June 12, 2013
Netbooks were the Red Wedding
Pretty much all stories are about the human condition; they explore the decisions people make, the forces and ideas which drive them, and the impact of those actions on those who follow and fall before them. Epic stories tend towards epic settings, which is why Game of Thrones is set in a quasi-mediaeval land of knights and horses and archers and castles.
Fast-forward 1500 years, and the equivalent setting for future dramatists will be the corporate battlegrounds of the early digital age. There’s no doubt that the story of Apple, for example, is epic in structure: the rise, fall and rise again (following the return of the founding King) is straight out of the Greek playbook.
Not that I expect the stories to be as simplistic and literal as ‘Jobs vs. Gates’. I merely note that we live in epic times.
We saw the hand of destiny, the reassertion of martial and political primacy, in Apple’s newfound confidence at WWDC this week. Pressured by the traditional ruler to the North, harried by the reivers of Wall Street, the supposedly-cowed company growled and bayed its defiance.
Can’t innovate any more, my ass.
— Phil Schiller
The sabre-rattling and troop-rousing was framed, however, within bookends of statements of pious faith, a re-expression and return to the qualities enshrined in the Kingdom’s founding:
Designed by Apple in California
We live in epic times.