Wednesday, October 5, 2011

RIP Steve Jobs (Update)

Earlier today, Apple announced that former CEO and Chairman Steve Jobs has passed. Although I am not a huge Apple fan, as you may have guessed from my iPhone 4s post, I appreciate all of the innovations Apple has brought to the tech industry, largely because of Jobs.

In this post, I'd like to take a quick look at Job's life and some of his major accomplishments.

Jobs was born to a Syrian Muslim and an American graduate student. He was adopted to a couple from Mountain View, California. During high school he often attended technology lectures at HP. Jobs was hired at HP for a summer job with soon to be Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak.

Soon Jobs went to Reed College in Oregon where he quickly dropped out, but stayed there sleeping on his friends' dorm room floors listening in on classes. After two years, Jobs returned to California and went to Homebrew Computer Club meetings with Wozniak.

Jobs, Wozniak, and  Ronald Wayne founded Apple. They made the first commercially successful personal computer. As things took off, Jobs convinced Pepsi-Cola CEO John Sculley to come run Apple from a commercial aspect. Jobs and Sculley didn't get along well, and Sculley ended up firing Jobs.

While gone from Apple, Jobs formed a new company called NeXT Computer. NeXT computers were the first PCs to have a built in ethernet port and helped improve the way we communicate through email by adding more graphical support. NeXT later switched solely to software due to poor hardware sales.

Next, Jobs purchased Pixar from Lucas Film for $10 million. Pixar's first commercial success was the movie Toy Story, licensed to Disney, with many other Disney movies following. Disney bought Pixar in 2004 for $7.4 billion, making Jobs Disney's largest single shareholder, with nearly 7% of the company.

In 1996, Apple purchased NeXT from Jobs bringing him back as Apple's CEO. Jobs terminated several projects at Apple and brought it back to profitability. He introduced products like the iMac that are extremely popular to this day.

Apple has since launched the MacBook Air, an ultra light laptop with flash memory instead of a hard drive. This has helped draw attention to this super fast memory solution that may replace hard drives in the near future as it become more cost effective.

Apple also launched the iPod under Jobs direction, revolutionizing the way we enjoy music.

We can't forget the iPhone. The iPhone was the first phone with a multi-touch display which paved the way for intense competition resulting in cell phones as fast as computers.

And the iPad. There were very few tablets before the iPad, but the iPad was the first commercially successful one. Just like the iPhone, the iPad has resulted in innovation from other manufacturers that may not have happened without the iPad.

When you think about it, almost everything tech wise today came about from an Apple innovation.

It certainly says something about Jobs when you find out about his death on an iPad.


Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has released a short video about what Steve Jobs meant to him. You can tell that Steve meant a lot to him from watching the video.


President Obama released a statement late last night which can be viewed here. The second to last sentence says, "And there may be no greater tribute to Steve's success than the fact that much of the world learned of his passing on a device he invented." It sure feels nice to know President Obama liked the ending of this post.

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