June 12th 2005 Stanford commencement speech
Not sure about anyone else, but the quote above does a lot for me, no matter how many times I've reread it.
AEneid, iv. 604.
What need have I to fear--so soon to die?
Let me work on, not watch and wait in dread:
What will it matter, when that I am dead
That they bore hate or love that near me lie?
'Tis but a lifetime, and the end is nigh
At best or worst. Let me lift up my head
And firmly, as with inner courage, tread
Mine own appointed way on mandates high.
Pain could but bring from all its evil store,
The close of pain: hate's venom could but kill;
Repulse, defeat, desertion, could no more,
Let me have lived my life, not cowered until
The unhindered and unchastened hour was here.
So soon--what is there now for me to fear?
-- Edward Rowland Sill
while the tech scene will miss him a lot, my thoughts go to his family who'll miss him most.
Right now, theres someone working on his own startup in their garage because he was inspired by Steve Jobs.
When I heard that commencement speech he gave, I just got the idea that he sincerely meant everything that he said. In a way that someone would when they were talking to you one on one. He had lived everything that he talked about.
And that speech is a big reason that I have made the leap into doing something on my own.
When I was a kid, my mother went back to college to finish the degree she'd abandoned when she got married. She decided to study computer science. This was my first exposure to boolean algebra, and made me want a computer. The Apple II was relatively new and visicalc was driving sales of it, and I wanted an Apple II so bad that I vowed that, if we couldn't afford one, by golly I was going to make one! I started learning electronics, I started learning circuit design, I followed a series of articles in Byte Magazine by Steve Ciarcia titled "build your own computer". I built my own computer. I laid out the PCB, and manufactured it, I stocked it, I designed a video card (using discrete chips, not one of the "video cards in a chip" choices that came out later.)
But pretty quickly, I realized that I needed to learn how to program it. I needed to learn assembly and to build an operating system, and so I put the computer hardware project on hold and started learning software.
When I went to college, I wanted to study EE (still in the hardware mode) but pretty soon ended up getting a job as a programmer for a small company. I liked the small company atmosphere, and that got me hooked on startups. So, I started my career (dropped out of college, like Steve) and worked for a bunch of startups so that I'd know what I needed to know before starting my own.
Along the way, I started dozens of small businesses. I read everything Guy Kawasaki published. I followed Apple news religiously, even in the days prior to the internet. I eventually was able to afford a Macintosh and have been using them for about 20 years now. I decided that design was important because I came to understand the Mac UI was designed. I read every crappy, money-grubbing, two-bit biography of Steve Jobs I could get my hands on.
I've never considered him to be a religious figure. I'm not a cultist. I don't worship him. In fact, as was recently revealed by Wozniak, Jobs was an admirer of Atlas Shrugged, as am I. Worship is the rejection of rationality, and rationality is what we both strived for.
As I work to build a brand new company now, having just filed the incorporation papers, I am conscious of the lessons Steve Jobs taught me.
They are not that you should make things pretty, or that marketing is more important than substance... quite the opposite.
Steve Jobs was a man of integrity. In this day and age, that is so very rare.
Apple is a company that has always done its best to do right by its customers, even when its customers didn't know what the right thing was. (Eg: nobody needed a GUI, a laser printer, built in networking, 72dpi, or 300+ dpi displays, the iPad, or a touch interface, or any of hundreds of other things that didn't exit on the market before Apple invented them.)
Steve Jobs has often been characterized as mean tempered, but I think that he is a kind person. All of the direct experiences I've had with him, he was vey kind. What other thing can it be than kindness that would drive someone to sacrifice nearly everything else in order to make a better experience for customers? The "missing" features on Apple products, especially in the 1.0 versions, are legion.
I think I'm feeling great pain right now, not because I'm an acolyte in the cult of mac, but because one of the few legitimate heroes of our age has died.
Steve Jobs was an unapologetic capitalist. He recognized that by making great products, he'd improve people's lives, and as a result, he'd improve his own.
He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2003. The prognosis is not good there, and so he knew he had limited time left. At that point he was a multi-millionaire if not already a billionaire.
How did he spend the last 8 years of his life? Enjoying himself? No. He drove himself and Apple to build the next generation of the personal computer. The iPad is as significant as the Apple II.
When he was a kid, Steve Jobs gave us the personal computer. When he was dying, he gave us the next generation of computing.
I can think of nothing more heroic, than the positive impact on billions of people that will have...
... and what more could someone who is starting a company aspire to?
Make no mistake: he loved every minute of it.
