Apple’s founder and former CEO, Steve Jobs, died of pancreatic cancer on October 5, 2011. During his life, and especially during his time leading Apple, Steven Paul Jobs as Steve Jobs became iconic for his attention to detail, his sense of product design, and his ability to communicate and connect with an audience.
Steve Jobs’ 2007 keynote introducing the iPhone is still maybe the most effective product launch ever. His “one more thing,” phrase became synonymous with Apple’s presentation style.
Jobs life and career is worth revisiting. he co-founded Apple in his parents’ garage in 1976, was ousted in 1985, returned to rescue it from near bankruptcy in 1997, and by the time he died, in October 2011, had built it into the world’s most valuable company. Along the way he helped to transform several industries: personal computing, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, retail stores, and digital publishing.
And what’s most fascinating is that even a decade later; Steve Jobs continues to inspire hundreds of intelligent minds across the globe. He thus belongs to the genre of America’s great innovators, along with Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and Walt Disney, whom history will forever remember how they applied imagination to technology and business.
Jobs was born in San Francisco, California, on February 24, 1955 and put up for adoption, he was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. He attended Reed College in 1972 before dropping out that same year. Of course, he may not have ever started Apple if he’d not dropped out of college. Even that, however, didn’t go according to plan. It was less than 10 years after starting the company with Steve Wozniak that Jobs was fired by Apple’s board.
“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,” said Jobs. “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.”
He traveled through India in 1974 seeking enlightenment and studying Zen Buddhism. His declassified FBI report states that he used marijuana and LSD while he was in college, and once he told a reporter that taking LSD was “one of the two or three most important things” he had done in his life.
Jobs and Wozniak co-founded Apple in 1976 to sell Wozniak’s Apple I personal computer. Together the duo gained fame and wealth a year later with the Apple II, one of the first highly successful mass-produced microcomputers. Jobs saw the commercial potential of the Xerox Alto in 1979, which was mouse-driven and had a graphical user interface (GUI).
This led to the development of the unsuccessful Apple Lisa in 1983, followed by the breakthrough Macintosh in 1984, the first mass-produced computer with a GUI. The Macintosh introduced the desktop publishing industry in 1985 with the addition of the Apple LaserWriter, the first laser printer to feature vector graphics. Jobs was forced out of Apple in 1985 after a long power struggle with the company’s board and its then-CEO John Sculley.
That same year, Jobs took a few of Apple’s members with him to found NeXT, a computer platform development company that specialized in computers for higher-education and business markets. In addition, he helped to develop the visual effects industry when he funded the computer graphics division of George Lucas’s film in 1986. The new company was Pixar, which produced the first 3D computer animated film Toy Story (1995).
Apple acquired NeXT in 1997, and Jobs became CEO of his former company within a few months. He was largely responsible for helping revive Apple, which had been at the verge of bankruptcy. He worked closely with designer Jony Ive to develop a line of products that had larger cultural ramifications, beginning in 1997 with the “Think different” advertising campaign and leading to the iMac, iTunes, iTunes Store, Apple Store, iPod, iPhone, App Store, and the iPad. In 2001, the original Mac OS was replaced with a completely new Mac OS X, based on NeXT’s NeXTSTEP platform, giving the OS a modern Unix-based foundation for the first time.
Jobs was diagnosed with a pancreatic tumor in 2003. He died of respiratory arrest related to the tumor at age 56 on October 5, 2011.
Ten years after Apple founder Steve Jobs’s death, the firm has grown into a colossus of devices and services that is the world’s most valuable company. Tim Cook, who took Apple’s reins in August 2011 tweeted, “People with passion can change the world for the better.”- SJ. Hard to believe it’s been 10 years. Celebrating you today and always.
Apple commemorated the 10th death anniversary of its late co-founder and former CEO Steve Jobs with a short film and a personal statement from his family.
Jobs’ friend and longtime design collaborator Jony Ive also shared these words in a Wall Street Journal exclusive, saying: “Perhaps it is a comment on the daily roar of opinion and the ugly rush to judge, but now, above all else, I miss his singular and beautiful clarity. Beyond his ideas and vision, I miss his insight that brought order to chaos. He was not distracted by money or power, but driven to tangibly express his love and appreciation of our species. He truly believed that by making something useful, empowering and beautiful, we express our love for humanity.”
In Jobs own words, “Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me. Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful… that’s what matters to me.”
(This is an excerpt from ‘Techtonic Shift: A Brief History of Computing and the Web’ by Sohini Bagchi, Editor, CXOToday.com. You can get a copy of the book with Orange Publishers and on Amazon.in)