Steven Paul “Steve” Jobs (February 24, 1955 – October 5, 2011) was an American inventor and entrepreneur. He was co-founder, chairman, and chief executive officer of Apple Inc. Jobs also previously served as chief executive of Pixar Animation Studios; he became a member of the board of directors of the Walt Disney Company in 2006, following the acquisition of Pixar by Disney.
In the late 1970s, Jobs—along with Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, Mike Markkula and others—designed, developed, and marketed one of the first commercially successful lines of personal computers, the Apple II series. In the early 1980s, Jobs was among the first to see the commercial potential of Xerox PARC’s mouse-driven graphical user interface, which led to the creation of the Macintosh.After losing a power struggle with the board of directors in 1985, Jobs left Apple and founded NeXT, a computer platform development company specializing in the higher-education and business markets.
In 1986, he acquired the computer graphics division of Lucasfilm Ltd, which was spun off as Pixar Animation Studios.He was credited in Toy Story (1995) as an executive producer.He remained CEO and majority shareholder at 50.1 percent until its acquisition by The Walt Disney Company in 2006,making Jobs Disney’s largest individual shareholder at seven percent and a member of Disney’s Board of Directors.Apple’s 1996 buyout of NeXT brought Jobs back to the company he
co-founded, and he served as its interim CEO from 1997, then becoming
permanent CEO from 2000, onwards.
After resigning as CEO in August 2011, Jobs was elected chairman of
Apple’s board of directors and held that title until his death.
On October 5, 2011, Jobs died in California at age 56, seven years after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. On his death he was widely described as a visionary, pioneer and
genius—perhaps one of the foremost—in the field of business, innovation,
and product design, and a man who had profoundly changed the face of
the modern world, revolutionized at least six different industries, and
who was an “exemplar for all chief executives”. His death was widely
mourned and considered a loss to the world by commentators across the
Jobs was born in San Francisco and was adopted by the family of Paul Jobs and Clara Jobs (née Hagopian) who moved to Mountain View, California when Jobs was five years old.
Paul and Clara later adopted a daughter, Patti. Paul Jobs, a machinist
for a company that made lasers, taught his son rudimentary electronics
and how to work with his hands.His adoptive mother was an accountant.
Asked in a 1995 interview what he wanted to pass on to his children,
Jobs replied, “Just to try to be as good a father to them as my father
was to me. I think about that every day of my life.” Paul and Clara Jobs
were his “true parents,” he told an interviewer when asked about his
“adoptive parents.” “They were my parents,” he told the interviewer
emphatically.Jobs’ biological parents—Abdulfattah John Jandali, a Syrian Muslim immigrant to the U.S.,who later became a political science professor at the University of Nevada and is presently a vice president of Boomtown Hotel Casino in Reno, Nevada, and Joanne Schieble (later Simpson), an American graduate student of Swiss and German ancestry who went on to become a speech language pathologist—eventuallymarried. The marriage produced Jobs’s biological sister, novelist Mona Simpson;
the two of them first met in 1986, as adults and enjoyed a close
relationship, with Jobs regularly visiting Simpson in Manhattan. From
Simpson, Jobs learned more about their birth parents and he invited his
biological mother Joanne to some events. Jandali claims that he didn’t want to put Jobs up for adoption but that
Simpson’s parents did not approve of her marrying a Syrian. Jandali’s
few attempts to contact Jobs were unsuccessful; Jobs did not contact his biological father either.Jandali gave an interview to The Sun
in August 2011, when Jobs resigned as CEO of Apple; Jandali also mailed
in his medical history after Jobs’s pancreatic disorder was made public
Jobs attended Cupertino Junior High and Homestead High School in Cupertino, California. He frequented after-school lectures at the Hewlett-Packard Company in Palo Alto, California, and was later hired there, working with Steve Wozniak as a summer employee. Following high school graduation in 1972, Jobs enrolled at Reed College in Portland, Oregon. Although he dropped out after only one semester,he continued auditing
classes at Reed, while sleeping on the floor in friends’ rooms,
returning Coke bottles for food money, and getting weekly free meals at
the local Hare Krishna temple.Jobs later said, “If I had never dropped in on that single calligraphy course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts.”
In the fall of 1974, Jobs returned to California and began attending meetings of the Homebrew Computer Club with Wozniak. He took a job as a technician at Atari, a manufacturer of popular video games, with the primary intent of saving money for a spiritual retreat to India.
