You have to think differently
I’ve been a fan of Steve Jobs as a person since I was a teenager. It was the products out of Steve Jobs creative vision that helped me make it through High School and College. School was a struggle, but when I got my first Mac (Mac Plus) in 1986, my world changed (as do most people when they get a Mac). Steve Jobs in 1997 gave a speech from his heart, that spewed from his passion, and in this speech he understood that you have to think differently to get the job done in the coming age (the soon to be 21st Century). With the advent of 21st century learning skills we begin to see what it is that he spoke about in 1997. You see Mr. Jobs has always understand the concepts of 21st century learning skills. They are Creativity, Collaboration, and Organization. Before the rest of the world was even thinking about Y2K (when all computers but Mac’s were going to crash), Mr. Jobs had developed a vision of think differently. His vision created a device that was creative, brought people together like none other (collaborative), and was the master of organization. This was the Macintosh Computer and the Mac OS.
Our task today (this era) is to continue to THINK DIFFERENTLY. To have an idea, to flush the idea out, and to see it flourish. Thinking differently in Instructional Technology or Educational Technology is not about having the newest idea, the next “100 coolest websites”, or the first to point to an app, that’s been done, and there are a plethora of “those sites” out there. In today’s social media saturated world you can find them if you know where to look. The challenge is, and always has been, to “think differently.” That is, the actual application of those tools.
When you begin to think differently you are going to rub some people wrong, you are going to rub others ‘raw,’ but if you have the right spirit, the right attitude, think differently doesn’t have to be a hurtful thing. In fact to think differently needs to be a HEARTfelt thing. In the video above Steve Jobs speaks from his heart, he always has (on video). He is a master communicator. He is trying to change the world the only way he knows how, by sharing his vision. You can either get on board and accept it or not. Either way, it doesn’t change for Steve Jobs. I’ve got a vision of educating the district I work with about the many opportunities that Instructional Technology can bring. And there are many opportunities. I get the joy on a weekly basis to get to share my vision and passion with many teachers.
I listen to various Steve Jobs videos monthly to remind me of my personal vision for Instructional Technology. I need my motivational talks too, and Steve Job’s motivates me to think differently. To not take the easy way out, but to think deeply, to challenge the status quo (not just for the sake of challenging but find the best possible solution to a problem). I rarely look at something (even something I helped create) and think “yes that’s the ticket.” It might be part of the solution, but thinking differently means the easiest route or the first solution is not always the best.
In Instructional Technology we need those who think differently, who have original thoughts, who look at an idea, challenge it, and then make it better. In Instructional Technology we need passionate people who care about what they are doing and want to learn more. Steve Jobs embodies these ideas and they are ideals I strive to incorporate into my life, my teaching, my learning. As I “think differently” (challenge the system of current thought) in my department I remind myself of what Steve Jobs says, “A lot times people think you are crazy, but in that crazy we see genius.” Thank you Steve Jobs, Jake Standish, and Jamie Smith for the encouragement you give on a daily basis!