Apple is like Australia.

On our flight back from Australia, fiddling with her PowerBook laptop, my wife said to me out of the blue: “Apple (computers, iPod, IPhone, etc.) is like Australia!”

Now here was a comparison I had not heard before. She explained it this way, when ever I want to do something no my computer I think where would it be if I had designed this PowerBook computer and there it is, easy. When ever I want to do something in Australia, I go and talk to people and there you go no problem done. She then carried on and said, “you try doing that in Europe or the US – everybody is stressed, miserable and our political correctness is slowly driving me up the wall.”

And indeed a few weeks ago I read in “The Age” – a daily paper in Australia – that in Europe and the US about 70% of people had a negative outlook for the future, about 20% a positive outlook and the rest didn’t have an outlook.

In Australia, these figures are reversed, over 70% of people have a positive outlook and it shows in everyday life, the whole society is more friendly and less stressed – why is that? I wonder if Australians are really aware of this fundamental difference? Here people are still interested in improving things and have this “go and get ’em” mentality, while I fear we in the US/Europe often only care about making money fast, we are often not interested in building long lasting value, but have this “quarterly” outlook in life. This kind of behavior my yet come to haunt us, as it has a profound social impact.

As far as Apple products are concerned this is a pretty big endorsement too. It translates – for me anyway – into, “I have less stress in using this computer, in comparison to all others.” Why would that be so? I believe it to be the outlook of people like Steve Jobs, who clearly does not think about himself first, but his company and he is not motivated by making more money, but by moving things forward.

To bring this down to a simple denominator – I guess you could conclude, that chasing the money makes us stressful and ill, chasing a vision is fun and therapeutic.

So I guess, she is right: Apple is like Australia. — ST.

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