I've left two very well paying positions (one at a very reputable design company that designed some of the early Apple & NeXT products) in the past year because I did look in the mirror and realized they were not right for me.
You have to follow your passion, back it up with action, and everything else will fall into place.
But the more I think about this the more I think this is somehow the way things were meant to be. I mean, as much as we wish it wasn't true people do get diminished by age. The dashing young actor loses a little when you see him as a 60 year old. Your memory of him gets altered in the smallest of ways.
Steve Jobs is now enshrined in the world's collective memory as the magic man in a black shirt and jeans. He'll always be that now. I'd certainly trade his legend for a few more years of his life but at the same time the world needs legendary figures.
Would it have been better if Abraham Lincoln had been around for two terms? Yes. But would he have inspired generations of Americans if he'd gotten mired down in the politics of reconstruction and been forced to act like "just another politician"? I doubt it.
So it's horribly sad that Steve Jobs died but the fact that he was amazing to the very end is what will make him a legend going forward.
Even dashing young actors aren't diminished by age. If Sean Connery had died young he would have robbed us of some great roles. And if Paul Newman had died young he would have robbed us of some tasty salad dressing.
The dots will connect one day. Even if others don't believe you, because you will die one day anyway.
It's inspirational and great.
It's going to be missing someone who has the absolute credibility to say it.
Anyone can be a tyrant. If Steve Jobs was a dictator, it was because people thought he had the right to be.
Even though most of us never knew him, we all feel as if we did know him very well; his inventions, complete labours of love, have become so central to how we live our lives. The profound impact his creations have had on us cannot make us feel any other way.
I didn't go to college, and I remember having a shitty job back in the day, saving so hard to buy a PowerBook G4, but it was completely worth it because purchasing that machine literally changed my life. Without a computer that was an absolute joy to use, I would have never spent so many hours learning how to code and consequently now have the career opportunities that I do.
I feel eternally indebted to Steve, despite having never met the man myself. By creating the wonderful tools he did for us to work with, I feel he is significantly responsible for the career I have today.
To one of the few that can say ‘I changed the world’, thank you.
Rest in peace Steve
Thanks Steve, I certainly feel like you've done something for me even though I've never met you.
That's what Commodore 64 did for me (I grew up with it), and that might be the reason that I'm not the least impressed by any of Apple's products. Furthermore, Apple's conduct -- patent litigations, DRM, "simple" user interfaces -- it all goes against the spirit of opennes and sharing in the "old days" when people shared their code and hacks as printouts in computer magazines.
Steve Jobs may rest in peace, he did a lot. I got enormous respect for him when I learned that he basically saved Pixar, and that's what I will remember him for.
Apple, the company, could disappear tomorrow and I wouldn't miss it the slightest.
(I know I'll get downvoted by Apple fanboys, but so be it.)
I can't think of a better way to put this. I think it's fair to say that we benefitted from his life just as much if not more than he did.
The former doesn't care about who you are. The latter cares deeply, and expresses in by placing genuine faith in you. Everything being said by the people who worked with him indicates that they feel humbled and honored by the experience. It's hard to get upset with someone's approach when you know in your bones that it got you to the top of your game.
What people feel in response to that is love.
"He was dubbed a megalomaniac, but Steve Jobs often gambled on young, largely inexperienced talent to take Apple forward; Jony Ive and his team prove that such faith was spot on."
This shot was shown for about 5 seconds right at the beginning of the recording. Front row, center. Reserved. Empty.
He shall be missed.
I never met you, but you were an inspiration. Rest well, Steve.
Steve insisted on subordinating technology to human purposes and narratives. It might be his most important lesson.
-- Jobs (via secondary source )
Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary."
- Steve Jobs
Quotes like this get me thinking back to my fascination reading about Cognitive Dissonance in Psych 101.
>do you also consider it ethically acceptable to kill an individual once he has stopped procreating, since he's no longer relevant to the evolutionary game?
The evolutionary game is much more complicated than you imagine it to be. Humans have evolved to be social animals. Someone who is too old to procreate can still watch after young, pass knowledge on to them, etc., which increases their fitness. This is such a fundamental misunderstanding, you have no reason to be so confident in such matters.
Imagine what our minds could do if they had centuries to develop. Imagine what our culture could be like if we didn't have to start from scratch every 70 years. Imagine a society without loss and scarcity. I know it's not an idea that appeals to a lot of people, but it does appeal to me. And I do believe it's an inevitable next step. In the end, it doesn't matter what most people think of this idea. It's not a development that the majority of humanity has to sign off on - we'll just move along without you, no harm done.