Jobs then traveled to India to visit Neem Karoli Baba at his Kainchi Ashram with a Reed College friend (and, later, the first Apple employee), Daniel Kottke, in search of spiritual enlightenment. He came back a Buddhist with his head shaved and wearing traditional Indian clothing. During this time, Jobs experimented with psychedelics, calling his LSD experiences “one of the two or three most important things [he had] done in [his] life”. He later said that people around him who did not share his countercultural roots could not fully relate to his thinking
Jobs returned to his previous job at Atari and was given the task of creating a circuit board for the game Breakout. According to Atari founder Nolan Bushnell,
Atari offered $100 for each chip that was eliminated in the machine.
Jobs had little interest in or knowledge of circuit board design and
made a deal with Wozniak to split the bonus evenly between them if
Wozniak could minimize the number of chips. Much to the amazement of
Atari, Wozniak reduced the number of chips by 50, a design so tight that
it was impossible to reproduce on an assembly line. According to
Wozniak, Jobs told Wozniak that Atari gave them only $700 (instead of
the offered $5,000) and that Wozniak’s share was thus $350.
In 1976, Jobs, Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne founded Apple, with later funding from a then-semi-retired Intel product-marketing manager and engineer A.C. “Mike” Markkula Jr..
Prior to co-founding Apple, Wozniak was an electronics hacker. Jobs and
Wozniak met in 1971, when their mutual friend, Bill Fernandez,
introduced 21-year-old Wozniak to 16-year-old Jobs. Friends for several
years, Jobs managed to interest Wozniak in assembling a computer and
selling it. As Apple continued to expand, the company began looking for an experienced executive to help manage its expansion.
In 1978, Apple recruited Mike Scott from National Semiconductor to serve as CEO for what turned out to be several turbulent years. In 1983, Jobs lured John Sculley away from Pepsi-Cola
to serve as Apple’s CEO, asking, “Do you want to sell sugar water for
the rest of your life, or do you want to come with me and change the
world?” Apple president Mike Markkula
also wanted to retire and believed that Jobs lacked the discipline and
temperament needed to run Apple on a daily basis and that Sculley’s
conventional business background and recent successes would give a more
favorable image.
The following year, Apple aired a Super Bowl television commercial titled “1984“. At Apple’s annual shareholders meeting on January 24, 1984, an emotional Jobs introduced the Macintosh to a wildly enthusiastic audience; Andy Hertzfeld described the scene as “pandemonium”. The Macintosh became the first commercially successful small computer with a graphical user interface.
While Jobs was a persuasive and charismatic director for Apple, some
of his employees from that time described him as an erratic and
temperamental manager. An industry-wide sales slump towards the end of
1984, caused a deterioration in Jobs’s working relationship with Sculley
as well as layoffs and disappointing sales performance. An internal
power struggle developed between Jobs and Sculley. Jobs kept meetings running past midnight, sent out lengthy faxes, then called new meetings at 7 am.
The Apple board of directors instructed Sculley to “contain” Jobs and
limit his ability to launch expensive forays into untested products.
Sculley learned that Jobs – believing Sculley to be “bad for Apple” and
the wrong person to lead the company – had been attempting to organize a
boardroom coup, and on 24 May 1985
he called a board meeting to resolve the matter. Apple’s board of
directors sided with Sculley and removed Jobs from his managerial duties
as head of the Macintosh division. Jobs resigned from Apple 5 months later and founded NeXT Inc. the same year.
Jobs later claimed that being fired from Apple was the best thing
that could have happened to him; “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
After leaving Apple, Jobs founded NeXT Computer
in 1985, with $7 million. A year later, Jobs was running out of money,
and with no product on the horizon, he appealed for venture capital.
Eventually, he attracted the attention of billionaire Ross Perot who invested heavily in the company. NeXT workstations were first released in 1990, priced at $9,999. Like the Apple Lisa,
the NeXT workstation was technologically advanced, but was largely
dismissed as cost-prohibitive by the educational sector for which it was
designed. The NeXT workstation was known for its technical strengths, chief among them its object-oriented
software development system. Jobs marketed NeXT products to the
financial, scientific, and academic community, highlighting its
innovative, experimental new technologies, such as the Mach kernel, the digital signal processor chip, and the built-in Ethernet port.
