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Steve Jobs' Biography: Influence on The Modern World

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" In the world today people can’t imagine their lives without computers because they enable us to learn, work remotely, and be entertained wherever we are. We tend to take them for granted today because we can easily get things done in a timely manner. It has not always been that case because they have not always been user-friendly, affordable, and small enough to fit in a normal space. The only people that could use and afford computers were large companies and their employees because they were so complicated to use and the amount of time and work it took to make one made the cost rise, which made them unaffordable for the common person.

Also, the size of these machines made them unappealing to people because they didn’t know where they could put such a device in their home. Steve Jobs was one of the men responsible for making computers and technology in general user-friendly, affordable, and small enough to use as a personal device. Steven Paul Jobs was born on February 22, 1955, in San Francisco, California, to his biological parents Abdulfattah “John” Jandali and Joanne Schieble. At the time of his birth, they were both University Wisconsin graduate students and were unmarried at the time because Joanne Schieble’s parents did not approve of her marrying a Syrian, which gave her no choice but to move away on her own and put her baby up for adoption. Mr. Jandali said, “had it been his choice, he would have kept the baby.” A few years after they put their baby up for adoption they got married and had another child. Abdulfattah jandali also became a Political Science Professor and Joanne Schieble who later was known as Joanne Simpson became a Speech Therapist. Steve Jobs was adopted by Paul and Clara Jobs who adopted him and another child three years later. They were unable to have children so adoption was the only way that they could do that. Paul Jobs worked in the fields of finance and real estate for a while before going back to his true love, being a machinist and Clara Jobs worked as an accountant.

Steve Jobs had two siblings, Patti Jobs and Mona Simpson. Patti Jobs was his adopted sister who his parents adopted three years after they got him. Mona Simpson was his step-sister that his biological parents had after getting married and becoming a Professor and Speech Therapist. He didn’t know that Mona Simpson even existed until he was in his late 20’s and completed a successful attempt to find his biological parents. The two didn’t get a chance to meet until they were both adults, which gave them the perfect opportunity to start a relationship. He soon found out that she was a famous novelist and wrote the book “Anywhere But Here” and she also wrote a book on their relationship titled “A Regular Guy.” Mr. Jobs attended Homestead High School in Los Altos, California, which he where his interest in electronics really started to grow. When he was in high school he was so into electronics that he attended lectures at the Hewlett-Packard plant in Palo Alto, California. While Jobs was in high school he met Steve Wozniak in an electronic class they both took and later worked with him in the summer at Hewlett-Packard. After he graduated from Homestead High School in 1972 Mr. Jobs attended Reed College for just one semester before leaving to explore other options. Steve Jobs got married to Laurene Powell Jobs on March 18, 1991, in Yosemite National Park and ended up living in Woodside, California. During their marriage, they had three children by the names of Reed, Erin, and Eve Jobs. Mr. Jobs himself had another child by the name of Lisa Brennan Jobs with Chis Ann Brennan who was his high school girlfriend. He denied that he had Lisa for many years because he claimed that he was “sterile.” Chris Brennan ended up collecting welfare to support their daughter because she had financial trouble until Mr. Jobs finally admitted to everyone that Lisa Brennan Jobs was indeed his daughter. Steve Jobs’ career all started at a very young age when he became interested in electronics. He started in high school working at Hewlett-Packard in the summer with Steve Wozniak as a summer Intern. He also attended various lectures in the evenings after school at the Hewlett-Packard plant.

Once he graduated from high school and quit after his first semester of college he got a job at Atari Corporation as s video game designer. He was at Atari until he saved up enough money to travel to India. He traveled to India to find spiritual enlightenment along with his friend, Dan Kottke who he met while he went to Reed College for that short one semester. He then returned to California that same year to finish his spiritual journey and to find his next endeavor.

