The Me Generation is dead. The iGeneration rules.
Jobs and the products he masterminded at Apple (AAPL) created a world in which a generation of young people has grown up knowing that the i's have it. iPods. iTunes. iPhones. iPads. Anyone born since the mid-1990s has lived a life influenced from the beginning by Jobs in ways subtle and not.
For as long as the iGeneration can remember, an infinite series of mobile devices has emanated from 1 Infinite Loop, providing kids with the tools to connect and collaborate with one another while expressing themselves to the world -- a feat that can be awkward and difficult for any adolescent to pull off.
"You know how they say, 'Oh, the kids are the future,' " Iberys Iglesias, 16, asks? "He's given us things to better our future."
Iglesias, a junior at Cupertino's Homestead High School, which happens to be Jobs' alma mater, says the Apple co-founder has given her generation the tools to "go more full out."
It's not often that an iconic force comes along and changes everything for an entire generation. The Beatles, for Jobs and his boomer cohort. And now Jobs, for
It makes sense that teens would embrace Jobs and the products he helped produce. Jobs was a lot of things. But he was not a phony. Kids embrace genuineness. They can smell a pretender a mile away.
They also gravitate to those who understand that things don't have to be done the way they've always been done; that in fact the only way to move forward is to ignore the confines of conformity.
Of course, the connection starts with the products, which are undeniably cool in the eyes of a set for which cool really matters. Many in the iGeneration started school about the time computer labs were being outfitted with the fruity-colored iMacs that Jobs introduced after his 1996 return to Apple. Next came an iPod or an iPhone for a birthday present or graduation gift. And then came iTunes and the era of listening to whatever music you wanted to, whenever you wanted to.