I'm not sure I accept that, and I have yet to see an argument that demonstrates this convincingly. What substrate are you talking about? The physical world? We are a part of and a result of the physical world, not separate from it. The notion of moving beyond it is nonsensical. If you're talking about the biological substrate, then I agree, we may see technology evolve beyond us. But this is still the self-replication pattern that is being propagated, not humanity itself.
>Imagine what our culture could be like if we didn't have to start from scratch every 70 years.
We don't start from scratch, that is the greatest advantage of our minds which have created written and oral communication. It has been demonstrated that people grow more conservative as they get older and set in their ways. New ideas are the purview of the young. I can very well imagine our culture stagnating if individuals were able to live indefinitely.
>Imagine what our minds could do if they had centuries to develop.
If we're still talking about organic brains, I don't think we can imagine that. Our brains were not designed to receive more than 100 or so years of input. The yips in golfers arise from mental maps of the body "bleeding over" after too much training. The wiring of the brain may not be designed to handle so much input. I can easily see an analagous process happening in more purely cognitive situations. In short, we don't know what would happen, and it would be presumptuous to think that we do.
> Imagine a society without loss and scarcity.
What do you mean that doesn't appeal to people? It's a utopian fantasy, of course it sounds good. But to say that it's inevitable is wishful thinking. Ironically, it may be our individualistic culture that does what is good for the self, with no concern for the future good that prevents such a development. Our plunder of the world's resources and our destruction of the environment may very well leave the planet unsuitable for human life. This is the idea that I was addressing in my first post, that of course the species does and should take precedent over the individual.
That's shown me. I guess the death of myself, my loved ones, my friends, and all 7 billion humans alive today isn't so bad compared to the sheer horror of culture staying the same.
Where's your perspective?
In short, we don't know what would happen, and it would be presumptuous to think that we do.
But it would be ridiculous to reject the idea of it based on speculation that it might not be possible.
Our plunder of the world's resources and our destruction of the environment
Rubbish, rubbish, rubbish. This self-flagellating viewpoint isn't winning points from a kindly jury. We can't "destroy" the environment or "plunder" the world's resource. All the stuff we've dug up is still in the universe, there is still an environment, and largely it's still the same as it ever was.
There was vastly more severe environmental change happening outside the time of humans than there has been during it, and we don't talk about the time the crust cooled and set as "the great environmental destruction", do we? Or when oxygen levels dropped, or when the earth warmed and ice ages finished? Or when plants appeared and took over the earth?
They were all enormous changes, yet today it's "greenhouse gases and global warming, oh we're so sorry, we're really horrible, we deserve a punishment".
may very well leave the planet unsuitable for human life.
Then we should probably fix that, not prostrate ourselves and play who's the most cynical and holier-than-thou games.
This is the idea that I was addressing in my first post, that of course the species does and should take precedent over the individual.
Of course it does? I refute that. We, the living humans on this planet, take precedence over all future, potential, hypothetical humans by virtue of our existence and their non-existance. Of course we do, any other view is ridiculous. Can you imagine "women and children first" changing to "imaginary hypothetical people first, women and children second"? No.
Unless you think we're perfectly adapted to all future circumstances, different selective pressures will require change, as they have for the past 4 billion or so years on this planet. Plus, good luck getting people to stop fucking. We have a finite amount of resources available. Regardless of the philosophical implications, it's not even practical to try to keep people alive forever. You ask where my perspective is, yet you brush concerns like this under the rug because you can't bear the thought of you personally having to go through the experience of losing loved ones, as organisms have been doing for eons.
> But it would be ridiculous to reject the idea of it based on speculation that it might not be possible.
Yes, I overreached there. I meant only to reject the idea that it will necessarily lead to positive outcomes.
> All the stuff we've dug up is still in the universe, there is still an environment, and largely it's still the same as it ever was.
And a lot of it we've put through physical and chemical changes which are non-reversible. And an environment is different than one that can sustain us comfortably. I didn't think I was going to have to defend simple facts about resource consumption.
> There was vastly more severe environmental change happening outside the time of humans than there has been during it, and we don't talk about the time the crust cooled and set as "the great environmental destruction", do we? Or when oxygen levels dropped, or when the earth warmed and ice ages finished?
We probably would if we were around for it. Species were wiped out. As the environment changes now, selective pressures will change again, and anything maladapted to them will die out. If indeed we are changing the environment and extracting resources at an unsustainable rate, we may die out or be radically changed, and by definition, something more able to keep their consumption under control will flourish. I believe that we have reached an evolutionary point where a much quicker memetic evolution will allow humans to adapt, but the resistance to this collective way of thinking will need to be overcome.