The revised, second-generation NeXTcube
was released in 1990, also. Jobs touted it as the first “interpersonal”
computer that would replace the personal computer. With its innovative NeXTMail
multimedia email system, NeXTcube could share voice, image, graphics,
and video in email for the first time. “Interpersonal computing is going
to revolutionise human communications and groupwork”, Jobs told
Jobs ran NeXT with an obsession for aesthetic perfection, as evidenced
by the development of and attention to NeXTcube’s magnesium case.
This put considerable strain on NeXT’s hardware division, and in 1993,
after having sold only 50,000 machines, NeXT transitioned fully to
software development with the release of NeXTSTEP/Intel. The company reported its first profit of $1.03 million in 1994. In 1996, NeXT Software, Inc. released WebObjects,
a framework for web application development. After NeXT was acquired by
Apple Inc. in 1997, WebObjects was used to build and run the Apple Store, MobileMe services, and the iTunes Store.
Pixar and Disney
In 1986, Jobs bought The Graphics Group (later renamed Pixar) from Lucasfilm‘s computer graphics division for the price of $10 million, $5 million of which was given to the company as capital.
The new company, which was originally based at Lucasfilm‘s Kerner Studios in San Rafael, California, but has since relocated to Emeryville, California, was initially intended to be a high-end graphics hardware developer. After years of unprofitability selling the Pixar Image Computer, it contracted with Disney to produce a number of computer-animated feature films that Disney would co-finance and distribute.
The first film produced by the partnership, Toy Story,
brought fame and critical acclaim to the studio when it was released in
1995. Over the next 15 years, under Pixar’s creative chief John Lasseter, the company produced box-office hits A Bug’s Life (1998); Toy Story 2 (1999); Monsters, Inc. (2001); Finding Nemo (2003); The Incredibles (2004); Cars (2006); Ratatouille (2007); WALL-E (2008); Up (2009); and Toy Story 3 (2010). Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Ratatouille, WALL-E, Up and Toy Story 3 each received the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, an award introduced in 2001.
In the years 2003, and 2004, as Pixar’s contract with Disney was running out, Jobs and Disney chief executive Michael Eisner tried but failed to negotiate a new partnership,
and in early 2004, Jobs announced that Pixar would seek a new partner
to distribute its films once its contract with Disney expired.
In October 2005, Bob Iger
replaced Eisner at Disney, and Iger quickly worked to patch up
relations with Jobs and Pixar. On January 24, 2006, Jobs and Iger
announced that Disney had agreed to purchase Pixar in an all-stock
transaction worth $7.4 billion. Once the deal closed, Jobs became The Walt Disney Company‘s largest single shareholder with approximately seven percent of the company’s stock. Jobs’s holdings in Disney far exceed those of Eisner, who holds 1.7 percent, and of Disney family member Roy E. Disney,
who until his 2009 death held about one percent of the company’s stock
and whose criticisms of Eisner—especially that he soured Disney’s
relationship with Pixar—accelerated Eisner’s ousting. Jobs joined the
company’s board of directors upon completion of the merger. Jobs also
helped oversee Disney and Pixar’s combined animation businesses with a
seat on a special six person steering committee.
Return to Apple
In 1996, Apple announced that it would buy NeXT for $429 million. The deal was finalized in late 1996, bringing Jobs back to the company he co-founded. Jobs became de facto chief after then-CEO Gil Amelio was ousted in July 1997. He was formally named interim chief executive in September. In March 1998, to concentrate Apple’s efforts on returning to profitability, Jobs terminated a number of projects, such as Newton, Cyberdog, and OpenDoc.
In the coming months, many employees developed a fear of encountering
Jobs while riding in the elevator, “afraid that they might not have a
job when the doors opened. The reality was that Jobs’s summary
executions were rare, but a handful of victims was enough to terrorize a
whole company.” Jobs also changed the licensing program for Macintosh clones, making it too costly for the manufacturers to continue making machines.
With the purchase of NeXT, much of the company’s technology found its way into Apple products, most notably NeXTSTEP, which evolved into Mac OS X. Under Jobs’s guidance the company increased sales significantly with the introduction of the iMac
and other new products; since then, appealing designs and powerful
branding have worked well for Apple. At the 2000 Macworld Expo, Jobs
officially dropped the “interim” modifier from his title at Apple and
became permanent CEO. Jobs quipped at the time that he would be using the title ‘iCEO.’