Once Mr. Jobs completed his journey he met back up with Mr. Wozniak at the “Homebrew Computer Club.” It was there that Steve Wozniak told him about his computer logic board project that he was currently working on and that HP was not letting him run with it. Mr. Jobs asked him there if he would like to go into business together, which they did after HP turned down Mr. Wozniak’s design for the computer logic board. In order to start working on their business together, they needed money so they ended up selling Mr. Jobs’s Volkswagen Minibus and Mr. Wozniak’s programmable calculator. Once they had the capital they started the design process of what would eventually be called the Apple I. When the design phase of the circuit board and video interface was completed they immediately started working on a prototype in Steve Jobeses’ garage. When the prototype was completed they named the product the Apple I and started their company named Apple. They named the company Apple only because it reminded Mr. Jobs of a summer job he at an apple orchard. The company logo quickly became an apple with a bite out of it, which was supposed to be a visual pun for the word “byte.” With the prototype in hand and a company name to go with it, both Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak set out to make sales. The first every sale was from a local electronics store that ordered twenty-five units. In just a short two-month period they began selling the Apple I to hobbyists and electronics enthusiasts and sold a total of six hundred units in 1976 totaling $774,000.

After just a little time both Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs introduced the Apple II, which was designed for beginners and the general public. The cost of the device was $1,300, which included a keyboard, power supply, and a case. It was that computer alone that set the standard for personal computers and made the young company $139 million, which was a growth of 700 percent. The company ended up going public in December of 1980 just because of the success of the two computers. When they first went public they were selling 46 million shares at $22 per share. When the stock market closed on that first day the Apple stock was at $29 per share, which gave Apple a market value of $1.2 billion dollars. That also gave the 8.3 million shares that Mr. Jobs owned a value of $239 million.

Over the next few years, Apple released a few different computers including the Apple III, LISA the third, and the Apple Macintosh. The Apple III was targeted toward companies because of its usability and cost. They ended up having to recall the first 14,000 because of various issues. During the time that Apple was recalling the Apple II, I'm IBM came out with their own personal computer, which made business even harder.

After the failure of the Apple III Jobs helped on the invention of the LISA, which was again targeted toward businesses and was a part of a new generation. LISA had so much to offer the business market including a 32-bit microprocessor and super-sharp video display. Even though there was a lot going for the LISA it never hit the ground running and never gained the popularity. After the failure of both the Apple III and LISA Steve Jobs announced the Apple Macintosh, which had so much to offer including a user-friendly user interface and the introduction of the mouse. The introduction of the mouse gave consumers the ability to point and click. The Macintosh gave anyone the ability to use a computer because the setup was so easy and you no longer needed to know the commands like on the other products.

Even though the Macintosh had so much to offer the average consumer, people still were not biting which made sales dramatically decrease from the ones in 1982 of $583,000,000, which was up by 74% from 1981. When the sales decreased on all the Apple products Steve Jobs began to fight with the board of directors and especially the CEO at the time, John Scully. The combination of all those things together made the board make a really hard decision to not give any projects to Jobs, which made him leave the company. After leaving the company in 1985 he sold all his stock and moved on to another endeavor. After Steve Jobs left Apple and sold his stock in 1985 he used $100 million of his own money to start a company called NeXT.

The company had one big goal which was “to build a breakthrough computer that would revolutionize research and higher education.” At the beginning of this new venture, NeXT Steve Jobs and his crew worked day and night to create and develop their first operating system called NeXTStep. It made the computer really easy to use and even program because it used something called “object-oriented programming.” This new operating system became the biggest rival to others such as Windows and MS-DOS. Jobs was even able to secure a deal for $10 million with the IBM CEO, John Acker that they would adapt their computers to start using the NeXTStep operating system. IBM soon developed their own operating system that was known to be much better than NeXTStep. In 1989 Jobs announced the first NeXT computer that ran their own software. It featured many advanced parts from an optical-disc drive, video monitor, and even compact disc-quality music.

The cost was just too high for the consumers so a short time later in 1993 he decided to stop the production of the hardware, close their high-tech factory, lay off more than half of their workforce, and focus just on the software side. When they totally switched to software development they were able to convince big companies such as Hewlett-Packard, Digital Equipment Corp., and Sun Microsystems to package the NeXTStep software with their products. It was those companies alone that helped NeXT be seen as another option besides Microsoft. NeXT once again changed their direction and began working on an operating system for Microsoft with object-oriented programming. That same year, 1995 was the first of nine years that he was actually able to turn a profit. While Steve Jobs continued to pursue his new venture of NeXT, Apple continued to see nothing but loses.