> Then we should probably fix that, not prostrate ourselves and play who's the most cynical and holier-than-thou games.
What game do you think I am playing here? I'm making an earnest argument that maybe the life cost of trying to build the biggest SUVs is too high, and will disadvantage our species in the long run.
> We, the living humans on this planet, take precedence over all future, potential, hypothetical humans by virtue of our existence and their non-existance.
And by definition, this is egocentric, which was the original point. Unless you deny that people will be born in the future, calling them imaginary is intellectually dishonest. Pretending that they will never exist achieves nothing except to deflect your anxiety about taking actions which will make the lives of your descendents more difficult.
[Edit for more substance: you imply evolution is driving humanity towards some 'good' destination, such that more evolution is better. This isn't how evolution works.]
No. All I'm implying is that humanity, in its current form, cannot survive all possible natural threats to its existence. We're still competing with other species, and we're still vulnerable to things like the effects of climate change, so if we completely stop evolving, it's likely that in only a few thousand years, we'll be completely dependent on our technology for survival.
I would be very surprised and disappointed if our technological processes in a mere hundred years are not more robust and better than evolutionary equivalents--indeed we can already do many things evolution could never do itself, the last big step is doing that more on the micro scale. Work on that has already begun, it's pretty exciting to look at it. E. glowli is just the very beginning.
Again, that's not how it works - dinosaurs didn't evolve to be meteor resistant, and carrying on evolving could as well lead to our extinction as to our saving, or indeed to our losing intelligence and becoming a niche species again.
And that's aside from the fact that even with technological immortality, we'd still have people dieing and being created, and evolution will still be happening - it can't not-happen.
Once a species has the intelligence and technology to eliminate death, they'll be able to evolve and adapt themselves far more effectively than evolution via natural selection.
What's funny is memories are also re-created and retouched when we recall them. The whole thing is very complex and when people say they 'know for sure' something about life/death it irritates the hell out of me.
Individual death isn't bad or good. Death just is. It's more fluid and complex than bad or good. Not to mention "dead/alive" itself are fluid concepts. People choose to interpret death as good or bad because people are idiots.
If death was ultimately bad people wouldn't commit suicide all the time. If death was ultimately good people wouldn't apply so much effort to keep alive. People choose to think suicidals are by definition mentally ill also because people are idiots. If you're in a burning building, you most likely will jump out of the building committing suicide because the alternative (being burned alive) is much worse. Similar thing with a lot of suicides.
My point is: people are naive idiots and we still have no idea what exactly happens after death, and what exactly is 'after' or before. The idiocy of people when it comes to the subject of death figuratively speaking makes me want to kill myself.
The comforting thing is, within a context of individual consciousness you're pretty much fucking immortal. Whatever happens outside of the context of functioning consciousness should really be none of your concern. It is impossible to "feel dead". "When I'm alive death isn't here, when I'm dead I won't be there to witness it".
That doesn't explain self-sacrifice. And, honestly, I wouldn't want to live an "eternal" life when everybody I love and know around me would be dead at some point or another. Maybe this is also why I've come to see Christianity's "promise" of eternal life as ridiculous and almost scary at times.
As Seneca used to say, it doesn't matter how long you live, it's what you do with your life that matters (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/De_Brevitate_Vitae_%28Seneca%29)
The philosopher brings up many Stoic principles on the nature of time, namely that men waste much of it in meaningless pursuits. According to the essay, nature gives man enough time to do what is really important and the individual must allot it properly.
And to finish in an even more pathetic tone, I don't think we should strive for living an eternal life, but rather do what Julius Caesar did when he realized that Alexander had already conquered the world by 30: weep, and then try to conquer the world by ourselves.
The reason to want to live longer? One word: space.
Living hundreds of years in good health will allow us all to become a space faring race. It will allow us to take the long view on interstellar travel, our species and relationships. I'm hoping to see that day and having Steve leave so early only solidifies the importance of longevity in my mind. Intelligence is not meant to die, it's meant to live. We accept death only because we have to and have been powerless to stop it. Technology is starting to change all that.
This makes me just more sad. Or maybe I am just at a bad place in life.
I did just that, modifying the game to the point it was no longer playable. I had saved the file and effectively broke it. I shut off the computer, and never told my uncle.
The excitement of that moment stuck with me and was the enabler of the amazing life I've had since.
Thank you Steve Jobs. RIP.