The company subsequently branched out, introducing and improving upon other digital appliances. With the introduction of the iPod portable music player, iTunes digital music software, and the iTunes Store,
the company made forays into consumer electronics and music
distribution. On June 29, 2007, Apple entered the cellular phone
business with the introduction of the iPhone, a multi-touch
display cell phone, which also included the features of an iPod and,
with its own mobile browser, revolutionized the mobile browsing scene.
While stimulating innovation, Jobs also reminded his employees that
“real artists ship”, by which he meant that delivering working products on time is as important as innovation and attractive design.
Jobs was both admired and criticized for his consummate skill at persuasion and salesmanship, which has been dubbed the “reality distortion field” and was particularly evident during his keynote speeches (colloquially known as “Stevenotes“) at Macworld Expos and at Apple Worldwide Developers Conferences.
In 2005, Jobs responded to criticism of Apple’s poor recycling programs for e-waste
in the U.S. by lashing out at environmental and other advocates at
Apple’s Annual Meeting in Cupertino in April. A few weeks later, Apple
announced it would take back iPods for free at its retail stores. The Computer TakeBack Campaign responded by flying a banner from a plane over the Stanford University graduation at which Jobs was the commencement speaker.
The banner read “Steve—Don’t be a mini-player recycle all e-waste”. In
2006, he further expanded Apple’s recycling programs to any U.S.
customer who buys a new Mac. This program includes shipping and
“environmentally friendly disposal” of their old systems.
In August 2011, Jobs resigned as CEO of Apple, but remained at the company as chairman of the company’s board. Hours after the announcement, Apple Inc. (AAPL) shares dropped five percent in after-hour trading.
The relatively small drop, when considering the importance of Jobs to
Apple, was associated with the fact that Jobs’s health had been in the
news for several years, and he was on medical leave since January 2011. It was believed, according to Forbes, that the impact would be felt in a negative way beyond Apple, including at The Walt Disney Company where Jobs served as director. In after-hour trading on the day of the announcement, Walt Disney Co. (DIS) shares dropped 1.5 percent.
Even though Jobs earned only $1 a year as CEO of Apple,
he held 5.426 million Apple shares, as well as 138 million shares in
Disney (which he received in exchange for Disney’s acquisition of
Jobs quipped that the $1 per annum he was paid by Apple was based on
attending one meeting for 50 cents while the other 50 cents was based on
his performance. Forbes estimated his net wealth at $8.3 billion in 2010, making him the 42nd wealthiest American.
Stock options backdating issue
In 2001, Jobs was granted stock options in the amount of 7.5 million
shares of Apple with an exercise price of $18.30. It was alleged that
the options had been backdated,
and that the exercise price should have been $21.10. It was further
alleged that Jobs had thereby incurred taxable income of $20,000,000
that he did not report, and that Apple overstated its earnings by that
same amount. As a result, Jobs potentially faced a number of criminal
charges and civil penalties. The case is the subject of active criminal
and civil government investigations,
though an independent internal Apple investigation completed on
December 29, 2006, found that Jobs was unaware of these issues and that
the options granted to him were returned without being exercised in
On July 1, 2008, a $7 billion class action suit was filed against
several members of the Apple Board of Directors for revenue lost due to
the alleged securities fraud.
Jobs was a demanding perfectionist
who always aspired to position his businesses and their products at the
forefront of the information technology industry by foreseeing and
setting trends, at least in innovation and style. He summed up that
self-concept at the end of his keynote speech at the Macworld Conference and Expo in January 2007, by quoting ice hockey player Wayne Gretzky:
There’s an old Wayne Gretzky quote that I love. ‘I skate to where the
puck is going to be, not where it has been.’ And we’ve always tried to
do that at Apple. Since the very very beginning. And we always will.
Much was made of Jobs’s aggressive and demanding personality. Fortune wrote that he was “considered one of Silicon Valley’s leading egomaniacs“. Commentaries on his temperamental style can be found in Mike Moritz‘s The Little Kingdom,The Second Coming of Steve Jobs, by Alan Deutschman; and iCon: Steve Jobs, by Jeffrey S. Young & William L. Simon. In 1993, Jobs made Fortune‘s list of America’s Toughest Bosses in regard to his leadership of NeXT. Cofounder Dan’l Lewin was quoted in Fortune
as saying of that period, “The highs were unbelievable … But the lows
were unimaginable”, to which Jobs’s office replied that his personality
had changed since then.
