3rd-Party Family

Yesterday, as the news of Steve Jobs’ death began to break, my RSS feeds and Twitter stream grew full with links to stories, photos, and videos.

All these Steve Jobs articles, stories, photos, and tributes which are surfacing right now are not in the slightest way redundant. I am reading and enjoying so many of them. They are our way of saying thank you to Steve Jobs. We, the Mac nerds, are thankful for the careers and hobbies he gave us.

It’s amazing to me how so many in this community — the indie devs, designers, writers, et al. — have a story about our first Mac or about a nervous encounter we had with Steve Jobs. We love what we do, we’re proud to use Apple products, and we’re thankful for the careers and hobbies that we have been able to build up thanks to Steve’s Apple.

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This past June I went to WWDC for the first time. I didn’t attend the conference, I simply went to San Francisco to meet all the other Mac nerds who would be there. And while there, I was blown away by this universal understanding of we’re all family.

I met developers such as Marco Arment, Brent Simmons, Craig Hockenberry, and Daniel Jalkut. Former Apple employees like Matt Drance, and current ones like Scott Simpson. CEOs like AJ, David Barnard, and Cabel Sasser. Designers such as Chris Clark, Neven Mrgan, and Tim Van Damme. Consultants like Michael Lopp and Ken Yarmosh. And writers like John Gruber, Rene Ritchie, and Jim Dalrymple.

Such a colorful array of the 3rd-party Apple family; so many Mac nerds. So many pals.

There is one Mac nerd I did not get to meet or even see. And that was Steve Jobs. Without a conference badge my only hope to get in for the WWDC Keynote was with a press pass. Alas, all the emails I sent to Apple PR went unanswered. And so, with an americano and borrowed wi-fi, I watched Steve’s final keynote from a coffee shop in Roseville.

During the next few days, as I walked the streets of downtown San Francisco, everyone I met — from designers, to developers, CEOs, marketers, writers, and other nerds — was pleased to meet me, and I them. Everyone was kind and friendly. It didn’t matter that I had no conference badge, and that I had flown to San Francisco on my own dime simply to hang out with a bunch of other Mac nerds and not attend any of the WWDC sessions. I was there to meet some my peers, my pals, and there was respect in that.

You and I are on the same team. We all are. We may link to the same articles, review the same products, develop apps for the same market, and design with the same intense perfectionism, but we are a community. Let’s continue to fight for each other, encourage each other, and work together to make amazing things.

We are the 3rd-party family of Apple nerds. Let’s make a dent.

3rd-Party Family