Visionary, innovator, inventor, business giant Steve Jobs: "think different".. "There is no reason not to follow your heart."
Steve Jobs in his Los Angeles office in 1981, five years after he co-founded Apple.
Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak in 1976, when they founded Apple. Jobs sold his Volkswagen minibus and Wozniak his two Hewlett-Packard calculators to raise the money they needed.
On the cover of Macworld, a sister publication of Computerworld, in 1984.
During happier times with John Sculley. Jobs lost the helm at Apple in 1985 after a power struggle with Sculley, who was CEO of Apple at the time, and Jobs left to found NEXT.
In 1986, Steve Jobs bought Pixar from George Lucas for less than $10 million. The company later was renamed to Pixar Animation Studios. This photo is from the 2003 opening of 'Finding Nemo'. Pixar was ultimately sold to Walt Disney in 2006.
On the cover of Newsweek magazine in July 2004, after launching the iPod.
Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, then Microsoft's CEO, shared a laugh at the D conference in 2007.
Jobs demonstrates the iPhone in January 2007.
Jobs held up an iPad during the product's announcement on January 17, 2010.
Business giant with poetry in his soul - As Steve Jobs battles cancer, his biographer Michael Moritz pays tribute to the Apple genius.
STEVE JOBS, more than any one other person, has turned modern electronics into objects of desire. He has always possessed the soul of the questioning poet, someone removed from the rest of us who, from an early age, beat his own path.
In 1960s California young Steve took to waking up so early his struggling adoptive parents Paul and Clara bought him a gramophone and some Little Richard records so that he could amuse himself. Later he had to have his stomach pumped after he and an accomplice built a miniature chemical lab from bottles of ant poison.
While still at high school, Jobs entered a science fair for which he built a silicon-controlled rectifier, a device that can be used to control alternating current. Electronics intrigued Jobs but he spent as much time dabbling with artistic and literary pursuits as he did with frequency counters. He studied Shakespeare, idolised his English teacher and was enchanted by movies such as the 1956 French fantasy The Red Balloon.
Jobs virtually fell into Apple for want of anything else to do. During January and February 1976, he started to badger boyhood chum Stephen Wozniak about the possibility of making and selling printed circuit boards so that others could build their own computers. Continuing to work at Atari, he entertained the notion of a fleeting, informal venture that would be more of a partnership between friends than a proper company.
Summoning shades of his dietary regimen and his alternative college days in Oregon, Jobs suggested they call the company Apple Computers.
Aware from the start of the importance of image, Jobs organised a polished corporate address by renting a post office box in Palo Alto. He hired an answering service to give the impression Apple was a steady enterprise. The gradual change from a bloated garage operation into something resembling a corporation was arduous.
Once Apple announced its creation of a disk drive in 1978, orders increased and riches arrived more quickly. A hullabaloo surrounded the introduction of the Macintosh in 1984, but then the notices turned sour. Apple's board fired Jobs.
Jobs sold all but one of his Apple shares and concentrated on shaping a new company that he came to call NeXT. He raised money from investors and persisted when weaker men would have quit. He was weathered by these years and learnt to cope with dire circumstances.
It's hard to appreciate the straits that Apple was in after it bought NeXT for more than $400 million in 1996 in a desperate effort to revive itself even though NeXT had sold only about 50,000 computers.
Steve Jobs returned to Apple. It had lost its creative zest and leadership position in the technology industry.
His response was to roll out an advertising campaign labelled 'Think different', based on black-and-white photographs of remarkable individuals. It was a rallying cry and said in plain terms that the company could not afford to mimic others, but needed to forge its own path. And it has.
When did a founder ever return to the company from which he had been rudely rejected to engineer a turnaround as complete and spectacular as Apple's - Jobs founded Apple not once but twice.
And the second time he was alone. Since 1997, Apple has sold more than 200 million iPods, a billion iTunes songs, 26 million iPhones, and more than 60 million computers. As a sideline, Jobs single-handedly financed and helped shape Pixar, the computer animation company that has more than $5 billion in cumulative box office sales from its immensely popular movies.
Jobs is an insistent, persuasive and mesmerising salesman but he is also a man who, decades ago, was kind enough to visit in hospital a chief executive felled by a stroke and who, more recently, in an avuncular fashion, has offered younger Silicon Valley bosses generous advice.
Jobs's business life deserves to be ranked among the greatest of any American, living or dead.