In 2005, Jobs banned all books published by John Wiley & Sons from Apple Stores in response to their publishing an unauthorized biography, iCon: Steve Jobs. In its 2010 annual earnings report, Wiley said it had “closed a deal … to make its titles available for the iPad.” Jef Raskin,
a former colleague, once said that Jobs “would have made an excellent
king of France,” alluding to Jobs’s compelling and larger-than-life
persona. Floyd Norman said that at Pixar, Jobs was a “mature, mellow individual” and never interfered with the creative process of the filmmakers.
Jobs had a public war of words with Dell Computer CEO Michael Dell, starting[when?] when Jobs first criticized Dell for making “un-innovative beige boxes”. On October 6, 1997, in a Gartner
Symposium, when Michael Dell was asked what he would do if he owned
then-troubled Apple Computer, he said “I’d shut it down and give the
money back to the shareholders.” In 2006, Jobs sent an email to all employees when Apple’s market capitalization rose above Dell’s. The email read:
Team, it turned out that Michael Dell wasn’t perfect at predicting
the future. Based on today’s stock market close, Apple is worth more
than Dell. Stocks go up and down, and things may be different tomorrow,
but I thought it was worth a moment of reflection today. Steve.
As of October 9, 2011, Jobs is listed as either primary inventor or
co-inventor in 342 US patents or patent applications related to a range
of technologies from actual computer and portable devices to user
interfaces (including touch-based), speakers, keyboards, power adapters,
staircases, clasps, sleeves, lanyards and packages.
Arik Hesseldahl of BusinessWeek magazine opined that “Jobs isn’t widely known for his association with philanthropic causes”, compared to Bill Gates‘ efforts. After resuming control of Apple in 1997, Jobs eliminated all corporate philanthropy programs.
Jobs married Laurene Powell on March 18, 1991. Presiding over the wedding was the Zen Buddhist monk Kobun Chino Otogawa. The couple have a son and two daughters. Jobs also has a daughter, Lisa Brennan-Jobs (born 1978), from his relationship with Bay Area painter Chrisann Brennan.
For two years, she raised their daughter on welfare when Jobs denied
paternity by claiming he was sterile; he later acknowledged Lisa as his
In the unauthorized biography, The Second Coming of Steve Jobs, author Alan Deutschman reports that Jobs once dated Joan Baez.
Deutschman quotes Elizabeth Holmes, a friend of Jobs from his time at
Reed College, as saying she “believed that Steve became the lover of
Joan Baez in large measure because Baez had been the lover of Bob Dylan” (Dylan was the Apple icon’s favorite musician). The biography also notes that Jobs went out with actress Diane Keaton briefly. In another unauthorized biography, iCon: Steve Jobs
by Jeffrey S. Young & William L. Simon, the authors suggest that
Jobs might have married Baez, but her age at the time (41) meant it was
unlikely the couple could have children.
Jobs was also a fan of The Beatles. He referred to them on multiple occasions at Keynotes and also was interviewed on a showing of a Paul McCartney concert. When asked about his business model on 60 Minutes, he replied:
My model for business is The Beatles: They were four guys that kept
each other’s negative tendencies in check; they balanced each other. And
the total was greater than the sum of the parts. Great things in
business are never done by one person, they are done by a team of
In 1982, Jobs bought an apartment in The San Remo, an apartment building in New York City with a politically progressive reputation, where Demi Moore, Steven Spielberg, Steve Martin, and Princess Yasmin Aga Khan, daughter of Rita Hayworth, also had apartments. With the help of I.M. Pei,
Jobs spent years renovating his apartment in the top two floors of the
building’s north tower, only to sell it almost two decades later to U2 singer Bono. Jobs never moved in.
In 1984, Jobs purchased a 17,000-square-foot (1,600 m2), 14-bedroom Spanish Colonial mansion, designed by George Washington Smith, in Woodside, California (also known as Jackling House).
Although it reportedly remained in an almost unfurnished state, Jobs
lived in the mansion for almost ten years. According to reports, he kept
an old BMW motorcycle in the living room, and let Bill Clinton
use it in 1998. From the early 1990s, Jobs lived in a house in the Old
Palo Alto neighborhood of Palo Alto. President Clinton dined with Jobs
and 14 Silicon Valley CEOs there on August 7, 1996, at a meal catered by
Greens Restaurant. Clinton returned the favor and Jobs, who was a Democratic donor, slept in the Lincoln bedroom of the White House.
Jobs allowed Jackling House to fall into a state of disrepair,
planning to demolish the house and build a smaller home on the property;
but he met with complaints from local preservationists over his plans.