My heart goes out to his family and friends. Steve was a childhood hero of mine as far back as I can remember. The world was a much better place with him in it.
I really shouldn't admit this but /cough circa 1997 I had abandoned Apple. I had a PC and Linux box at home and Unix terminal at school. I remember being impressed by this campaign and hopeful that Jobs would fix Apple. But I couldn't have imagined what Apple and Steve Jobs had in store for the world. What a remarkable recovery. Thanks Steve.
- Inscription on Steve Jobs' star at the Entrepreneur Walk of Fame in Cambridge, Mass., unveiled on 9/16/2011: http://instagr.am/p/NPa4o/
Honestly, how many people care about how much is in their bank account after they die? Probably not very many.
Plenty chase riches while they're alive, however. And good old Steve was no exception.
Don't even get me started.
Jobs hadn't run out of ideas though.
I'll add that what's even better then giving away your money is not taking too much in the first place.
Steve Jobs was a multi-billionaire but, as Apple's stock laps the field, it bears noting that Steve's billions are a fraction of what others in similar positions are worth.
Steve Jobs is 110. It's really quite reasonable if you put it into context.
Thankfully Steve himself had far superior cognitive capacity.
Maybe Bill Gates ran out of ideas how to help using computers, though.
I think Paul Graham's post earlier today had something for us to remember as we work through this great, deep loss:
"I flew into the Bay Area a few days ago. I notice this every time I fly over the Valley: somehow you can sense something is going on. Obviously you can sense prosperity in how well kept a place looks. But there are different kinds of prosperity. Silicon Valley doesn't look like Boston, or New York, or LA, or DC. I tried asking myself what word I'd use to describe the feeling the Valley radiated, and the word that came to mind was optimism."
Here's to Steve, and his relentless optimism. Here's to the next big idea and the next person who changes the world like he did.
On our lives. How many people on HN own iPhones and MacBooks?
There's no more fitting tribute to the man than to throw some Beatles up on iTunes and create something wonderful.
Gentlemen, let's make a dent in the universe.
His vision will be missed. He left an indelible mark on a generation of technology users, and then did it again.
"You know, I've got a plan that could rescue Apple. I can't say any more than that it's the perfect product and the perfect strategy for Apple. But nobody there will listen to me."
-- Steve Jobs, Sept. 18, 1995
"If I were running Apple, I would milk the Macintosh for all it's worth -- and get busy on the next great thing. The PC wars are over. Done. Microsoft won a long time ago."
-- Steve Jobs, Feb. 19, 1996
The best ideas are the ones you have to force on people.
A more 'perfect' PR stunt, the official autobiographer of Steve Jobs couldn't ask for...before you start downvoting me for a seemingly insensitive comment, I don't mean that is perfect that he died. Absolutely not.
I am dealing with the loss just like any other tech-loving fan-boi.
Just pointing out that it the PR storm generated around this book as a result of his passing, will be nothing like he could have ever paid for....i.e. it is 'perfect' (from a selling the books perspective).
Talk about consistently having the right timing in almost everything he does.
Also, it was most likely moved up to sell more during the holiday quarter.
From what little information has been released about the book, Steve was just about as hands-off as you can be (no request to read it before publishing, no demands about off-limits topics, etc.).
The author also responded to speculation that the publication date had been moved up because of a rumored decline in Jobs' health. "It's actually not related to any decline," he said. "I turned most of the book in this past June. It's now all done and edited. The March 2012 date (or whatever date it was) was never a deeply-considered pubdate. Like the original cover design, it came about because the publisher wanted to put something in the database last spring."
That link was NOT an affiliate link.
How about checking before slandering?
Two questions - what DO affiliate links look like, or how can I tell? Also, can I delete that comment or edit it?
Not that we need proof that this book is going to sell like crazy, but the current Amazon rankings for it are:
Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2 in Books
#1 in Books > Business & Investing > Industries & Professions > High-Tech
#1 in Books > Business & Investing > Biography & History
#1 in Books > Computers & Internet > Business & Culture > Biographies
21,300% in the last 24 hours. As predicted :)
If you care to learn more about the disease and the search for a cure, check out "The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer" by Siddhartha Mukherjee. Fascinating, scary and sobering.
I understand that people die in other ways too, of course, but I think cancer is a common agent that is just how dying works. It's like getting gray hairs -- you can do things to try and stop or cover it up (and some people will get old without much graying), people can fantasize about a fountain of youth that will keep your body at age 21 forever, but the reality is that graying is just part of aging and nothing is going to change that despite any realistic effort that humans can put in. Cancer is part of dying for many, many people. It's not going to go away despite our best efforts to mitigate its effects or eradicate it entirely.