How Apple Revolutionized Our World
Steve Jobs, An American hero, is wholly authentic because - in addition to being a brilliant, cranky inventor in the mold of Gyro Gearloose or Thomas Edison - he has a hero’s history of failures and false starts that he turned into successes. He is an American hero in another sense, too: a supercool billionaire, the dropout son of the early ’70s counterculture whose seminal text is The Whole Earth Catalog. He is resigning from Apple at the height of his achievement, the pinnacle of his fame, the most gorgeous gracility of his charisma, his fortune growing miraculously in spite of his salary of $1 a year - all without the benefit of a necktie.
We know the world, and each other, better because of him. With his Apple Mac he managed, in the words of Walt Whitman, to "unscrew the locks from the doors"” He precipitated an enlightenment. But as with the dazzling light of many great inventions, unexpected shadows were created—the greatest of which is an eroding of privacy, now verging on a total loss of solitude. Beware of darkness.
The essential things to know about Jobs’s life emerged in a speech he gave in spring 2005 at Stanford University. It was a commencement address, an ungripping form, and yet Jobs’s speech was one of the wisest I have ever read. The style in which he framed the address shows that while the computer world gained a supergeek, the literary world might have lost a powerful storyteller. In fact, his life has a weirdly fictional flavor, as though he’s the embodiment of the urgent dreamer.
Jobs prefaced his Stanford remarks by saying: "I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation." He then told three brief stories - the first about how he had been adopted as an infant; the second about being fired from Apple; the third about being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Three serious reversals that illustrated rejection, exclusion, and near extinction. But he gave significance to each one, saying how it sent him into the wilderness, strengthened him, made him the lateral thinker and innovator we know him to be. Look deeper into Jobs’s influences and you see not microchips and circuit boards but India, the Beatles, LSD, and Buddhism. In the nervous, incurious world of today, these markers are salutary for their apparent waywardness.
I was 50 when I got my first Mac, the SE, with a screen so small it seemed like a squat one-eyed dwarf, with a prim mouth to swallow floppy disks. "It’s real glitchy," the nerd brigade told me when I complained. But every year - often twice a year - thanks to Steve, there was an improved computer to buy, allowing us to write at the speed of light. It is no exaggeration to say that the Mac revolutionized our lives and energized the market. Each new model was an aesthetic pleasure as well as a technological improvement.
This combination of beauty and function is Jobs’s achievement. In the Stanford speech he said that after bailing out of Reed College, he developed an interest in typefaces by dropping in on calligraphy classes. It is just the merest glimpse into the man’s mind, but it reveals something of both his aesthetic sense and his technical shrewdness. This impulsive drop-in, he claimed, accounted for the multiple typefaces on the first Mac.
Now about those shadows. Jobs opened the world, "unscrewed the locks", and made information accessible. But in the hectic transactions of life today, something important has been lost. We older people know it as privacy, almost an unknown concept today. I feel that at some point in the near future, there will be a mournful awakening and the stunning realization "I have given it all away": all our numbers, all our details, all our quirks and secrets and searches, and even our dreams, and we will stand naked. The computer that allowed us to stare in wonder at the world has allowed the world to stare pitilessly back at us.
In public appearances in recent years, Jobs has been thinner, whittled to his essence, and yet somehow this seemed to emphasize his elasticity and endurance, a metonym for his ever-thinner, ever-more-adaptable machines. "Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life," Jobs said toward the end of the Stanford speech. "Because almost everything - all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important... There is no reason not to follow your heart.”
Steve Jobs's resignation was the most discussed in corporate history. Because his illness has been public knowledge for so long, and because Wall Street and the commentariat viewed his health as being synonymous with that of his company, for years Apple share prices have fluctuated with its CEO's temperature. If all the "Whither Apple without Jobs?" articles were laid end to end, they would cover quite a distance - but they never reached a conclusion.
Still, you could understand the hysteria. After all, he's the man who rescued Apple from the near-death experience it underwent in the mid-1990s. When he came back in 1996, the company seemed headed for oblivion. Granted, it was a distinctive, quirky outfit, but one that had been run into the ground by mediocre executives who had no vision, no strategy - and no operating system to power its products into the future.
Jobs came back because Apple bought NeXT, the computer workstation company he had started after being ousted by the Apple board in 1985. By acquiring NeXT, Apple got two things: the operating system that became OS X, the software that underpinned everything Apple has made since; and Jobs as "interim CEO" at a salary of $1 a year. But it was still a corporate minnow: a BMW to Microsoft's Ford. Fifteen years later, Apple had become the most valuable company in the world.
It was the greatest comeback since Lazarus. Because only an obsessive, authoritarian, visionary genius could have achieved such a transformation, it's easy to see why Wall Street has had difficulty imagining Apple without Jobs. He was, after all, the only CEO in the world with rock star status. And Apple is a corporate extension of his remarkable personality, much as Microsoft was of Bill Gates's. But Jobs has something Gates never had - a reputation so powerful as to create a reality distortion field around him.
