It’s been weeks after Steve Jobs & Dennis Ritchie’s death but there are still a lot of people comparing their contribution to mankind. Most people are taking up sides and things start to resemble the infamous Twilight debate of Team Edward vs. Team Jacob (yup, it is as cheesy as it sounds). Sometimes I think that when they say “RIP” for ones death while keep using the deceased name to bash the other dead person is never meant to provide any condolences, unless they were meant to say “rip” in CAPSLOCK.
When Team Jobs vs. Team Ritchie Stooped too Low.
Team Steve vs. Team Ritchie
Since most people are sharing and comparing Jobs and Ritchie without solid knowledge of history and each of their contribution, let’s face it: the crowd are dividing themselves into teams just like how yeast splits. Team Jobs mourns about his death while team Ritchie rants about Ritchie deserves more recognition.
Typical rant as heard from Team Jobs:
“Uhuhuhu, no Steve no future booohoooo!”
“Steve died! I always love Steve! He’s a saint he’s in iCloud’s Pearly Gates introducing iPad to St. Peter!” (Do you know that he’s a buddhist?) “Huh?”
*Mourn-for-Steve marathon on every social networking side everytime seeing a new tribute-to-Steve for share, while doesn’t really mean it.*
(Team Jobs does not bash Dennis Ritchie because they don’t know who the heck is Dennis Ritchie.)
As heard from Team Ritchie:
“Steve Jobs doesn’t deserve the recognition over Dennis Ritchie! Everyone should mourn for Ritchie’s death!”
“Because I don’t like Steve Jobs.” (why?) “I… I don’t have a solid reason and I don’t care about what he did.”
“Oh, Steve. He’s too popular and I will not use Apple products ever again.” (But you watched a lot of Pixar movies, no?) “Fuck off, you don’t understand!”
“Oh, Dennis Ritchie died (Who’s that? Let me wiki it up and then I’ll say that I knew him for years). *sob*”
But is this a good argument?
Arguing about which one of them is the best or “FIRST!” will not bring them back. Both brought changes to us and they had executed their dreams while getting the attention that they sought for: Jobs owns a multibillion company that recognizes opportunities for the mass, and Ritchie lived as a humble engineer and modest man with strong work ethic. In order words, they had lived their lives and gave us what both technology literates and illiterates have always wanted.
Steve Jobs did not steal ideas, he is just a business celebrity that recognizes engineers’ capabilities and push good technology products to the public while never being an engineer himself. He became a household name. Ritchie is an engineer who knows what he can do for the engineers and developers and then execute it. Ritchie is decades before Jobs. Undeniably, without Ritchie, there may not be huge tech corp like Apple, and without Apple, personal computers will not be as advanced and cheap as now (take it from Lisa, babe!), the music scene may continue to plunge due to piracy and no label as backup, the importance of UI/UX will not be appreciated as it is now, your tech illiterate friends may be tangled up by cables and cords, computer illiterate grandma will never be able to stay connected through iPad. Even cats play iPad.
Rant and compare with all your might, it will not make the world any better. We, the engineers, programmers and UI/UX designers, who have utilizes the good opportunities they help in create, to reach out to those who are unfamiliar with engineering and technologies, but owning solid hardwares simple enough to use, regardless if it is an Apple, Android phones or Windows Phone 7, which had risen upon recent advantageous competition.
Don’t compare the dead, show some respect
Seriously, Jobs and Ritchie are not even close on the scale for comparison (just compare their hair count in their beard). I don’t think we have much to compare if we judge it fairly with logic. I believe that Ritchie left with the way he wanted. He was not ignored by those important to him, his colleagues and real friends. Humble developers would not want to be remembered by people who had no real understanding of what he did with his passion. Same goes to Jobs, he never choose to die under media attention. Eventually, they may be the same, because they were mere mortals. Give them a break.
Haters are still gonna hate, but it is not right to take side on any brand or blindly worship any tech cult, especially after ones death. Sadly, there are a numbers of the opportunist tech geeks who were / are too blinded by fanaticism due to hypocrisy. Let’s face it, developers who opened to available resources regardless of the brands tend to achieve better. I may be bashed or banned because I’m pointing out what really happened now. However, the mentality of self-claiming as developers with biased attitude have swayed way off from who we were taught to be:
a goddamn batman an ethical developer.