Remembering Our Friend and Colleague, Jim Seymour
Jim Seymour, one of the nation's most respected technology writers, died late Tuesday in Austin, Texas, of complications from gallbladder surgery.
He was 60 years old.
Few writers come to have as much impact as Jim Seymour. Long before the rise of tech stocks in the late '90s -- when investors and the media first became fascinated with Silicon Valley -- Seymour had already established himself as the subject's most knowledgeable writer and set the tone for many of his colleagues to follow.
In fact, Seymour's accomplishments had already sent ripples throughout all of journalism. In 1988, as the founding editor in chief of PC/Computing, a Ziff-Davis publication, Seymour established a record in magazine publishing by leading PC/Computing to a circulation of 500,000 within its first 10 issues. PC/Computing was later named as a finalist in the National Magazine Awards for general excellence.
Seymour, though, was always one to wear more than one hat. In the late '70s, he founded The Seymour Group, which became an international consulting firm to some of the tech industry's top executives and companies. He also penned two books, Jim Seymour's PC Productivity Bible and Jim Seymour's On the Road, where he detailed how to use a PC in business. Both works established Seymour as the voice of technology, the clear head who could explain PCs and technology in terms that everyone could understand.
This was a monumental breakthrough, especially because tech companies were struggling with how to get their gadgets accepted by workers and consumers who weren't tech-savvy. Frustrated in their struggles to read convoluted instructions, readers looked to Seymour for guidance. And he gave it.
Seymour joined us almost four years ago, with his first "Tech Savvy" column debuting Nov. 12, 1998. Seymour quickly became our technology source. In our daily editors' meeting, when some writer or reader was stumped about a tech company or new gadget, our common remedy was to "get Seymour on the case."
And he always came through.
I, like so many of my colleagues who knew Jim much better than I, was shocked and saddened by his death. Our thoughts go to his wife, Nora Seymour, and their 11-year-old son, Graham.
Jim was a true presence at TheStreet.com, as his colleagues and friends represented here recall.
Editor in Chief
|A Tribute to Jim Seymour
By Michael Dell
Chairman and CEO, Dell Computer
The technology industry we know today -- the one that employs millions of people, serves as the bellwether of the world economy and shoulders global productivity -- was a different industry 20 years ago. Back then, it was an industry with a lot of promise and something to prove, and it was being shaped and shepherded by a small number of people who were cracking the code of what was to come. Jim Seymour was one of those people.
I met Jim in about 1984 when Dell was just a few months old. By then, Jim had a reputation as one of technology's thought leaders, and I couldn't believe my great fortune when he took me under his wing and liberally shared his insights to the world of technology I was entering. Jim was brilliant and used his intellectual horsepower to generate, simplify and interpret complicated ideas. He had an intuitive sense for technology and the marketplace -- what would work, and what mattered to customers. And above all, Jim was direct. He told it like it was, and there was no better sounding board for a young kid with a young company and a great big dream. His counsel, in no small measure, helped guide our thinking and the direction for Dell's success.
Jim was a friend -- a friend of mine, a friend of our company and a friend of an industry that continues to change the world. He and his family are in our prayers.