This field has blinded people to some under-appreciated facts. While it is true, for example, that Apple - under Jobs's influence - is probably the world's best industrial design outfit, it is also a phenomenally well-run company. Proof of that comes from various sources. For example, not only does it regularly dream up beautiful, functional and fantastically complex products, but it gets them to market in working order, on time and to budget; and it has continually done so despite exploding demand. Compare that with slow-motion car crashes such as Hewlett Packard's Touchpad, RIM's BlackBerry Playbook or Microsoft's Vista operating system.
Then there's the way that Apple - in the teeth of industry scepticism - made such an astonishing success of bricks-and-mortar retailing with its high-street stores. Or ponder the fact that it became the world's most valuable corporation without incurring a single cent of debt. Instead, it sits atop a $78bn (£48bn) cash mountain: enough to buy Tesco and BT and still have loose change. Compare that with the casino capitalism practised by so many MBA-educated company leaders in the US. And finally there is the stranglehold Apple now has on a number of crucial modern markets – computers, online music, mobile devices and smartphones.
If you ask people what Steve Jobs is best remembered for, most will name a particular product. If they're from my (baby boomer) generation, it will probably be the Apple Macintosh, a computer that changed many of our lives in the 1980s. Younger generations will credit him with the iMac, iTunes and the iPod. Today's teenagers will revere him for the iPhone. But there's a good argument that Jobs's greatest creation is Apple itself in its post-1996 incarnation. If that's true, the great test of his career legacy is whether the organisation he built around his values will endure and remain faithful to them.
What are those values? He usually expressed them as aphorisms and, as news of his resignation spread, people began raking through them for clues. Many focused on what he said to John Sculley, CEO of Pepsi, when he was trying to persuade him to run Apple. "Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling sugar water," he asked, "or do you want to change the world?" (Sculley accepted the invitation, then presided over Jobs's expulsion.) But for Jobs it was a serious question. What he was asking, as the blogger Umair Haque put it, was: "Do you really want to spend your days slaving over work that fails to inspire, on stuff that fails to count, for reasons that fail to touch the soul of anyone?"
Jobs is famously fanatical about design. In part this is about how things look (though for him it also involves simplicity of use). When the rest of the industry was building computers as grey, rectangular metal boxes, for example, he was prowling department stores and streets looking for design metaphors. For a time he thought the Mac should be like a Porsche. At another stage he wanted it to be like the Cuisinart food-processor. When the machine finally appeared in 1984, Jack Tramiel, the grizzled macho-boss of Commodore, thought it looked like a girly device that would be best sold in boutiques. What Tramiel did not realise - and Jobs did - was that ultimately computers would be consumer products and people would pay a huge premium for classy design.
In that sense he is the polar opposite of the MBA-trained, bean-counting executive. "The cure for Apple is not cost-cutting," he said in 1996, when the company was on the rocks. "The cure for Apple is to innovate its way out of its current predicament." At another point he said: "When you're a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you're not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will ever see it."
This delight in elegant work has always been the most striking aspect of Jobs's celebrated speeches introducing new Apple products in San Francisco. As he cooed over the iMac or the iPhone or the iPad, words like "beautiful", "amazing" and "awesome" tumbled out. For once they didn't sound like cynical, manipulative corporation-speak. He spoke from the heart.
It goes without saying that he is impossible to work with; most geniuses are. Yet he has built - and retained the respect of - the most remarkable design team in living memory, a group that has been responsible for more innovation than the rest of the computer industry put together. For that reason, when the time comes to sum up Jobs's achievements, most will portray him as a seminal figure in the computing industry. But Jobs is bigger than that.
To understand why, you have to look at the major communications industries of the 20th century – the telephone, radio and movies. As Tim Wu chronicles it in his remarkable book, The Master Switch, each of these industries started out as an open, irrationally exuberant, chaotic muddle of incompatible standards, crummy technology and chancers. The pivotal moment in the evolution of each industry came when a charismatic entrepreneur arrived to offer consumers better quality, higher production values and greater ease of use.
With the telephone it was Theodore Vail of AT&T, offering a unified nationwide network and a guarantee that when you picked up the phone you always got a dial tone. With radio it was David Sarnoff, who founded RCA. With movies it was Adolph Zukor, who created the Hollywood studio system.
Jobs is from the same mould. He believes that using a computer should be delightful, not painful; that it should be easy to seamlessly transfer music from a CD on to a hard drive and thence to an elegant portable player; that mobile phones should be powerful handheld computers that happen to make voice calls; and that a tablet computer is the device that is ushering us into a post-PC world. He has offered consumers a better proposition than the rest of the industry could - and they jumped at it. That's how he built Apple into the world's most valuable company. And it's why he is really the last of the media moguls.
