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Steve Jobs -Technology in Your Pocket

October 6, 2011

I love this article about Steve Jobs that was just posted on CBSnews.com. It gives a great recap of the history of Jobs and how “He moved technology from garages to pockets, took entertainment from discs to bytes and turned gadgets into extensions of the people who use them.”

He changed the digital future and told us what we needed before we even wanted it. Job, a college drop out, went to work for Atari in 1974 and attended club meetings with a group of computer hobbyists including Steve Wozniak, a friend from high school.

Wozniak’s made a homemade computer and Jobs saw its potential. In 1976 Jobs and Wozinak started Apple Computer Inc. in Jobs’ parents’ garage.  Jobs chose the name after visiting an apple orchard. Their first computer was the Apple I which was basically the guts of a computer without a keyboard or monitor. In 1977 the Apple II was made for the masses and earned Jobs 100 million by the time he was 25 years old.

In 1979 Jobs visited the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center where he saw a computer that allowed people to control computers with a click of a mouse. When he returned to Apple he had his team of engineers make what he saw. Jobs’ was able to take other people’s ideas and improve them for the masses. Just like the computer, digital music players and smartphones. He reinvented them into successful easy to use products.

In response to his Xerox visit in 1983 Apple engineers responded with two computers. One named after Jobs’ daughter Lisa. But a less expensive version named after an employee’s favorite apple, the Macintosh, came out the following year with success.

In 1985 after disagreements Jobs resigned as chairman of the board and left Apple. Jobs got into two other companies. One a computer maker and the other Pixar which he bought from George Lucas for 10 million dollars. Pixar become wildly successful after the release of “Toy Story,” “A Bug’s Life” and “Toy Story 2.” He sold Pixar to Disney for 7.4 billion dollars and 138 million shares of Disney stock.

In 1997 Jobs stepped in as interim chief at Apple as they were suffering from continuous losses. He started getting rid of unprofitable projects, made the company’s focus to set the Mac apart from Windows, starting with a marketing campaign to encourage computer users to “Think different.”

Jobs first product with his new direction was the brightly colored, plastic iMac in 1998. The iMac sold about 2 million in its first year and Apple returned to profitability that year.

In the 2000s Apple came out with The iPod, smaller and with more capacity each generation. Then in 2003 iTunes music allowed users to legally buy music online song by song.  In 2007 Jobs ruled gadget lovers with the launch of the iPhone. Three years later the iPad made its debut and people camped in line to get their hands on one.

In 2004 Jobs revealed that he had been diagnosed with a rare form of pancreatic cancer. He had a few medical leaves between then and August 2011 when he resigned as CEO. Jobs said “I 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. Unfortunately, that day has come.”

If you would like to read the whole article you can check it out here it’s a great read and inspiration to hear him talk about what was most important in his life – “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,” he said. “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.”

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