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End of An Era

End of An Era

Steve Jobs’ resignation letter

We are now living in the time that most of us have feared: Steve Jobs is no longer the CEO of Apple. That job now falls into the capable hands of Tim Cook, a man who has plenty of experience running the show; he has taken over a few times in the past due to Jobs’ declining health. I honour of Jobs and his work, I would like to take this opportunity to talk a bit more about him and his life.
There are many things about Jobs that the average person doesn’t know. In fact, talking to people about his resignation, more than half didn’t know the true cause of his illness; they just knew he left because of his health. Jobs is a cancer survivor; in 2004 he underwent surgery for the removal of an islet cell neuroendocrine tumour in his pancreas. This type of tumour is far less aggressive than the normal kind, however since that date his health has never been up to its usual standard. Between 2004 and 2011 he had to take time off of work to recuperate, which is when Cook took the reins. In 2009 Jobs suffered another major blow to his health with the need for a liver transplant. To date, it is unclear how long Jobs had been on the transplant list, although one assumes he would have been on it for a very long time.


While Jobs is most famous for the iPod and all subsequent ‘i’ designs, he did a lot more for computing than just release a music player. Many of my friends and I often sit back and remember the old school Mac’s that were the staple of almost every Australian primary school during the 90’s. These iMacs were especially awesome to young students because of their brightly colours, and there were many fights between the boys over who would be forced to sit at the pink computer (these fights never lasted long because the pinks were always taken by the girls).
Jobs began Apple back in 1971 when he and Steve Wozniak built and sold computers to a local computer shop. Despite having to get the parts on credit, the two were able to make a steady profit with the computer that ultimately became the Apple 1. In relation to modern computers, the Apple 1 was incredibly slow and hard to use, but in the 70s this was a revolutionary design that was faster and started up quicker than any other computing system around. The Apple 2 came in the late 70’s and with it the birth of home computing. For many of us a time without at least one computer in the home is unimaginable, but at that time computers were very hard and slow to run. It was Jobs’ dream to have a computer that would run ‘out of the box'; that is, to run without any need for additions. This design was taken up by many computer companies and still exists today with computers coming with pre-installed software like text editors and even games.


Despite having a fall out and ultimately leaving Apple in 1985, Jobs returned as CEO in 1997 and opened up the company to a brand new era. At that time, Macs were still floundering in the stocks and in the personal computing range, but Jobs had drastic plans such as joining forces with Microsoft to have every Apple computer comes standard with windows. After this, as we all know, came the iPod in 2001 and the rest is history.
Despite having been described as an egomaniac far too many times to quote here, Jobs has the outward appearance of a man who will do anything to make his company the best. This involves taking risks and hiring people who will work together towards a common goal. Call it egomania if you want, but even with a $1 a year salary he is still one of the richest people in the world.
This week Apple may have lost its founder as a CEO but Jobs will still remain on the board and will still give advice and wisdom when it is needed. Whether you love or hate Apple you cannot deny its impact on the world as we know it.

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