In 1975, Larry Press, then an editor of an early computer magazine called Interface Age, asked these two guys called Steve at the famed Homebrew Computer Club for an interview. It was two years before the two Steves, Jobs and Wozniak, would produce what was to be the ground-breaking first personal computer, the Apple II. They were at Homebrew to discuss, and give away the schematics of, this very basic computer, from which originated the Apple Mac computers we today all take for granted.
Press approached Jobs, who was showing off the Apple I that they had hand-wired on a breadboard (the Apple I was famously encased in wood), and asked for an interview. "Only if we [Interface] dedicated a whole issue to Apple, he said," Press remembered this week. "A whole issue on a schematic on a box that hadn't even shipped yet? I was pissed by the kid's arrogance, frankly, and I walked away. "How silly of me. I should've asked for a job right then and there."
In case you haven't noticed, Stephen P Jobs, as the New York Times always refers to him, has resigned as CEO of Apple, the company that started out making computers and went on to revolutionise the music and cellphone industries.
Jobs has played a pivotal role in four industries - computers (with the Apple and then Mac ranges), music (iPod and iTunes), smartphones (iPhone) and film (he was an early investor in Pixar) - and was named CEO of the decade by Fortune.
A man who famously earned an annual salary of $1, Jobs has lived an amazing life and overseen an utterly astounding comeback for the company he co-founded in his parents' garage. (If you haven't read his inspirational Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish speech, you should: http://j.mp/p10Ihs)
After being fired in a corporate reshuffle, by the very man he'd hired, he was rehired as CEO in 1997. He would preside over the most remarkable come-from-behind victory in all of corporate history, overtaking Exxon Mobil in recent weeks to become the most valued company by market capitalisation.
Only 14 years ago Apple was considered bankrupt, as bereft of innovation as the Springbok coaching staff, written off by tech bible Wired, which infamously wrote: "Outsource your hardware production, or scrap it entirely." The magazine gave the then ailing firm 101 tips on how to save itself - including swop to Microsoft's clunky NT operating system - and its June 1997 cover had a one-word headline: "Pray".
What struck me about Press's recollection is how self-confident and certain the young Jobs was.
I was lucky enough to meet Steve Jobs once a few years ago at an Apple expo in Paris. A few weeks before, in September 2005, he had unveiled the latest iPod nano, a slim sliver of a device. Apple had killed off the previous incarnation of the nano, then the best-selling MP3 player in the world. That was the spirit of ruthless innovation I admired in him and Apple.
Arguably his greatest innovation was convincing Big Music to let him sell songs through iTunes, and get the world to pay for content again after the rise of piracy. He did this by making iTunes easier to use and simplified the payments to $0.99.
Apple has "very strong innovation DNA", as he said in Paris. "We're good at making very state-of-the-art technology and making it easy to use for mere mortals who don't want to read manuals." Well done, Mr Jobs.
Shapshak is editor of Stuff magazine
Apple all-star alumni recall Steve Jobs' lessons
In 1984, future billionaire Marc Benioff spent the summer writing code at Apple in Cupertino and marveling at the company co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs had created - there were shiatsu massages at the office, fruit smoothies in the refrigerators and a pirate flag on the roof. "That summer, I discovered it was possible for an entrepreneur to encourage revolutionary ideas," Benioff would later write in his book, "Beyond the Cloud."
Benioff is the founder of Salesforce.com and one of Apple's most prominent alumni, though he is by no means alone. He is among scores of former employees who say they were transformed by their time in Cupertino and their work with Jobs, who announced his resignation as Apple CEO last week.
Prominent Apple alumni include Trip Hawkins, who started Electronic Arts; Andy Rubin, who went on to found the Android operating system and now leads mobile efforts at Google; and Reid Hoffman, who co-founded LinkedIn.
Other alumni have created applications that live on millions of smart phones and tablets sold around the world. Evan Doll, a former iPhone software engineer, left to co-found iPad reader Flipboard. Developer Loren Brichter left Apple and created the popular application Tweetie, which Twitter acquired and turned into its official mobile app. Dave Morin co-created Facebook Platform, which enables developers to build apps on the social network, and Facebook Connect, which allows people to sign in to other websites using their Facebook profiles.
"If you look across the board, from Android to LinkedIn to even Flipboard - these are long-term, big ideas that require great patience and great focus," said Morin, who is now the founder and CEO of San Francisco startup Path, a personal social network built for mobile devices. "If you look at all those entrepreneurs, you see people who are intensely focused, intensely competitive, respectful, good people. They put design first, and really are trying to innovate. And that's all Apple."