I once read the supposed confession of a medical research assistant that "cancer" as a general thing is not curable but they keep the myth alive because "cure cancer" makes a really decent slogan.
I've become convinced that cancer is among the elite series of diseases that are,
in many cases, just how people die, meaning that perhaps in many instances the medical
term for "dying" is "cancer".
There is a variety of reasons those bugs can come up: for example, the codebase could have a pre-existing weakness that gets triggered in certain conditions. Sometimes, the code was copied incorrectly from one cell to its successor. Sometimes an external influence corrupts the local copy of the code.
When cellular code develops a bug, there are a number of things that can happen: sometimes, the cell just becomes bad or inefficient at what it does. Sometimes it shuts down. Sometimes, nothing happens. And other times the bug introduces an infinite loop in the cell's replication subroutines - that's cancer.
You see, cancer is neither a medical catchall term nor is it an inevitability of life. In fact, our immune system regularly attacks crashed cells, including cancer cells. If it didn't we'd all be having cancer at a very early age. However, sometimes due to the nature of the bug, the immune system is incapable of recognizing that a cell has crashed. That's when cancer breaks out, because those cells replicate and the immune system doesn't stop them. This is also precisely the point where the most promising treatment options are. We are just now figuring out how to teach the immune system to recognize those crashed cells and once we advance this research enough, we'll have the capability to simply correct these flaws in our systems and get rid of the bug completely.
I once read the supposed confession of a medical research assistant that "cancer"
as a general thing is not curable but they keep the myth alive because "cure cancer"
makes a really decent slogan.
EDIT: After re-reading my post, I realize that it could be perceived as condescending - but I assure you, it's not supposed to be. It's just intended as a short programmer-friendly introduction into the nature of cancer.
Cancer also becomes naturally more likely as time goes on and DNA has become more damaged so as our lifespans increase, so do the odds of getting cancer.
1. Young people get cancer, when they are otherwise healthy.
2. Cancer is subject to epidemiological trends suggesting that there are definite causes related to lifestyle or the environment.
3. You can reduce your risk of cancer/dying of cancer by not smoking, exercise, maintaining a normal body weight, and participating in screening programs. There are no guarantees of course.
4. Some cancers are curable eg testicular cancer can be cured even if widespread, with chemotherapy. Also Hodgkin's lymphoma and of course early stage cancer of the breast and bowel.
Incidentally, Steve Jobs had a pancreatic neuroendocrine tumour, which is distinct from the normal run of the mill pancreatic cancer that has a poorer prognosis.
Aging will probably get solved relatively soon, as will cancer, we just need the technology.
Steve Jobs was the person who inspired me to join the tech industry. I first really knew who Steve Jobs was after watching the (not so bad) made-for-tv movie "Pirates of Silicon Valley." I always knew I wanted to work with technology but after seeing that movie I knew I wanted to be part of the Silicon Valley culture that Steve helped create. Steve has inspired me for years and I am extremely sad about this loss. We will all miss him dearly.
RIP Steve Jobs
Perhaps his biggest ding was inspiring so many of us to pursue our own dings.
I'm left with a feeling of ambivalence. I feel bad that he couldn't enjoy the fruits of his labor by retiring and spending time with his family or whatever other interests he had. At the same time, I know that he wouldn't have had it any other way.
He recognized his gift and shared it with all of us. The experiences when using his products and the emotions when hearing him speak. I feel blessed just to have been a witness to such a human's life.
A part of me can't help to think that Apple is now just a "normal" company. But I hope his charisma and vision will stick and be strong enough to live on for many more decades in Cupertino.
That said, Steve was a great force in the world of technology, and whether you liked their products or not, you have to appreciate Apple's effect on competition in the marketplace...they simply continue to push the envelope, and technology wouldn't be what it is today with Steve and his creations. RIP.
Despite all this, sitting in my living room, I am totally devastated by these news! This is true greatness.
The site slowed to a crawl, pg kept things afloat by dialing back the number of stories on the front page, the black bar came out, and here we all are.
For the past 10 years I've made a living developing on all kinds of Macs. Couldn't imagine work without them.
Best of all, I loved watching Steve's keynotes. No one can distort reality the way he did.
I didn't even know him, but I feel like I'll miss knowing he's there, ready to present:
"one more thing.."
On any given afternoon around 1981-1982, the geeks at my middle school could all be found gathered around a dozen Apple II+ and Apple IIe machines in the computer room. The British instructor who had set them up and taught us code fundamentals really encouraged us to explore and experiment (and fought a losing battle to keep us from bringing our game floppies into the room).