In June 2004, the Woodside Town Council gave Jobs approval to demolish
the mansion, on the condition that he advertise the property for a year
to see if someone would move it to another location and restore it. A
number of people expressed interest, including several with experience
in restoring old property, but no agreements to that effect were
reached. Later that same year, a local preservationist group began
seeking legal action to prevent demolition. In January 2007, Jobs was
denied the right to demolish the property, by a court decision. The court decision was overturned on appeal in March 2010, and the mansion was demolished beginning February 2011.
Jobs usually wore a black long-sleeved mock turtleneck made by St. Croix, Levi’s 501 blue jeans, and New Balance 991 sneakers. He was a pescetarian, one whose diet includes fish but no other meat.
His car was a silver 2008 Mercedes SL 55 AMG, which does not display its license plates.
In mid-2004, Jobs announced to his employees that he had been diagnosed with a cancerous tumor in his pancreas. The prognosis for pancreatic cancer is usually very poor; Jobs, however, stated that he had a rare, far less aggressive type known as islet cell neuroendocrine tumor. Jobs resisted his doctors’ recommendations for evidence-based medical intervention for nine months, instead consuming a special alternative medicine diet to thwart the disease, before eventually undergoing a pancreaticoduodenectomy (or “Whipple procedure”) in July 2004, that appeared to successfully remove the tumor. Jobs apparently did not require nor receive chemotherapy or radiation therapy. During Jobs’s absence, Timothy D. Cook, head of worldwide sales and operations at Apple, ran the company.
In early August 2006, Jobs delivered the keynote for Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference. His “thin, almost gaunt” appearance and unusually “listless” delivery,
together with his choice to delegate significant portions of his
keynote to other presenters, inspired a flurry of media and Internet
speculation about his health. In contrast, according to an Ars Technica journal report, Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) attendees who saw Jobs in person said he “looked fine”. Following the keynote, an Apple spokesperson said that “Steve’s health is robust.”
Two years later, similar concerns followed Jobs’s 2008 WWDC keynote address. Apple officials stated Jobs was victim to a “common bug” and was taking antibiotics, while others surmised his cachectic appearance was due to the Whipple procedure.
During a July conference call discussing Apple earnings, participants
responded to repeated questions about Jobs’s health by insisting that it
was a “private matter”. Others, however, voiced the opinion that
shareholders had a right to know more, given Jobs’s hands-on approach to
running his company. The New York Times
published an article based on an off-the-record phone conversation with
Jobs, noting that “While his health problems amounted to a good deal
more than ‘a common bug,’ they weren’t life-threatening and he doesn’t
have a recurrence of cancer.”
On August 28, 2008, Bloomberg mistakenly published a 2500-word obituary
of Jobs in its corporate news service, containing blank spaces for his
age and cause of death. (News carriers customarily stockpile up-to-date
obituaries to facilitate news delivery in the event of a well-known
figure’s untimely death.) Although the error was promptly rectified,
many news carriers and blogs reported on it, intensifying rumors concerning Jobs’s health. Jobs responded at Apple’s September 2008 Let’s Rock keynote by quoting Mark Twain: “Reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.” At a subsequent media event, Jobs concluded his presentation with a slide reading “110/70”, referring to his blood pressure, stating he would not address further questions about his health.
On December 16, 2008, Apple announced that marketing vice-president Phil Schiller would deliver the company’s final keynote address at the Macworld Conference and Expo 2009, again reviving questions about Jobs’s health. In a statement given on January 5, 2009, on Apple.com, Jobs said that he had been suffering from a “hormone imbalance” for several months.
On January 14, 2009, in an internal Apple memo, Jobs wrote that in the
previous week he had “learned that my health-related issues are more
complex than I originally thought” and announced a six-month leave of
absence until the end of June 2009, to allow him to better focus on his
health. Tim Cook, who previously acted as CEO in Jobs’s 2004 absence, became acting CEO of Apple, with Jobs still involved with “major strategic decisions.”
In April 2009, Jobs underwent a liver transplant at Methodist University Hospital Transplant Institute in Memphis, Tennessee. Jobs’s prognosis was “excellent”.
