Take a walk.

I found one thing he constantly did with everyone he was close to in life

Earlier today I finished reading Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson, the stand alone biography about the man who made Apple Computers. Yes the tale was riveting, it sends an enlightening power through your soul whenever you turn the page and find the next chapter in Steve’s life is just a good as the last. The tale follows a man starting from the time he’s barely twenty years old, smelly, with an untrimmed beard, no shoes, fiery temper, and lofty expectations for this idea that everyone can have a personal computer. He transitions into a humbled father, of both children and some of the most innovative products in the world, wearing an iconic black turtle neck, classic New Balance kicks, still with a fiery temper, and lofty expectations for the future of personal computing.

Throughout the entire book though, there is one theme of Steve’s that I wish to mimic. Everyone who is a friend of mine knows Steve Jobs has been an idol of mine since very early on, and I’d actually say this book brought him down to the real world for me (yes everyone, I understand now that he wasn’t ungodly perfect). However, I found one thing he constantly did with everyone he was close to in life that I would like to start doing myself – taking a walk.

Whenever there was a discussion about something bigger than everyone in the room, Steve would take someone for a walk. Some of the greatest decisions in the history of Apple and Pixar (did you know Steve Jobs made Pixar into what it is today?) Things like Toy Story, the iPod, and Steve returning to the helm of Apple all were finalized on a walk with Steve. He would take anyone who needed a clear mind for a walk and it seemed almost every time Walter Isaacson interviewed him, they went for a walk. In the computer industry is hard to think about going outside, sometimes we can be locked behind our screens for days at a time with our only fresh air being the walk between the office and the car.

We forget that the reason we are even making technology

That breath of fresh air is somewhat euphoric to think about in a world consumed with bits, wires, and electricity. We aim to make things as compact and tight as possible in our industry, smaller phones, smaller watches, smaller everything. Smaller, smaller, smaller. Thinner, thinner, thinner. We forget how big this world really is, how lucky we are all to be in it, and honestly we forget that the reason we are even making technology in the first place is suppose to be to make the world around us a better place. Today I went for a walk, I thought about my life, my plans, my business, my family, my girlfriend, my friends, and I came back feeling better than ever with a new attitude and a jump start to my day.

I recommend you try taking a walk. No matter what time of the day it is, if you’re stuck or feel a lack of motivation you should take a walk. Even if you don’t – go take a walk. Is it silent? Take a walk. The world is never silent, I learned today that crickets do actually chirp, and I even saw one on the ground and just stopped to listen. It’s a beautiful thing, the world made by time. I feel especially for those of us who work behind computers and build virtual worlds all day we forget to take a lesson from the natural technology around us. Look at the clouds, breath the air, meet a squirrel and think to ourselves:

How can I help make the world a better place for him?

Next time you’re behind those keys, think about the fresh air, think about the world, think about Mr. Squirrel.

brandon jp scott

My name is Brandon, and I like to make things. I'm a Full Stack Software Engineer and Linux Security Engineer from Ann Arbor, Michigan. I started programming when some childhood friends and I decided to make a private Ragnarok Online server and host it in my parents basement. I got designated "code guy", fell in love, and never looked back. I started teaching myself as much as I could, and started my first online entity, a non-profit, with a high school classmate. Eventually I took this love to the University of Michigan where I studied Computer Science Engineering and Entrepreneurship. During my time there I was lucky enough to work for two iconic tech companies, Automattic and Google. Currently, I am the Technology Director of Argo Labs, an Ann Arbor based digital engineering, design, videography, and content marketing company aiming to build a more unique web that I cofounded in July 2015.

1 comment

Hava Levitt-Phillips
Hava Levitt-Phillips - June 29, 2016 Reply

Oh, Brandon, there is so much good in here! I continue to be so delighted by your choice to #Blog100Days ?

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