Biography Remembers Life and Impact of Steve Jobs

Apple’s revolutionary products, which include the iPod, iPhone and iPad, are dictating the evolution of modern technology. When talking about these products and their impact on our lives, one thing will surely come to mind:  Steve Jobs, Apple’s creator and founder.

Jobs experimented with a few different pursuits before starting Apple Computers with Stephen Wozniak in the Jobs’ family garage, starting the beginning of a story that’s lasted several decades and has made a lasting impression on nearly every person on the planet, whether they own an Apple product or not.  With the recent death of Jobs, his biography was published months earlier than planned, bringing to light the details of a life not soon forgotten.  The book, written by Walter Isaacson, hits stores today.

Steven Paul Jobs was born on February 24, 1955, to Joanne Simpson and Abdulfattah “John” Jandali, two University of Wisconsin graduate students who gave their unnamed son up for adoption. His father was a Syrian political science professor and his mother, Joanne Simpson, worked as a speech therapist. Shortly after Steve was placed for adoption, his biological parents married and had another child, Mona Simpson. It was not until Jobs was 27 that he was able to uncover information on his biological parents.

And so the story begins, as Isaacson notes the uncertain onset of a man who would go on to change the world as we know it.  The biography has turned out to be a commemoration of Jobs, who has always been an intelligent and innovative thinker; his youth was riddled with frustrations over formal schooling. In elementary school he was a prankster whose fourth grade teacher needed to bribe him to study. After he did enroll in high school, Jobs spent his free time at Hewlett-Packard. It was there that he befriended computer club guru Steve Wozniak. Wozniak was a brilliant computer engineer, and the two developed great respect for one another.

Some of Jobs’ early involvements, long before the Apple II was created, include working as a video game designer with Atari. Several months later Jobs left Atari to find spiritual enlightenment in India, traveling the continent and experimenting with psychedelic drugs. It was 1976 when Jobs and Wozniak started Apple computers. The two started in the Jobs family garage, and funded their entrepreneurial venture after Jobs sold his Volkswagen bus and Wozniak sold his beloved scientific calculator.

Jobs and Wozniak are credited with revolutionizing the computer industry by democratizing the technology and making the machines smaller, cheaper, intuitive, and accessible to everyday consumers. The two conceived a series of user-friendly personal computers that they initially marketed for $666.66 each. Their first model, the Apple I, earned them $774,000. Three years after the release of their second model, the Apple II, sales increased 700 percent to $139 million dollars. In 1980, Apple Computer became a publically traded company with a market value of $1.2 billion on the very first day of trading. Jobs looked to marketing expert John Scully of Pepsi-Cola to help fill the role of Apple’s President.

In 2003, Jobs discovered he had a neuroendocrine tumor, a rare but operable form of pancreatic cancer. Instead of immediately opting for surgery, Jobs chose to alter his pescovegetarian diet while weighing Eastern treatment options. For nine months Jobs postponed surgery, making Apple’s board of directors nervous.  Executives feared that shareholders would pull their stocks if word got out that their CEO was ill. But in the end, Job’s confidentiality took precedence over shareholder disclosure. In 2004, he had a successful surgery to remove the pancreatic tumor. True to form, in subsequent years Jobs disclosed little about his health.

Apple introduced such revolutionary products as the Macbook Air, iPod, and iPhone, all of which have dictated the evolution of modern technology. Almost immediately after Apple releases a new product, competitors scramble to produce comparable technologies. In 2007, Apple’s quarterly reports were the company’s most impressive statistics to date. Stocks were worth a record-breaking $199.99 a share, and the company boasted a staggering $1.58 billion dollar profit, an $18 billion dollar surplus in the bank, and zero debt.

On October 5, 2011, Apple announced that co-founder Steve Jobs had died. He was 56 years old at the time of his death.

The tech world mourns of his loss and Apple fanatics paid tribute to their tech master. His innovations have influenced the world and the entire way we live.  Here’s a great series of amazing artwork tributes to the one and only Steve Jobs.

About Maria Pila

Maria Pila is a Staff Writer For SiliconANGLE.