Companies started by Apple employees tend to share common values, these entrepreneurs said: simplicity, excellence in design, a willingness to reject ideas, and a relentless focus on a small set of goals. It is no accident, they say, that those are also among Jobs' chief values.
"They tend to start companies that have audacious visions for changing the way people do something," said Matt MacInnis, founder of the digital textbook platform Inkling, who worked in business development for Apple from 2002 to 2009. "You don't see a whole lot of enterprise companies; you don't see ad platforms. You actually see a very narrow sliver of market segments being addressed by ex-Apple employees. We all tend to come at things from a software- or hardware-for-a-person worldview, because that's how Apple operates so intensely at all levels."
That focus on the individual user experience is something associated closely with Jobs, and something Apple alumni strive to emulate. Doll, who led the design of Flipboard, describes Apple's founder as a near-constant presence in the back of his mind, second-guessing his decisions.
"You almost imagine that Steve is in your office," Doll said. "You say to yourself, what would he say about this? When you're kicking around an idea for a product, or for a feature, you'll even say it in discussion - 'Steve Jobs would love this!' or, more often, 'Steve Jobs would say this isn't good enough.' He's like the conscience sitting on your shoulder."
Not everyone appreciated that aspect of Jobs' style. One former Apple executive who left to start another company said Jobs' criticisms often took the form of blistering, expletive-laden verbal assaults that diminished morale. "He wasn't always the greatest human being," said the executive, who requested anonymity so as to preserve a business relationship with Apple.
Hawkins, who worked for Apple from 1978 to 1982, recalls a younger, wilder Jobs who could be difficult to work with. But even in those early years, Hawkins said, he learned lessons from Jobs and Apple that stayed with him as he founded EA: the importance of keeping employees inspired, for one, and the power of selling products directly to consumers instead of relying on distributors.
And then there's marketing savvy. "The biggest gift he gave me personally was understanding how to be a better public speaker - more dramatic, more persuasive," said Hawkins, who led marketing efforts while at Apple and is now CEO of game company Digital Chocolate. "I'm definitely from the Steve Jobs school of public speaking, although I'm nowhere near as good."
Path's Morin said Jobs' willingness to say no became a core strength of the company, and he tries to follow his example. "It's about master craftsmanship - being an expert at your craft. Being the best at something," Morin said. "One of the things I always loved the most about Apple was that everyone was trying as hard as they could to be the best at what they do, and pushing each other. We were never afraid to say, 'This isn't good enough.' Even down to the very last moment."
Doll said Jobs' legacy as a designer may lie in the way he drove employees to forget their own tech savvy to create simpler, more approachable designs in hardware and software.
"You need a counterbalance to that natural geek way of thinking - that way of thinking more is better," he said. "You need a Steve Jobs. If Steve Jobs wouldn't have existed, it would have been necessary for someone to invent him."
Jobs a picture of pain in fight for life
Steve Jobs ended his CEO reign at the technology giant he co-founded in a garage in 1976. His announcement followed news that Apple had surpassed Exxon Mobil as the world's most valuable company -- worth an estimated $341.5 billion.
Mr Jobs, 56, draped in a lightweight, black outfit in Palo Alto, California, where he is resting, looked to be facing a sad end to his long battle with pancreatic cancer. "I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple's CEO, I would be the first to let you know,'' he wrote in a letter to the board of directors. "Unfortunately, that day has come."
He named chief operating officer Tim Cook as his successor and said he looked forward to watching the company he nourished and made into one of the world's most powerful and recognised brands. Mr Jobs will remain board chairman, only relinquishing his seat as chief executive.
The industry icon, who has been on medical leave since January 17, emerged only briefly in March to unveil the iPad 2.
*Update Oct. 6, 2011*
Steve Jobs dies, leaving Apple without its co-founder and visionary innovator [Photo Gallery] Apple co-founder and former CEO Steve Jobs died at age 56 from pancreatic cancer, the company announced Thursday, leaving the technology giant without its visionary.
As Patricia Sullivan reported :
Steve Jobs, a co-founder of Apple Inc., who introduced simple, well-designed computers for people who were more interested in what technology could do than in how it was done, died Wednesday, Oct. 5, at age 56.
In a brief statement, Apple announced the death but did not say where he died. Mr. Jobs, who suffered from a rare form of pancreatic cancer and had a liver transplant in 2009, stepped down as Apple’s chief executive on Aug. 24.
An original thinker who helped create the Macintosh, one of the world’s most influential computers, Mr. Jobs also reinvented the portable music player with the iPod, launched the first successful legal method of selling music online with iTunes and reordered the cellphone market with the iPhone. The introduction of the iPad also jump-started the electronic-tablet market, and it now dominates the field.