I thank him for that as well.
For purely selfish reasons -- what could Steve have imagined next? -- he passed far too soon.
Here’s a short tale of mine when I worked at Apple:
One sunny autumn day, Steve (he was always Steve) was walking across Apple’s campus with a reporter toward Caffe Macs. I was walking a few feet behind, enough to hear the reporter asking about Steve’s family. As we approached the entrance, Steve stopped and opened the door for an employee carrying trays of food outside. The employee never looked up but said "Thanks." "Sure," Steve replied. Just then, at least two dozen people followed the employee out. Because of where the reporter was standing, none of the employees (as far as I could tell) noticed who was holding the door for them. Steve continued holding that door, talking to the reporter, until I came up and offered to take his place as doorman. "Thanks," he said. "Sure," I replied. He smiled and invited the reporter inside.
Whatever else you may read about Steve, whatever else happens in his life or to Apple or to the world of computing, know that he opened doors for people.
R.I.P. Steve. We're all better off thanks to your time on the planet.
(credit to kawika, link below)
He will be sorely missed.
And one who was fired, watched his company driven right to the precipice, and brought it back.
The arc of a hero.
August 6, 1997. Greatness doesn't happen at the top but at the bottom:
(But I like Apple more. ;) )
What he managed to do, though, is genuinely incredible, and he has much to be proud of. He made the world more beautiful.
As someone who is starting and striving to build beautiful software and become an entrepreneur, Jobs is an inspiration.
He has done more than few could hope to achieve.
I feel saying anything else will just sound corny, which is not what he deserves.
So RIP Steve.
Here's to you Steve, thank you for the inspiration over my lifetime.
RIP SJ. You certainly changed the world.
Best wishes to his family.
Thank you Steve for being an inspiration in our lives and making the world a better place. You will be missed forever. Rest in peace.
My condoloences to your family.
RIP Steve, you inspired us and we loved you for it.
Congratulations to all of those who had that opportunity. The rest of us will have to make do with a mere shadow of his personality.
But what a remarkable shadow it is.
RIP Steve. Thank you for everything you've done to bring your magic to the world. Thank you also for things you haven't done, but easily could have.
No matter how you slice it, the man loved what he did, and he did it brilliantly. The amount of people who use a device designed under his watch every single day of their lives is utterly astounding, through his work, he connected with hundreds of millions of people, and changed the game of consumer electronics numerous times.
I hope I can have a even a small sliver of his passion, commitment, and vision in my own life.
Of course he did. I think he held onto this thing until the very last second. I wouldn't be surprised if the actual resignation wasn't a long-ago prepared statement sitting in his lawyer's drawer for years. End-stage liver disease also means a rapid mental decline, so I'm assuming they triggered the resignation as soon as he was irreversibly incapacitated.
I have seen a few patients with end-stage liver disease during their last days and I have to say they don't recognize their surroundings nor are they capable of reflecting on their own state. And this is a good thing probably. At times like these, it helps me to remember that lives are not defined by their endings, they are defined by how they have been lived.
As an inventor, he's the main name (though with significant help and industrial design by others) behind the iMac, iPod, iPad, iPhone - all dominant leaders in their respective sectors.
It's curious that you'd put Larry Ellison's achievements above all of that.
I'd be willing to bet that the Amazon guy might end up on this list if current trends continue, as continued Amazon success might have the hollowing-out impact of Wal-Mart. And you missed the point I was trying to make. Jobs is different because he actually saw the product as more than a dollar sign. His "score" was lower because of this, but we're all applauding his decision tonight.
And I don't count the computer or consumer electronics field as the best source of inventors. The latter, in many ways, is noise. The true inventions of the former occurred outside our date window (transistor, IC, microprocessor, ...) To me, inventions like PCR, medical/biology/chemistry/computer syntheses or vaccines are better, more significant inventions.
Hell, Sony broke the ground with the Walkman. Roddenberry thought up the iPad in a way. But, again, Jobs had taste and he made sure (a) we knew that and (b) his products were intended to be more than revenue streams.
As a postscript, I suspect there's far, far more businesses sitting on piles of Oracle software than they'd like (but they're stuck and getting nailed for it).
"Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be
truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work, and the only way to
do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep
looking, and don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when
you find it, and like any great relationship it just gets better and better as
the years roll on. So keep looking. Don't settle."
June 12th 2005 Stanford commencement speech
And that's what I ended up trying to do.. Thank you Steve and rest in peace.