2011 medical leave and resignation
On January 17, 2011, a year and a half after Jobs returned from his
liver transplant, Apple announced that he had been granted a medical
leave of absence. Jobs announced his leave in a letter to employees,
stating his decision was made “so he could focus on his health”. As
during his 2009 medical leave, Apple announced that Tim Cook would run day-to-day operations and that Jobs would continue to be involved in major strategic decisions at the company. Despite the leave, he made appearances at the iPad 2 launch event (March 2), the WWDC keynote introducing iCloud (June 6), and before the Cupertino city council (June 7).
Jobs announced his resignation from his role as Apple’s CEO on August
24, 2011. In his resignation letter, Jobs wrote that he could “no
longer meet [his] duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO”.
We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today.
Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless
innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives. The world is
immeasurably better because of Steve.
His greatest love was for his wife, Laurene, and his family. Our hearts
go out to them and to all who were touched by his extraordinary gifts.”
Jobs is survived by Laurene, his wife of 20 years, their three children and by Lisa Brennan-Jobs, his daughter from a previous relationship. His family released a statement saying that he “died peacefully”.
Starting October 5, 2011, Apple’s corporate website greeted visitors
with a simple page showing Jobs’s name and lifespan next to his
grayscale portrait. Clicking on Jobs’s image led to an obituary that
read “Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has
lost an amazing human being. Those of us who have been fortunate enough
to know and work with Steve have lost a dear friend and an inspiring
mentor. Steve leaves behind a company that only he could have built, and
his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple.” An email address
was also posted for the public to share their memories, condolences, and
A large number of newspapers carried news of his death on the front
pages. Statements reacting to Jobs’s death were made by several notable
people, including U.S. President Barack Obama, Microsoft founder Bill Gates, and The Walt Disney Company‘s Bob Iger. Wired News collected reactions and posted them in tribute on their homepage. Other statements of condolences were issued by many of Jobs’ friends and colleagues, such as Steve Wozniak and George Lucas.
A small private funeral was held on October 7, 2011.
Honors and public recognition
After Apple’s founding, Jobs became a symbol of his company and industry. When Time named the computer as the 1982 “Machine of the Year”, the magazine published a long profile of Steve as “the most famous maestro of the micro”.
Jobs was awarded the National Medal of Technology by President Ronald Reagan in 1984, with Steve Wozniak (among the first people to ever receive the honor), and a Jefferson Award for Public Service in the category “Greatest Public Service by an Individual 35 Years or Under” (also known as the Samuel S. Beard Award) in 1987. On November 27, 2007, Jobs was named the most powerful person in business by Fortune Magazine. On December 5, 2007, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and First Lady Maria Shriver inducted Jobs into the California Hall of Fame, located at The California Museum for History, Women and the Arts.
In August 2009, Jobs was selected as the most admired entrepreneur among teenagers in a survey by Junior Achievement, having previously been named Entrepreneur of the Decade 20 years earlier in 1989, by Inc. magazine. On November 5, 2009, Jobs was named the CEO of the decade by Fortune Magazine.
In September 2011, Jobs was ranked No.17 on Forbes: The World’s Most Powerful People. In December 2010, the Financial Times named Jobs its person of the year for 2010, ending its essay by stating, “In his autobiography, John Sculley,
the former PepsiCo executive who once ran Apple, said this of the
ambitions of the man he had pushed out: ‘Apple was supposed to become a
wonderful consumer products company. This was a lunatic plan. High-tech
could not be designed and sold as a consumer product.’ How wrong can you
At the time of his resignation, and again after his death, he was widely described as a visionary, pioneer and genius—perhaps one of the foremost—in the field of business, innovation, and product design, and a man who had profoundly changed the face of the modern world, revolutionized at least six different industries, and who was an “exemplar for all chief executives”. His death was widely mournedand considered a loss to the world by commentators across the globe.
After his resignation as Apple’s CEO, Jobs was characterized as the Thomas Edison and Henry Ford of his time.
Portrayals and coverage in media
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Films and documentaries
Jobs was prominently featured in four productions about the history of the personal computing industry:
- Triumph of the Nerds—a 1996 three-part documentary for PBS, about the rise of the home computer/personal computer.
- Nerds 2.0.1—a 1998 three-part documentary for PBS, (and sequel to Triumph of the Nerds) which chronicles the development of the Internet.
- Pirates of Silicon Valley—a 1999 docudrama which chronicles the rise of Apple and Microsoft. He was portrayed by Noah Wyle.
- The Machine that Changed the World (1992)—Part 3 of this 5-part documentary, called The Paperback Computer, prominently featured Jobs and his role in the early days of Apple.