Software

Steve Jobs has passed away, tech world mourns

Steve Jobs, the long-time CEO and co-founder of Apple, has died. Here is the official statement from Apple, a note from Bill Gates, and more.

Apple co-founder and long-time CEO Steve Jobs has passed away today after a long fight with pancreatic cancer. Jobs resigned as CEO in August and didn't appear yesterday at Apple's launch of the latest edition of the iPhone.

Statement from Apple

Here is the public statement from Apple's board of directors:

We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today.

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.

His greatest love was for his wife, Laurene, and his family. Our hearts go out to them and to all who were touched by his extraordinary gifts.

Tribute on Apple.com

Apple has placed a simple tribute to Steve on its homepage:

Statement from Jobs' family

The family of Steve Jobs released this statement:

Steve died peacefully today surrounded by his family.

In his public life, Steve was known as a visionary; in his private life, he cherished his family. We are thankful to the many people who have shared their wishes and prayers during the last year of Steve’s illness; a website will be provided for those who wish to offer tributes and memories.

We are grateful for the support and kindness of those who share our feelings for Steve. We know many of you will mourn with us, and we ask that you respect our privacy during our time of grief.

Tim Cook's email to Apple employees

Here is the email message that CEO Tim Cook sent to his employees at Apple:

Team,

I have some very sad news to share with all of you. Steve passed away earlier today.

Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being. Those of us who have been fortunate enough to know and work with Steve have lost a dear friend and an inspiring mentor. Steve leaves behind a company that only he could have built, and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple.

We are planning a celebration of Steve’s extraordinary life for Apple employees that will take place soon. If you would like to share your thoughts, memories and condolences in the interim, you can simply email rememberingsteve@apple.com.

No words can adequately express our sadness at Steve’s death or our gratitude for the opportunity to work with him. We will honor his memory by dedicating ourselves to continuing the work he loved so much.

Tim

Note from Bill Gates

Jobs' longtime friend and rival Bill Gates of Microsoft released the following statement:

I'm truly saddened to learn of Steve Jobs' death. Melinda and I extend our sincere condolences to his family and friends, and to everyone Steve has touched through his work.

Steve and I first met nearly 30 years ago, and have been colleagues, competitors and friends over the course of more than half our lives.

The world rarely sees someone who has had the profound impact Steve has had, the effects of which will be felt for many generations to come.

For those of us lucky enough to get to work with him, it’s been an insanely great honor. I will miss Steve immensely.

Note from Steve Ballmer

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer offered the following statement:

"I want to express my deepest condolences at the passing of Steve Jobs, one of the founders of our industry and a true visionary. My heart goes out to his family, everyone at Apple and everyone who has been touched by his work."

Notes from Google founders

Google CEO Larry Page made this statement:

"I am very, very sad to hear the news about Steve. He was a great man with incredible achievements and amazing brilliance. He always seemed to be able to say in very few words what you actually should have been thinking before you thought it. His focus on the user experience above all else has always been an inspiration to me. He was very kind to reach out to me as I became CEO of Google and spend time offering his advice and knowledge even though he was not at all well. My thoughts and Google's are with his family and the whole Apple family."

Google co-founder Sergey Brin made this statement:

"From the earliest days of Google, whenever Larry and I sought inspiration for vision and leadership, we needed to look no farther than Cupertino. Steve, your passion for excellence is felt by anyone who has ever touched an Apple product (including the macbook I am writing this on right now). And I have witnessed it in person the few times we have met.

On behalf of all of us at Google and more broadly in technology, you will be missed very much. My condolences to family, friends, and colleagues at Apple."

Note from Marc Andreessen

Web pioneer Marc Andreessen said that Jobs beamed products from 10 to 20 years in the future.

"He was the most amazing product visionary our industry had or will ever have."

Note from President Obama

U.S. President Barack Obama released the following statement:

Michelle and I are saddened to learn of the passing of Steve Jobs. Steve was among the greatest of American innovators – brave enough to think differently, bold enough to believe he could change the world, and talented enough to do it.

By building one of the planet’s most successful companies from his garage, he exemplified the spirit of American ingenuity.  By making computers personal and putting the internet in our pockets, he made the information revolution not only accessible, but intuitive and fun.  And by turning his talents to storytelling, he has brought joy to millions of children and grownups alike. Steve was fond of saying that he lived every day like it was his last.  Because he did, he transformed our lives, redefined entire industries, and achieved one of the rarest feats in human history: he changed the way each of us sees the world.

