a thousand times every day of our lives. It expresses, in part, our inescapable connection with the outside world, the fact that we touch other people’s lives simply by existing.

and, for the record, i’d love to be a gay wizard.

http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=1711302&server=vimeo.com&show_title=1&show_byline=1&show_portrait=0&color=&fullscreen=1

J.K. Rowling Speaks at Harvard Commencement from Harvard Magazine on Vimeo.