I'll do my best to stay hungry, stay foolish.
On a personal note, if it weren't for Steve Jobs' relentless determination to revolutionize the mobile industry, I wouldn't have had the opportunity to make a living writing games for a platform I love. Thank you and RIP Steve.
I'm grateful that Steve invested in Pixar. Those animations are inspiring.
So for me it's iPhone + Pixar. The rest, with respect, is just normal computer business - iMacs and so on. That is, build them cheap in China, sell them expensive in fancy stores with marble floors and huge glass windows. Not a lot going on there except manufacturing and clever business, and half-decent product design including the OS if you're a fan of that style of computer.
But for sure, it's sad he died young and he was obviously a hero to many. I liked his speech to the uni students, he seemed to have a calm outlook and interest in life and death and everything in between.
You have done a great deal for humanity, and for that we are very grateful for your time on earth. You represented the best of human intellect and human drive for perfection. We are inherently imperfect as humans, but you have proven, with fantastic flair and awe, that humans can attain perfection. Perfection is no longer a concept, it is embodied in the iPad, the iPhone, the MAC OSX, the iPod, the MAC Book Pro, and all the ingenious, useful, monumental products you have introduced to our world.
We stand proud as humans because of you and the few other men and women who have stood strong and lead with courage and change our world for the better. For Ever!
My condolences to your family, your fans, your friends, and your colleagues.
The most important lesson from Steve Jobs
Don't be afraid to be wrong.
It is sad that the first time I write about Steve Jobs is when he's passed away.
I've never owned an Apple product. So, my love and respect for Steve is entirely based on the way he lived his life.
I've always believed that one must do exactly what one loves. Life's too short to waste doing other stuff. What for, anyway? Money? Power? They pale in comparison to the electric feeling of creating something new, something you dreamed up.
Let people tell you you're crazy. You will probably fail. That's ok.
Steve failed a lot. But, what kept him going?
He wasn't afraid to be wrong.
Don't be afraid to be wrong. Make that dent.
However, I would feel more emotionally impacted if Jobs was less egocentric. His world was just that: His world. If something did not meet his vision, he was ready to talk down to it. Even if he was right, his attitude and politics made it difficult for me to really warm up to him.
All I can say is that I wish his family and friends a good life after their tragedy. Regardless of what I think, they knew a man they will never forget.
My life (childhood, education, and career) have been touched in tremendously powerful way by this man and his passion.
And that's how I got inspired to get into computer science, learn programming, to build games like that or do cool stuff with computers.
"Maybe they had an inkling that he'd actually work on Breakout with Wozniak, who they already knew from his low chip PONG. As Allan later said "Jobs never did a lick of engineering in his life. He had me snowed. It took years before I figured out that he was getting Woz to 'come in the back door' and do all the work while he got the credit."
"The original deadline was met after Wozniak did not sleep for four days straight. In the end 50 chips were removed from Jobs' original design. This equated to a US$5,000 bonus, which Jobs kept secret from Wozniak, instead only paying him $375."
I hope Woz gets a similar level of recognition and mourning when he passes (decades into the future, hopefully)
"do not go gentle into that good night,
rage, rage against the dying of the light. "
Steve Jobs seemed to have been possessed by the second type of muse, but one that never let go but just kept driving him. Even if some of use used few Apple products, Steve had a vision and always kept demonstrating that more was possible, that things could be better than they had been.
He'll be missed.
Ultimately, this adds a sense of urgency to my own efforts to start a company and help bring a piece of the future to fruition, as I can no longer count on Steve to get us there.
Thank you Steve, for your vision, good taste, boundless drive and the inspiration you have given me and countless others. You will be sorely missed. :.(
The world has lost a unique and brilliant technology-business-design leader, the likes of which are few and far between.
Thank you Steve, RIP
When I read the news, it really felt like he was hanging on until he knew his company was in good hands and he could pass on. Just an incredible human being in every aspect. He will be sorely missed.
Thank you for your vision, creativity and inspiration.
also, the Apple homepage really is beautiful in its simplicity. I hope they leave it like this for awhile.
It is easy to love role models but damn difficult to follow them, Today I promise myself that I'll try to follow lessons taught by Steve Jobs. Thank you Sir for giving human side to technology.
This affected me far more than I could have expected. Even though I never once met Steve in person, I'm profoundly affected in so many ways by his clarity of vision, drive, steadfast beliefs, and in the end, the way he dealt with his mortality.
A sad, sad day.
RIP Steve Jobs, thanks for everything. You have been an inspiration to my entrepreneurial career.