Related link: http://www.time.com/time/2003/inventions/invmusic.html
I’d probably consider iTunes an invention of a business model than anything else, but I gues that counts. I think its success demonstrates that Jobs’s great gift is not so much inventive genius, but just the doggedness to pursue arbitrage where other business people are bewilderingly blinkered. The Mac was addressed the need for a computer with even a pretense of design values, as opposed to cattle-car PCs. iTunes represents a determinaton to make money off people’s yearning for digital media options designed with even a pretense of respect for consumers. See the article for details on how Jobs realy looks to make money through iTunes. It’s amazing that Apple’s competitiors couldn’t figure out a business model along these lines.
I just said “…Jobs’s great gift is not so much inventive genius…” Perhaps the greatest inventive genius after all is that which makes you wonder in retrospect whether everyone else in the field was sleepwalking when the invention was taking place.
Will we be comparing Jobs/iTunes to Edison/phonograph a century from now?