Calculating that people would be willing to pay a premium price for products that signaled creativity, Mr. Jobs had a genius for understanding the needs of consumers before they did.
He knew best of all how to market: "Mac or PC?" became one of the defining questions of the late 20th century, and although Apple sold a mere 5 percent of all computers during that era, Mac users became rabid partisans.
Mr. Jobs was the first crossover technology star, turning Silicon Valley renown into Main Street recognition and paving the way for the rise of the nerds, such as Yahoo founders Jerry Yang and David Filo, and Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin.
And by changing the way people interacted with technology, Jobs and Microsoft founder Bill Gates transformed their era in much the same way Henry Ford and John D. Rockefeller revolutionized theirs with the mass-produced automobile and the creation of Standard Oil.
The life and accomplishments of Steve Jobs extend beyond his role in turning Pixar and Apple into the iconic companies they are today. They include his innovative and disruptive inventions and leadership philosophy. As Hank Stuever explained :
Remember a few years ago, when your Apple store on any given Saturday afternoon ceased being the clean, technological zendo you once admired - the place you bought your iMac - and instead became a crowded bazaar of idealized wonder and hopeless waits at the Genius Bar?
The movement spread. People built their lives around the objects Steve Jobs gave them: the MacBook, the iPod, the iPhone, the iPad. What happened with Jobs and Apple over the past decade is one of the rare participatory phenomena of our disconnected and no-longer-common culture. It was as if this generation’s defining event took place in a shopping plaza and then up in the “cloud,” and this time everyone (that is, everyone who could afford Apple products) got to go to Woodstock.
People stopped lining up for concert tickets and started lining up for new phones. This was the future right in front of you. It was sleek, responding to your touch. Imagine explaining an iPad to someone from 1984. They might get it, they might not.
Jobs died Wednesday at age 56 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer that his wasting form came to wear as familiarly as his preference for outdated jeans and black turtlenecks. When news of his death broke around 7:30 p.m. on the East Coast, a good number of us sought immediate solace (to say nothing of information) from our Apple stuff. The rippling tweets and shares fanned outward.
Swipe, swipe, touch. The nighttime news anchors, fearful of the obsolescence that dogs them at every turn, turned to social-media feeds for confirmation of a shared sense of loss; they invited hipster tech writers and thinkers who scorn old-media ways to make themselves available to grieve analytically on the air. (The digital air, that is; in Jobs’s world, we sacrificed the broadcast band to the broadband.) You can easily imagine newspaper assignment desks, similarly afflicted with professional hypochondria, scrambling reporters to Apple stores to gather quotes from the bereaved.
That is what Steve Jobs gave us: the future. A sense of ourselves moving forward into this century, which has proved especially hard to do, with its lack of employment opportunities and its addiction to panic. He gave us a look at the future and all the ambivalence and worry that comes with it. It was the most elegant form of social disruption, and now your kids won’t glance up from their iPhones. They’ll never need to.
Steve Jobs's death struck like John Lennon, JFK getting shot: Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak
Steve Wozniak, who started Apple with high-school friend Steve Jobs in a California garage more than three decades ago, said news of his partner's death struck him just like the shootings of John Lennon and John F. Kennedy.
"I'm just totally awestruck, a bit shocked, a bit surprised," Wozniak, 61, said in an interview with Bloomberg. "I did not expect it. It felt a lot like you just heard that, you know, John Lennon got shot, or JFK, or Martin Luther King."
Jobs, 56, who resigned as Apple's chief executive officer in August, died yesterday, the Cupertino, California-based company said. He was diagnosed in 2003 with a neuroendocrine tumour, a rare form of pancreatic cancer, and had a liver transplant in 2009.
June 17, 2012 - Apple 1 computer and Steve Jobs Atari memo sold at auction
A rare functioning Apple 1 computer - the company's first product - has been sold at an auction for $374,500 (£240,929). The price was more than double Sotheby's high estimate and sets a new record for the collector's item.
A memo written by the firm's co-founder Steve Jobs when he worked at Atari sold for $27,500 at the same New York event. The original estimate for the four-page handwritten note was up to $15,000.
Only about 200 Apple 1s were ever created. The computers were hand-built by Apple's co-founder Steve Wozniak and originally sold for $666.66 (£426) as a fully assembled circuit board. He later said he picked a sum with a repeating number "because it was just an easier way to type".
Only about 50 Apple 1s are still believed to be in existence. The auctioned model is one of the very few that still works.
The Atari memo was written in 1974 and consists of four pages detailing the late Steve Jobs' thoughts on how to improve its arcade football game World Cup. He was 19 years old at the time. The pages include circuit drawings and diagrams showing how the paddle-based game could be made more fun to play.
