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What do you know about Steve Jobs?

This is a discussion on What do you know about Steve Jobs? within the iPad General Discussions forums, part of the Apple iPad Discussions category; I have to admit I don't know much. I use to live in Palo Alto where he lives and I know that my friend use ...

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Thread: What do you know about Steve Jobs?

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    What do you know about Steve Jobs?

    I have to admit I don't know much. I use to live in Palo Alto where he lives and I know that my friend use to see him and his lovely wife walking around the neighborhood and their kids went to the same school and he actually says hi to everyone! On one of his walks around the neighborhood, he actually said hi to my friend and called her by name ~ she about died! She did not know he even knew her name. She said they looked so happy doing their walks and like a very regular couple.

    Then one day she saw them walking and you could just tell. It all had changed. They looked different. They were different. Everything was different. You just knew. Steve didn't look well.

    That is all I know. And that he makes wonderful gadgets.


    Today I heard on the news that he invented the mouse? Did I hear that right? And also ~ his annual salary at Apple was $1.00? That is all he would take. True?
    Last edited by SweetPoison; 10-06-2011 at 09:02 AM.
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    I don't think he invented the mouse. If I recall correctly, this was invented at Xerox PARC (Palo Alto Research Centre). But Xerox saw little use for it and Steve - ever the visionary - saw its potential and 'adopted' it.

    We should remember, too, that Steve had failures - how many of us (probably not many) remember the NeXT workstation that he worked on after he was 'forced out' of Apple.

    One story I remember well was when Apple were moving from the first generation Motorola MC68000 microprocessors, that they used on the first generation Macintoshs, to the PowerPC RISC (Reduced Instruction Set Computer) processor. Steve had insisted that the software developed for the first generation Macs using the 68000 should run on the PowerPC too, even though it was an entirely different architecture. He mandated that the PowerPC needed a 68000 'emulator' that would be able to run that first generation software, as well as software developed specifically for the PowerPC. He set two groups of engineers to work on the project telling them that he would choose the best design.

    It came to the day when both groups had to demonstrate their work to Steve. They both proudly showed their designs running some of the early Mac software. Steve watched with interest and then, in his usual manner, said 'Just one more thing'. And from his pocket he pulled two floppy discs that contained the original - absolutely the very first - version of the Macintosh operating system. He pushed a disc into each of the computers that the design teams had been working on.

    Only one booted up successfully - that design was chosen.

    Tim
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    What a great story, Tim! It seems that I am always interested in things or people after they die. How messed up is that?

    What I remember of a this Apple Store I use to pass years ago was this computer, or it could have been a monitor. But it was hella cool, Tim. I think it had a long snake type thing with a really cool monitor at the end. Or computer at the end. Different colors too!

    Or not.
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    Apple Stock is higher today, I just heard. So when someone dies, it is best to by stock that pertains to them?
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    True. Mr. Jobs didn't invent the mouse. Unlike the folks at Xerox, though, he saw its potential. He later claimed he realized in "10 minutes" that the GUI and mouse were the the future of computing. And like most "visionaries," not all his "visions" were successful. Like a great home run hitter, his average was not bad, but what really mattered was how often he knocked it out of the park. (Sorry for the baseball reference, Tim.) And you're right about the NeXT workstation. Though the OS was later the basis for Apple's resurgent line of computers when Steve returned.

    Over the years I've noted the number of "visionaries" who had a great first idea and a very bad second idea. Mr. Jobs was a prime example with the Lisa. But unlike some others, Steve had some amazing third, fourth, and fifth ideas.

    Lots of comparisons with other "visionaries" in the media today. Mayor Bloomberg compared him to Einstein. That's a bit over the top, I think. Henry Ford might be a better comparison. Neither "invented" the respective devices for which they became famous and successful. Each understood the potential of those devices in the mass consumer marketplace.

