Monday, January 28, 2008

They call it RDF, I call it brainwashing

I’m OK now, but on January 15h, I got caught up in "Steve Jobs Reality-Distortion Field."

That was the day that Jobs spoke at the Macworld Expo, announcing a new lightweight notebook machine, along with a movie rental service and some updates to the iPhone and iPod touch.

Well-known among Apple watchers, the phrase “reality-distortion field” was first uttered 26 years ago, according to Andy Hertzfield. On, he credits Bud Tribble, Hertzfield's manager at Apple at the time, with creating the phrase in 1981 to describe how Jobs can "convince anyone of practically anything."

The term now has its own acronym, RDF, and a listing on Wikipedia, which defines RDF as "the idea that Steve Jobs is able to convince people to believe almost anything with a mix of charm, charisma, bluster, exaggeration and marketing. RDF is said to distort an audience's sense of proportion or scale. Small advances are applauded as breakthroughs. Interesting developments become turning points, or huge leaps forward."