Thanks Steve Jobs…For Everything, and For Everything We Haven’t Seen Yet

As I was on a phone call yesterday I noticed the news of Steve Job’s resignation from Apple pop up on Facebook. My immediate reaction was that it was some hoax and that it would eventually be debunked.

The entire world now knows that Steve Jobs has indeed resigned as CEO from Apple and has moved to the Chairman of the Board position. Tim Cook who was an incredible COO and was acting CEO during Steve’s various medical leaves is now the new CEO.

Of course everyone and their uncle are chiming in on what this means for Apple, and wondering how Tim Cook will perform. I could spin all my ideas out there but in the end my belief comes down to a few simple words. IT WILL ALL BE FINE.

Walt Mossberg made the one point in this video on the Wall St. Journal’s site that everyone seems to passing over…STEVE JOBS ISN’T DEAD. So it’s not like Steve won’t be contributing his ideas and thoughts to Apple’s future.

While he’s still with us (THANKFULLY!) I still want to take a moment to take Steve Jobs for everything he’s done at Apple in his role as CEO.

For me Steve Jobs…
1. Gave me a reason to give the MAC a shot and move from being a PC to a MAC GUY. I’m such a MAC guy I say with all honesty…”You can have my MacBook back when you pry it from my cold, dead,lifeless hands”.

2. Came up with two of the most incredible ways to listen to music and movies, saving me from carrying binders of CDs and/or DVDs as well as be more productive.

3. Gave me my own little piece of real life Star Trek tech.4. Created a marketplace that opened a whole new economy, a new obsession for and in a way a new role for me at REBS.

5. Taught me how to give better presentations

Finally and most importantly…

Steve Jobs gave me a reason to get excited again about technology on a daily basis.

So thanks Steve for everything you’ve done and for everything you’ve done that we haven’t gotten to see yet.

I pray that you’ll continue to be with us for some time and that by stepping down as CEO you’ll be able to get healthier, spend more time with your family and be able to continue to be the incredible influence that you’ve been thus far. Here’s to many more years of Steve Jobs magic!

Journey To ILM

My first memory of Star Wars was going with my Dad to see the original during it’s initial release. Just me, my Dad and a movie he had heard would be pretty good. Little did the both of us know how good it would be.

It seems like it was just yesterday that I saw Darth Vader for the first time as he entered the Tantive IV and his ominous breathing filled the movie theater. As a 5 year old, his presence was overwhelming and a tad on the scary side.

Flash forward many, many, many years later and Star Wars has become a huge part of my life. From seeing the films more times than I can count, to plunking down gobs of cash for collectibles, to the subtle and not so subtle inferences I make to Star Wars in my teaching sessions. Let’s not forget about the vanity license plate that took 40 minutes to nail down with a helpful AAA customer service person – 4VRJEDI.

To say that I was dying to go to Lucasfilm & ILM was an understatement. Not just because of all of the Star Wars work they did and continue to do, but all the incredible effects they’ve done on movies that shaped my childhood and continue to entertain me to this day. They’re the ones who broke the ground on special effects and made it possible for worlds to be created that may have never been created with traditional models. For me, these talented people are like what Babe Ruth is to baseball fans, or Magic Johnson is to basketball fans.

I had hoped one day I would run into someone who actually could get me in, or would know someone that could and in turn help fulfill a childhood dream of mine. Earlier this year after a presentation to a group of agents & brokers, that’s exactly what happened.

Now the day has come, and I am going to journey to the city by the bay. I’ll finally get to see the incredible facility that is Lucasfilm and ILM.

I’ll be traveling lightly, taking only my iPhone and the following

My iPad, Canon PowerShot SD790, Verizon MiFi card and an iPad camera connection kit.

Of course I’m taking along their appropriate charging devices as well, but my backpack will still be pretty light. The lightest I’ve traveled in some time.

You may ask, Chris why are you taking a Verizon MiFi card? You have the iPad 3G.
Simple, the MiFi is cheaper and allows me to use it with all my tech gear. I got the 3G as a back-up in case I can’t get a MiFi signal, or if the MiFi runs out of power and I can’t charge it.