    No plaster saint, Jobs had a messy private life for many years. Not unlike many of us in his generation. And perhaps he could have done more good with his wealth than he did. But those criticisms are equally applicable to many of those to whom he's being compared today. They don't diminish his stature.

    All in all, he was a man of his time (as we all are.) Had he been born a decade earlier or later, the opportunities he exploited would almost certainly not have been there. And like Lennon and McCartney, he wouldn't have been the same figure without Woz. No great figure does it on his/her own. They all stand on the shoulders of giants, need the luck of timing, and almost always the help of collaborators. But genius at the right time and place is an 'insane' combination.

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    I don't know much about him, either - but that's why I'm buying his memoir. Actually, truthfully I wanted to buy it well before he died, right when I knew one was coming out. Because after I bought my iPad I fell in love with iOS and Apple and wanted to read his story. I'm going to pre-order it via iBooks and I'm sure after reading that I'll learn lots about him.

    I'm glad the stock is up. I'm sure Steve is smiling down on all of us right now. I believe in heaven, and so in my mind that's definitely where he is!
    Last edited by SweetPoison; 10-06-2011 at 03:41 PM.

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    From someone who has been along for the ride pretty much from the start.

    The Apple II was the first home PC to look and feel like something better than an enthusiast's kit and was sold by Apple dealers. The Apple I was definitely a kit (mail order only I think).

    At the time we talked of the "two Steve's", Steve Wozniak (Woz, the engineer) and Steve Jobs (the marketer).

    Two duds followed, the Apple III and the Lisa.

    It was about that time that Apple went public an event that affected both Steve's profoundly but in different ways. Woz didn't like corporate world and soon moved on to other things. Steve Jobs went on to work with, and do battle with, a succession of CEO's Mark Markulla, John Scully, Michael Spindler and others.

    Following the lack of success of the Lisa. Steve set up a "skunkworks" literally, across the road, out of which came the Macintosh.

    At some point after this Steve left Apple to start up Next, and along the way had a lot to do with Pixar. Next never really took off and this was, to a certain extent, a time in the wilderness for him.

    By the mid to late 90's Apple was underperforming, and Steve Job's became CEO. One of his first acts was to scrap the Newton Messagepad (condemming mine and everyone else's to the scrapheap). I think that he was on the Apple board while Newton was being developed but was opposed to it, I assume because the required technology was not really available.

    The rest is history the iMac, iPod, iPhone and iPad took Apple from and almost failed company to stellar success under Steve's stewardship.

    PS The cricketing equivalent of a home run is "hit for six".
    Last edited by RAC; 10-07-2011 at 02:45 AM.
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    As GoPackGo mentioned, I too cannot wait for the first authorized biography "Steve Jobs" by Walter Isaacson to come out (Oct. 24). The author's previous books (especially the Albert Einstein biography) were awesome (great audio books too). He interviewed Steve for the last time only a few weeks ago so it should be a great read and tell us much more about the man, the myth, the legend.
    Last edited by richsadams; 10-07-2011 at 02:14 AM.

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    Another Steve Jobs innovation that's often forgotten was the Apple LaserWriter - the first 'affordable' laser printer. This came out of Steve's interest in calligraphy and the classes that he'd 'dropped in on' while at college. That first laser printer had a 300 dpi resolution and the now-familiar toner cartridge plus a 'straight paper path' meaning it could print card too, something not many printers these days can do. In typical Apple Steve Jobs fashion, all the initial product discussions were held in the Good Earth restaurant in Mountain View (Silicon Valley).

    Tim

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    Quote Originally Posted by RAC View Post
    ...
    PS The cricketing equivalent of a home run is "hit for six".
    Thanks for that. I'll keep it in mind when I'm dealing with Anglophiles. Tried to figure out cricket once. But a game where a single at bat can last for three days is just beyond my ability to comprehend. Must be my American short attention span. In the context of this thread, however, it's perhaps very applicable to Mr. Jobs.


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