Yesterday's news of Steve Jobs' resignation was a blow to Mac fanboys and design lovers alike, and one that came mere days after Apple briefly became the world's most valuable company. The thought that the man behind so many products that I love and use would no longer be at his post was distressing.
It's important to realize, however, that Jobs is a forward-thinker. It's not as if he envisioned the iPod/iPhone/iPad one May and the product came out in June. These things were years in the making, and Jobs' tendency to look towards the future means he surely anticipated his own resignation and how the company could move forward after he stepped down. It seems almost obvious that the man would have not only endeavored to establish talented employees in key positions, but sketched out some sort of future product design roadmap as well. I wouldn't be surprised to find this roadmap stretches ten or twenty years into the future, outlining ideas for products that are still waiting for technology to catch up to his vision. There are surely things currently in Apple's product pipeline that will be released when his resignation date is long in the rearview mirror.
Apple will continue to be helmed by the capable Tim Cook and they still have one of the world's most talented designers in Jonathan Ive, not to mention an army of vetted employees all used to doing things the Jobs way. So I'm hopeful that Apple will continue to wow us with some of the best combinations of design, technology, and that Jobsian X-Factor that provides rich and compelling user experiences.