Where Will We Go From Here?

Cross-posted from McKinney & Associate’s ‘Comm in the Storm’ blog, where I write about Diversity issues every Thursday.

As the global technology community collectively mourns the loss of one of its greatest visionaries, Steve Jobs, many are already wondering what lies ahead for his brainchild company and mobile technology in general.

There’s no denying the impact and reach of Jobs’ innovation and drive. From the Apple fans who own every iProduct out there, to those still trying to figure out how to download an ap, it’s safe to say that his role in the modern mobile technology era has effectively changed society as we knew it.

So now what? Sad as it may be to say goodbye, Jobs himself was aware of the opportunity that comes from death:

“Death is very likely the single best invention of life. It’s life change agent.” (2005 Stanford Commencement Speech)

Instead of focusing on what is lost, now more than ever may be the time to look at opportunities for improvement. Where Jobs reinvented and perfected the notion of product designed to fit function, maybe it’s time to think about designing our products’ functions to fit our lives.

Even as the skyrocketing use of mobile technology spans cultural and racial divides, there remain gaps in how different social groups interact with it. While African Americans and Latinos “are more likely than the general population to access the Web by cellular phones…Researchers have noticed signs of segregation online that perpetuate divisions in the physical world. And blacks and Latinos may be using their increased Web access more for entertainment than empowerment.”

So the question remains: where will we go from here? Jobs may have left some big shoes to step into, but he also achieved major headway toward tremendous opportunities begging to be fulfilled.

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