New York: Apple announced on Wednesday that the visionary leader of Apple, Steve Jobs is no more. Steve was 56.
“We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today,” the company’s board of directors said in a statement. “Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve.”
To less informed people like me, who never took the pain of reading in detail about Steve but were reading in detail about the gadgets he released and the speeches he gave in B-Schools, this comes as a shocking news. When you read so much passion and dedication in the voice of a person and you see the commitment and synchronization in actions, you just feel that the person is larger than life, immune to common day problems and immune to death. The tragic irony of life is that it is so so untrue. We would not see the man anymore with a turtle nexk t-shirt and round glasses anymore holding the next Apple gadget during the iPhone launches.
Steve Jobs had been battling with a rare form of operable pancreatic cancer called an islet cell neuroendocrine tumor since 2004. He was diagnosed and “cured” of the disease but then it came back again in few years. Fortune magazine in 2008 had reported this when Apple released the news finally leading to investor speculation about the future of the company. There were no successors and Apple never paid attention to naming one and this led to the speculation. Steve Jobs ended this by announcing that he has “recovered”.
Its just that he did not want to get derailed from his path.
Steve Jobs was a perfectionist, demanded greatness from everyone at Apple. “He always has an aura around his persona,” said Bajarin, who met Jobs several times while covering the company for more than 20 years as a Creative Strategies analyst. “When you talk to him, you know you’re really talking to a brilliant mind.”
When I write this piece, i am inclined to think how great the man would be. Imagine starting the company with just one other person, a high school friend in a Silicon Valley garage in 1976 and then getting forced out of the company a decade later. The mental devastation would be just too much to bear. But Steve never broke down. He kept being at it and then when he came back to Apple for his second innings at the helm – what the world witnessed was a spectacular feat of achievement. Within years, the same company which was running a loss of $800 Mn annually was turned around to a company which stands today at a market capitalization of $351 Billion! First quarter of 2011 itself had revenues of 13.5 Billion USD.
One thing which strikes me is his commitment to his thoughts. He nurtured Apple even when he was dying. Six weeks back, he had finally felt that without him and without a strong leadership at the helm, Apple would collapse after him. And he would never let that happen – he handpicked his successor. Common men like you and I would think about our families when we know that we are going to die. He thought about his child – Apple.
When we hold our iPhones today and listen to music on the iPod touch or when we develop iPhone apps using the iPhone SDK – we always marvel at the beauty of the device. After knowing about Jobs as a person, i cant help marvel at the person. It is sad that Steve jobs is no more but his creativity, his perfectionism, his passion would live forever and keep inspiring all of us.