The notes are stamped with Mr Jobs' Los Altos home address and a Buddhist mantra - "gate gate paragate parasangate bodhi svahdl". It translates as: "Going, going, going on beyond, always going on beyond, always becoming Buddha."
Steve Jobs, who died a year ago, was an IT visionary who turned around Apple, teetering on bankruptcy in 1996, and was responsible for changing how regular users view technology.
One way to know if a person had made an relevant impact in his or her lifetime is when people write about how the world is different a year after that person left it.
Steve Jobs was indeed a world-changer. He founded Apple Computer, a company so big, so successful, that thousands of customers wait in line -- sometimes for days at a time -- just to get a chance to buy its products. Sometimes movies or concert acts draw that kind of attention, but if you try and name another products company that does what Apple does once or twice a year at its launches, you'd be hard-pressed to name one.
Jobs died Oct. 5, 2011 at 56 after an eight-year battle against pancreatic cancer, but he had already upgraded the way the world communicates. The visionary who turned around Apple, teetering on bankruptcy in 1996, was responsible for changing how regular users view technology. He transformed computing with the iMac, iPod, iPhone and iPad, changed how people consume data, and upended the world of music marketing with iTunes.
Big Changes in One Generation
Jobs and partner Steve Wozniak co-founded Apple in 1977 and in the span of one generation changed the way the world uses personal information. He was a famous micro-manager with big ideas that resonated around the world and back millions of times.
Looking at the year since his passing, things continue to go very well at the company. Apple since his death has officially become the most valuable company in the world with a current book value of about $612 billion and a stock price of $652 (both as of Oct. 5, 2012), surpassing GE, Microsoft, IBM and Hewlett-Packard and Exxon Mobile.
Since Jobs' death, the company has produced two new versions of its super-popular iPhone and is about to debut a smaller version of its equally popular iPad tablet on Oct. 17. Productions rolls along, as if Jobs' spirit is still moving through the halls and meeting rooms of the company's Cupertino, Calif. campus.
His hand-picked successor, Tim Cook, understands the operational side of the IT products and services business. He's never pretended to be a visionary like his mentor, nor should he -- or anybody else -- ever assume that type of attitude.
Some people have written that with Jobs out of the picture, that Apple is a rudderless ship that eventually will be grounded by lack of a visionary at the top. This isn't necessarily the case. True, all companies have their good waves and bad swells during their lifetimes -- in the IT business, a quick look at IBM, Hewlett-Packard and Apple itself bear this out -- but Apple doesn't absolutely need another Jobs at this time to keep it producing as well as it has.
Enormous Imprint Still in Evidence
Why? Because of the enormous imprint Jobs made on his company culture, his customers, and the IT world in general. His presence was so ubiquitous, so unforgettable in the halls of his company, in boardrooms and in press conferences that his spirit is not going to fade away anytime soon.
People who worked side by side with him know how he operated. I personally know people at Apple who so respected and feared him that they sometimes avoided getting in an elevator with him, especially near product launch time. He was that intense, and this has rubbed off on many people over the years. They are not forgetting the lessons they have learned.
On the other hand, some people may have forgotten that Jobs had left Apple for 11 years (from 1985 to 1996) after being fired by his own board of directors following a long internal battle. In the interim, he learned more about how to be a CEO and went on to work on other projects, including NeXT Computer and Pixar Animation Studios.
By the time he returned in 1996, Apple was nearly bankrupt. Sun Microsystems, now absorbed by Oracle but then in its heyday, was very close to announcing the purchase of the company, but legal red tape held up the deal and it was never consummated. (For more detail on this, read the Feb. 25, 2011 eWEEK article "How Apple Dodged a Sun Buyout: Former Execs McNealy, Zander Tell All.")
The company survived then, and it will survive for a long while to come. Most of Apple's key product designers and software developers remain in place, and the company's reputation has never been stronger. Sales have never been better.
One can only surmise that Jobs himself is looking down on his creation and smiling -- a really intense smile.
October 05, 2012 - 5 Incredible Apple Products Designed By Steve Jobs We Still Haven’t Seen [Feature] The visionary co-founder of Apple, Steve Jobs, may have been dead for a year today, but the fruits of his incredible imagination, indefatigable quest for perfection and keen design eye are still ripening and shaking from the tree of the company that he created. The recently released iPhone 5 and new Lightning Connectors were approved by him before he died, the upcoming iPad mini was greenlit personally by Steve, and Apple’s upcoming roadmap for the next couple of years will probably be filled with projects that he personally oversaw.
