Freshly Squeezed OpEd: Chicken Little and Scott Forstall

Nov 9, 2012 | OpEd | 2 comments

“The sky is falling! The sky is falling!”, said Chicken Little.
Once she told Henny Penny, Ducky Lucky, Goosey Loosey, and Turkey Lurkey, they were all in a tizzy!
“Scott Forstall is fired! Scot Forstall is fired!,” said the blogs.
Once they told the analysts and fanboys, they were all in a tizzy! “Look, the stock is falling! The stock is falling!,” they all cried.
The recent ‘promotion,’ leading to the eminent dismissal, of Messr. Forstall has produced an incredible cacophony of cow patties.
All this noise is being raised by the same people who didn’t like his work at all. They couldn’t raise their voices high enough to complain! Remember the OS X Calendar app, with its torn page and leather binding? Or how about the icon for ‘Find A Friend”?
Embossed leather with stitching. The green ‘pool table’ felt background of Game Center. The fabric background of Notifications.

And no list would be complete without Maps. Messr. Forstall couldn’t be vilified enough for that, surely!
But now that his ticket has been punched for the shoe leather express, analysts and fanboys alike can’t cry enough that we are meddling with the second coming of Steve Jobs.
The stocks are tanking as we replay the familiar refrain – ‘Would Steve Jobs do this?’ It’s like watching sharks battle over a bucket of chum. No pundit can resist pronouncing the end of Apple’s domination! Even Ballmer is proclaiming that because Steve is gone, that Windows will now rise from the ashes like the phoenix! The Forstall firing is proof that Apple’s management is imploding, according to his thought.
And to compound the insanity, people are upset that Sir Jonathan is now in charge of Human Interface. Granted, software and hardware do require different skill sets. But at the root of both, in the Apple domain, one constant remains; simplicity.
Sir Jonathan spent years working side-by-side with Jobs creating masterpieces, making great strides in hardware design. Can we say the same of Forstall’s efforts? Not really. Instead, he chose to make things look more like an environment that wouldn’t threaten your grandmother. And that was fine to teach people how to not be afraid of a computer.
But now it’s time to take off the training wheels.
Now, open the door and look out across the street. Android and Windows. Particularly Windows. They’re making attempts at moving the Human Interface forward. Granted, not successfully so far, but they’re attempting some interesting things. Where’s Apple?
Cook made a go of getting all the leaders to play together nicely, but t was not to be. So, some people would have to go for the greater good. Forstall drew one of the short straws.
And don’t cry for Scott. Financially, he’s set for life. And he’ll land on his creative feet. I read one blog that had an interesting idea, too. If Ballmer had an ion of business acumen, he would step aside and make Forstall the CEO of Microsoft.
No matter how you feel about the dismissals, Apple will continue to innovate. Even without Scott Forstall. Will Sir Jonathan possess the key? Time will tell.
I am confident of is that Tim Cook knows who can best handle the business end of things and who can innovate.
And that’s all that matters.
©2012 Frank Petrie /


  1. emilie123

    This is a really great article. I will be sharing it along. 🙂

    • ympnow

      Thanks very much. Appreciate the kind words.


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