Last night I heard the news that Steve Jobs, the co-founder and former CEO of Apple, had passed away after finally succumbing to his long battle with cancer. The news was a shock and very sad, though I didn't fear for Apple. Having met many people at the Cupertino based hardware and software company, I'm firmly convinced that the company is in very good hands and will continue to innovate for years to come. But the passing of Steve Jobs is a sad milestone.
Steve and company developed some of the most innovative technology advancements that have changed the way those on the Autism Spectrum learn. With the introduction of the iPhone, iPod Touch, and finally the iPad, many parents have had affordable tools with which their children can communicate. Their dedication to those with disabilities has made devices that are accessible to the blind, deaf, and those with mental conditions that make communication difficult. And for that, Mr. Jobs, I salute you.
While he was known to be very opinionated, brisk, and abrasive at times, I have always found that the culture he fostered to be very open to all with ability. The campus was always busy with those who sought to improve the experience at every level for the user, and with their broad proliferation within the consumer market, they have succeeded. I had never met the man personally, though I had seen him once before the launch of the iPhone with the men who brought us that very unique and game-changing device. He was focused, determined, and seemed in a hurry. From all accounts of those closest to him this first impression I had of him was a very telling one, and very true to his nature and his drive.
My heart goes out to the family of Steve Jobs, as they mourn his passing. Know that we mourn with you.
Thank you again Steve, for all that you have done for a growing, often confused Autism community. You will be greatly missed, and remembered as one who, whether intentionally or not, enabled so many of us to help our children.