Steve Jobs 1955 – 2011

I’m sure by now you’ve heard that Steve Jobs passed away yesterday of cancer at the age of 56. This was shocking and sad news to many people, myself included. For those who do not know Steve Jobs co-founded Apple Computers with Steve Wozniak in 1976. Over the years he has been the visionary behind many of Apple’s greatest products and really changed the way many people view technology. Being that I work in technology I have followed Apple products over the years.

You know growing up you read about people like Thomas Edison, Alexander Graham Bell, and George Westinghouse. These were all visionaries and people who really thought outside of the box. For our generation Steve is one of those visionaries. Obviously I was really too young to follow the early Apple Computers, but since Steve returned to Apple in 1997 I think most of us in the technology field really followed Apple closely. If you think about it personal computers might not be what they are today without Steve Jobs.

All innovators have to take chances and of the first one that really shocked many of us with the introduction of the iPod in 2001. MP3’s were not that popular back then and many people did not think the device would be successful, but as you know it was a huge success. There were MP3 players out there, but no company really made one that caught on. I’m sure many of you reading this currently own or have owned an iPod. This was a step away from Computers for Apple and gave them what they needed to continue as a successful company.

Just 2 years later Apple introduced the iTunes Music Store, which allowed you to purchase music online and download it. This completely changed the music industry and is revolutionary. Before the iTunes music store most people were still going out and purchasing CD’s or buying MP3’s online and websites that most likely do not exist anymore.

In 2005 Steve gave a great commencement speech at Stanford in which he talks about life, start Apple, getting fired from Apple and much more. Instead of me talking about it you can watch it below.

In 2007 Apple introduced the iPhone, which as you know completely changed how we view mobile phones. Before the iPhone I really cannot think of a mobile touchscreen phone that was popular and worked well. It completely changed the way people see phones and really pushed them to become all in one devices. Now the iPhone is one on its 4th generation and is one of the most popular mobile devices of all time. Here is a video of the unveiling of the original iPhone.

After the iPhone other great accomplishments where the iTunes App Store and of course the iPad and iPad 2.

I am in now way an Apple Fanboy, I run all PC’s at home, although I do own an iPhone. Whether you like Apple products or not you have to think about what Steve did in his life and how his vision changed the way we view personal computers, phones and the music industry. He was a true pioneer and visionary. We are quite lucky to have a person like him in our lifetime, there are not many like him. He has given many people, including myself inspiration to do what we love and to “Think Different”.