Some of Steve Jobs’s last unrealized products loom larger than others, though. Here are the five incredible products from Steve Jobs that we still haven’t seen - iPad mini, iCar, Spaceship Campus, iYacht, iTV...
*update* 02 June 2013 -
In One Of His Most Revealing Quotes, Tim Cook Explains His Strategy For Running Apple Tim Cook gave one of his most revealing quotes to date about how he's running Apple in an interview at Duke's Fuqua School of Business.
Q - "What qualities do you look for in terms of what you think will produce effective collaboration?And what's your role as CEO in fostering that kind of collaboration?"
A - "You look for people that are not political. People that are not bureaucrats. People that can privately celebrate the achievement, but not care if their name that is in the one in the lights. There are greater reasons to do things."
*update* 22 August 2014
Steve Jobs' 2005 Commencement Speech Is Hidden In Every Mac Computer as likely the commencement speech he gave in 2005 at Stanford University — and as it turns out, an awesome Easter egg hides that very speech in your Mac. As noted by OS X Daily earlier this week, Apple has hidden an awesome easter egg in Mac computers, and it takes just a few seconds to uncover it. Simply press Command + Shift + G while in Finder to open the Go To Folder box, and then paste the following path:
In this folder you’ll see a file called Apple.txt. Open it in any text editor or word processor and you’ll see Jobs’ speech, which is pasted below in its entirety:
I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That’s it. No big deal. Just three stories.
The first story is about connecting the dots.
I dropped out of Reed College after the first six months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?
It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: “We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?” They said: “Of course.” My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.
And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents’ savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn’t see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.
It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned Coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me give you one example:
Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn’t have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.
None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me. And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And since Windows just copied the Mac, it’s likely that no personal computer would have them. If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.
Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.
My second story is about love and loss.
I was lucky — I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parents garage when I was 20. We worked hard, and in 10 years Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a $2 billion company with over 4000 employees. We had just released our finest creation — the Macintosh — a year earlier, and I had just turned 30. And then I got fired. How can you get fired from a company you started? Well, as Apple grew we hired someone who I thought was very talented to run the company with me, and for the first year or so things went well. But then our visions of the future began to diverge and eventually we had a falling out. When we did, our Board of Directors sided with him. So at 30 I was out. And very publicly out. What had been the focus of my entire adult life was gone, and it was devastating.
I really didn’t know what to do for a few months. I felt that I had let the previous generation of entrepreneurs down – that I had dropped the baton as it was being passed to me. I met with David Packard and Bob Noyce and tried to apologize for screwing up so badly. I was a very public failure, and I even thought about running away from the valley. But something slowly began to dawn on me — I still loved what I did. The turn of events at Apple had not changed that one bit. I had been rejected, but I was still in love. And so I decided to start over.
I didn’t see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.
During the next five years, I started a company named NeXT, another company named Pixar, and fell in love with an amazing woman who would become my wife. Pixar went on to create the world’s first computer animated feature film, ‘Toy Story,’ and is now the most successful animation studio in the world. In a remarkable turn of events, Apple bought NeXT, I returned to Apple, and the technology we developed at NeXT is at the heart of Apple’s current renaissance. And Laurene and I have a wonderful family together.
I’m pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn’t been fired from Apple. It was awful tasting medicine, but I guess the patient needed it. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith. I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.
My third story is about death.
When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.
Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.
About a year ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a scan at 7:30 in the morning, and it clearly showed a tumor on my pancreas. I didn’t even know what a pancreas was. The doctors told me this was almost certainly a type of cancer that is incurable, and that I should expect to live no longer than three to six months. My doctor advised me to go home and get my affairs in order, which is doctor’s code for prepare to die. It means to try to tell your kids everything you thought you’d have the next 10 years to tell them in just a few months. It means to make sure everything is buttoned up so that it will be as easy as possible for your family. It means to say your goodbyes.
I lived with that diagnosis all day. Later that evening I had a biopsy, where they stuck an endoscope down my throat, through my stomach and into my intestines, put a needle into my pancreas and got a few cells from the tumor. I was sedated, but my wife, who was there, told me that when they viewed the cells under a microscope the doctors started crying because it turned out to be a very rare form of pancreatic cancer that is curable with surgery. I had the surgery and I’m fine now.
This was the closest I’ve been to facing death, and I hope it’s the closest I get for a few more decades. Having lived through it, I can now say this to you with a bit more certainty than when death was a useful but purely intellectual concept:
No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.
Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.
When I was young, there was an amazing publication called The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960′s, before personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all made with typewriters, scissors, and polaroid cameras. It was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before Google came along: it was idealistic, and overflowing with neat tools and great notions.
Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: “Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you.
Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.
Thank you all very much.”
This article was originally published on BGR.com
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