Hopefully all of gear will allow me to journal this entire trip, let you get a taste for what it’s like for a geek’s dream to get fulfilled, and find out how the iPad performs on the go.

So all that being said…

Chewie, fire up the power converters, it’s light-speed to the Presidio!

Happy New Year!!!

So I hoped to do some blog posting over my holiday vacation but I actually managed to stay off a computer the majority of my time off, and spent time with family and friends. I especially got to spend some great quality time with my son Josh.

We hung out, we did shopping, we played video games and even made cookies for Santa. I’m bragging here, but I gotta say I’ve got a great kid. Smart, friendly, loving, caring, fun and just all around awesome.

While Christmas is my all time favorite holiday, I do love starting a new year. It’s a time to look back at where you’ve been and a time to get excited about and plan ahead for the future.

For me 2008 was a year that I faced a lot of challenges.
Emotionally, Physically, Professionally, I dealt with them all.

In the end I was able to come out on the other side and say “I did it!”. Of course I did it with a great deal of help from God, family, friends, co-workers and all those in between who either brightened my day with a smile, or gave me the positive feedback or push I needed to press on.

In thinking about everything in 2008 the following from “Grey’s Anatomy” really hit home for me.

We enter the world alone and we leave it alone and everything that happens in between we owe it to ourselves to find a little company.

We need help.

We need support.

Otherwise we’re in it by ourselves.

Strangers.

Cut off from each other, and we forget…

Just how connected we all are

So instead,

WE CHOOSE LOVE

WE CHOOSE LIFE

And for a moment…

We feel just a little bit less alone.

I of course choose love, and I choose life. I am so blessed to be surrounded by so many people that make my life anything but lonely.

So now it’s time to look forward to a brand new year. A new year that’s filled with promise & hope.
To help kick off this new year I thought I’d share this great video filled with inspirational speeches from various movies.

May it inspire you, like it inspires me, and may your 2009 be a great one!

The Passing Of A Legend – Stan Winston

On Sunday, June 15th 2008 Hollywood and the world at large lost a legend.

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Academy Award winning visual effects artist and master Stan Winston passed away after a seven-year battle with myeloma.

Many are not familiar with who Stan Winston is, but everyone in this world has at some time seen his work.

Stan was responsible for bringing the intimidating robots from the “Terminator” movies to life.

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Stan created the fearsome Predator who stalked Governator Arnold Schwarzenegger in the jungle.
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Stan gave us a reason to scream in space with the sinister Aliens who did battle with Sigourney Weaver.
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Stan introduced us to the unique person that was Edward Scissorhands.
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Perhaps the most well known was the life he breathed into creatures of “Jurassic Park” making every little boy”s fantasy come true. Living dinosaurs.
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I was fortunate to be able to meet Stan Winston a couple of times.

The first was at a press junket for ?Jurassic Park 3?. After a brief tour of one of the jungle sets we were taken back to a non-descript office where we got to sit and ask Stan questions. He came into and lit up the room. His personality just spilled over and made a potentially boring roundtable interview fun and interesting. After our little roundtable he took us to the Universal Studios 747 stage where two of his biggest creations were hanging out.

We walked into the 747 stage and he first revealed his latest creation – the Spinosaur. Right across from the Spinosaur was the legendary T-Rex.

Stan was a like a proud papa the whole time, you could tell he was proud of his work and the work of his team. He truly loved what he was doing and considered himself very lucky.

The second time I met him was after a screening of “Jurassic Park” at Arclight Cinemas. The same cheerful attitude and appreciation for his fans, the whole time. I was even lucky enough to get him to sign my “Jurassic Park”, “Lost World”, “Jurassic Park 3” and “Terminator 2” DVD covers. A few months later James Cameron signed my “Terminator 2” cover and when he noticed Stan’s signature said “I share great company on this”.

Stan Winston was an incredible man who brought the imaginations of many filmmakers and moviegoers to life. The world will never be the same without him.