Apple co-founder Steve Jobs dead at 56

David Friedman ('15)/Eastside Staff

Apple Inc., the world’s second most valuable company, worth over 300 billion dollars, lost its co-founder, Steve Jobs, on October 5, 2011 at age 56. Jobs, who resigned as Chief Executive Officer of Apple on August 24, died of respiratory arrest resulting from pancreatic cancer that had spread to other organs.

“Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives,” read a statement by Apple’s board of directors, “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.”

After dropping out from college in 1976, Steve Jobs built the first Apple computer in his own garage and co-founded the company with his two friends. After about ten years, he had a fall out with fellow Executive Officer, John Sculley. When their “visions of the future” began to diverge, the board sided with Sculley, who then proceeded to fire Jobs. Steve Jobs then created the computer program company NeXT, for higher education and business markets. In 1997, Steve Jobs returned as to Apple as the CEO, and he went on to become the face of the company. He developed products such as the iPod and iTunes, in 2001, which changed the way people store and listen to music. He continued this success with creating the macbook in 2006, and the iPhone in 2007, one of his most successful products. Shortly after, he developed the long awaited iPad in 2010.

“Michelle and I are saddened to learn of the passing of Steve Jobs,” President Obama said in a written statement. “Steve was among the greatest of American innovators – brave enough to think differently, bold enough to believe he could change the world, and talented enough to do it.”

Tim Cook, who took over Apple multiple times when Steve Jobs was on leave because of his health, is Jobs’ successor as CEO of Apple Inc. However, some believe that without Jobs, Apple will not be as successful in the future.

“Apple is Steve Jobs, Steve Jobs is Apple, and Steve Jobs is innovation,” said Trip Chowdhry, analyst at Global Equities Research. “You can teach people how to be operationally efficient, you can hire consultants to tell you how to do that, but God creates innovation. … Apple without Steve Jobs is nothing.”

Jobs created a company that changed the world of technology forever. Apple has lost a visionary genius, he will be missed by many.