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Steve Jobs - Photo from the front page of Apple website

I remember the ad that aired during the Super Bowl in the year 1984. That was my senior year in high school. All seniors in Oregon were reading the George Orwell novel, 1984, and so the Apple commercial totally resonated with me. But it wasn’t just the Orwellian nature of the commercial–it was the first time technology caught my eye.

Then I went to college where there was really only a handful of Macintosh computers on campus and I made sure I knew what computer labs had them. I always used a Mac, even if it meant standing in a queue for it. I thought people were insane to use computers that had DOS because I had no patience for DOS. I loved fonts and Apple had them.

I told a friend one time in the late 80’s that if I were reincarnated as a font I would be the font, Avant Garde. Apple had that font on its computers.

After college I went to work in Silicon Valley for a (wait for it…) Macintosh software reseller called Computerware. I loved working in Palo Alto and getting the skinny on all things Apple Computer. On my desk was a Macintosh II. And then I advanced to a Macintosh SE30. Several years later I bought a Mac SE from a friend and then when I had enough money saved I bought my first brand-spankin’ new shiney Macintosh–the Cube. Oh, how I loved that computer!

I remember when Apple stock was selling around $10 a share I wished I had enough money to buy shares. Looking back, I should have taken out a loan to do that. I had faith in the company and once Jobs came back to the company I knew it would take off. I bought one of the first iPods, and then the one in color (still have it!) and got the iPhone. Two laptops later, plus the conversion of two family members, I have Apple in my DNA. In fact, a lot of my wedding was the result of Apple. (Customized thank-you cards using iPhoto cards, our wedding website using iWeb, our music using iTunes, and iDisk, which enabled me to manage all the wedding plans from what would later be known as the Cloud. I also made a beautiful Apple photo book with iPhoto using my photographer’s digital photos.)

I’m a proud Mobile Me user, iPad owner and plan to buy Apple TV for Christmas.

I know this all sounds so materialistic, but what I’m trying to say that I’ve completely loved being part of the ride of innovation sparked by Steve Jobs. The message in that first Apple commercial in 1984 was what resonated with me–the idea that the stodgy way of doing things doesn’t have to be. The tools we use can definitely impact how we think and how we act. It opens up so many possibilities. That’s what I have loved about Apple and what I’ve loved about Steve Jobs.

He has shaped who I am and how I look at things: Simply, thoughtfully and creatively.

Thank you Steve Jobs.