When Apple ran its now famous Super-Bowl ad for the MacIntosh in 1984, I didn't know what to think. I had spent the previous two years building my business with my nose down writing mainframe assembler code for a French airline cooperative (SITA). I had no use for the PC revolution which I saw as immature and unworthy of business applications.

Others saw it differently. The day after the commercial ran my client, Claude Avignon, declared that in 12 months the Mac was going to put me out of business. Claude scared me enough that I went out and bought one of the first Macs.

The Mac made it very simple to manipulate graphics, and despite flunking art class in high school I still managed to create an ad for my software package that eventually helped win business from several airlines around the world. I've admired Steven Jobs ever since and spent a lot of time with his NeXT operating system which I understand became the underpinning of the newer Mac OSs including the recent Tiger operating system .

Lessons learned:
1. Watch Super-Bowl commercials.
2. Consider it a favor when someone tells you your business is threatened.
3. Try doing stuff you're not good at. It keeps your mind active and may open up opportunities you never considered.

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