In 1995 Apple ended up buying NeXT Inc. for more than $400 million and ended up rehiring Steve Jobs as an advisor a year later. Even with Jobs back in the company as an advisor, they continued to lose money until the CEO, Gilbert F. Amelio resigned in 1997. In 1997 Steve Jobs was named Interim CEO of Apple and in 2000 he was named permanent CEO. When Steve Jobs was at the head of his own company once again he began to make huge changes and started to introduce a new product.

The first product once again that he introduced was the iMac in 1998. The iMac looked a little different, came in one piece, offered one of the fastest processors on the market, and came in multiple bright colors. It was priced just right and they knew it because by the end of the year it was the nations most popular personal computer. Because of the great success that the iMac had in one year, Mr. Jobs was able to announce a good report on profits. Throughout the next few years, he was able to continue to innovate by creating the iBook, which was a nice-looking laptop that was built for education in mind. Fast forward a few years and in 2001 he changed the way we listen to music forever. The application that he came up with is called iTunes, which is a computer program that gives you the ability to buy, listen, and download music on your computer. Later in 2001 he even came up with something more amazing called the iPod. An iPod is a mobile device that you can download music onto and listen to wherever you are and that became a leader in the market very quickly. Another big leap that Apple took in the music industry was in 2003 when they came out the iTunes Store.

The iTunes Store is where you can buy music in MP3 format and download it directly to your computer or iPod. The iTunes Store grew so quickly that in 2006 they announced that there were more than one billion sales of songs and videos. In order to show that Apple was more than a computer company now Steve Jobs renamed the company from Apple Computer Inc. to Apple Inc. on January 9, 2007. Later on, in 2007 Steve Jobs took another big leap into the phone business with the announcement of the iPhone. An iPhone is a mobile device with the capabilities of playing music, searching on the internet, and of course, talking on the phone. By the year 2010, they sold a total of over 90 million iPhones. Another device that he announced even later that year was the iPod Touch. An iPod touch is everything that a normal iPod is but it also has a touchscreen, access to the internet over Wi-Fi, and access to games from the iTunes Store. Mr. Jobs continued to develop great products over the years including the iPad, MacBook, IOS operating system, and the Mac operating system.

During the time that he announced the iTunes Store in 2003, he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He ended up not having surgery to remove the disease until 2004 because he was into finding alternative medicine options. When 2004 rolled around he went in for a surgery called the “Whipple operation” to remove “part of the pancreas, a portion of the bile duct, the gallbladder, and the duodenum.” After he took off a little time to recover he returned to his position as CEO. Unfortunately, the health problems didn’t stop after his surgery in 2004. In 2008, he began to lose a large amount of weight, which made people think that cancer may be back.

The stock prices ended up being somewhat connected to his health, which made the investors in the company very concerned with their money once again and asks for a full report on his health. After the investors asked for a full report on his health Steve Jobs announced that he was suffering from a hormonal imbalance but was getting treatment for it and wanted to continue working. He then announced one week later that he was going to take a leave of absence from his position to fully focus on his health. While he was on the leave of absence he had a liver transplant, which was done in Tennessee because the waiting period was a lot shorter compared to a lot of states. Steve Jobs promised that he would return to work at the end of June and he did exactly that by returning on June 29, 2009.

However, he went on another leave of absence in January of 2011 before returning to work for a short time before permanently resigning his position in August of 2011, which is when he handed the position to Tim Cook. He became the chairman of the board for a short time before passing away on October 5, 2011, at his home in Palo Alto, California. He had an estimated net worth of $7 billion or more. After the news of his passing got released many people including the Apple board of directors and his biographer, Walter Isaacson took to the media to thank Steve Jobs for everything that he did to help us be where we are today. The Apple board of directors said, “Steve’s brilliance, passion, and energy were the sources of the countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives.” Walter Isaacson said Steve Jobs “was the greatest business executive of our era, the one most certain to remember a century from now. History will place him in the pantheon right next to Thomas Edison and Henry Ford.”

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