The world has lost a visionary. And there may be no greater tribute to Steve’s success than the fact that much of the world learned of his passing on a device he invented. Michelle and I send our thoughts and prayers to Steve’s wife Laurene, his family, and all those who loved him.

CNET video tribute

CBS News video tribute

Steve Jobs on mortality

In his commencement address at Stanford University in 2005, after he had just came back from cancer the first time, Jobs said:

"Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary."

Here is the video of the full 15-minute commencement speech at Stanford:

My take

A century from now, people will still marvel at how Steve Jobs changed the world by humanizing technology. That will be his legacy.

Further reading

About

Jason Hiner is the Global Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Global Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He is an award-winning journalist who writes about the people, products, and ideas that are revolutionizing the ways we live and work in the 21st century.

110 comments
Nathan Corf
Nathan Corf

He was one of the most brilliant mind around the IT. His legacy reflects his passion and innovativeness.

ravinderpsingh
ravinderpsingh

We looked at all the emotions in social media about this great man steve jobs and came up with this graphic which is on our site at www.socialnuggets.net

techrepublic
techrepublic

There are only three important Apples in this planet's history. The first was the Apple given by Eve to Adam at the dawn of time. The second fell on Sir Isaac Newton's head which inspired him to formulate his theory of gravitation. The third was a technology company, whose fruits were born in the mind of a genius, and forever changed the way that humans inter-relate with each other on a daily basis. Incredible vision, exquisite products, irreplaceable, forever missed.

AllenT_z
AllenT_z

What if Gates and Jobs had been partners instead of rivals? The age difference would have made this very unlikely, but what that team could have accomplished boggles my mind. Or perhaps one of them would have killed the other, spent his life in jail, and the world would have been deprived of the fruits of two unique minds. Allen

bluntpencil
bluntpencil

I wonder if he thought how the hell am I going to top that in my next life. I mean the only way is down after such a performance. I sincerely hope that he was surrounded by the people he loved most because that is all that matters in the end. His death also cuts through all the tech wizardry that makes us forget the reality that true life is not powered by rechargable batteries. Godspeed , Mr Jobs.

Englebert
Englebert

Nay, in fact was a step or two ahead of the business world. So often we hear of techno-geeks who cannot communicate in the biz world. Jobs immortal statement to Pepsi's Scully epitomized his vision " Do you want to spend the rest of your life pushing sugar water, or do you want to change the way business operates " One cannot help but wonder what the C level execs are thinking at this time. Those in charge of the multi-national corporations, whose vision are short-term from quarter to quarter, off-shoring and downsizing, finagling and fudging the books, bailouts and obscene compensation packages. What do they think of a man who wore faded blue jeans and black turtle-neck to their power suits, ties, shoes ? Their silence is deafening.

abdul rafe
abdul rafe

it is sad to hear,our techman died. so follows him in Be innovative,be the line breaker. be aggressive.stop foollowing to fool. leave your job,stop being scapegoat. live your passion, Be the Steve Jobs. pay tribute to Jobs.Goob bye Jobs.

gdav
gdav

I once read a interview with the late John F. Kennedy Jr. The interviewer said "If you got into politics, you could be a great man". JFK Jr. replied "I would rather be a good man". From all I have read about Jobs, it appears he was a great man but not a good man, judging by what he accomplished in the IT world and what he did to his first daughter and her mother.

wds21921
wds21921

A father in her life. Steve went so far as to say that he was sterile to deny parental responsibility. He remained estranged from her for her whole life until about 4 yrs ago. To make up for it he paid for her college tuition, wow I'm sure that made up for 15-20 years of not taking care of your responsibilities! FACT!!!

wds21921
wds21921

OMG for the last 24 hours all I've heard is Steve Jobs, please already. The guy helped to invent overpriced products for those stupid enough to pay the inflated prices. This isn't someone who saved lives people! I mean next we'll have the Apple fanboys creating a video for us showing us how well Steve was able to walk on water. He mad e a better music player and a phone that has some of the same capabilities (albeit in a small way) as a computer and then something that was smaller than a laptop without the storage space or the RAM and it can't even use flashplayer. He didn't invent the polio vaccine and he didn't invent the airplane!

DrRoot
DrRoot

Indeed a true revolusionary and without such people in this world, this world would not be as much successful or lets say innovative. Steve jobs paved the way for new comers, may your soul rest in peace Steve, you are in better place.

Michael Jay
Michael Jay

Folks like Steve don't come around very often and I do not want to believe that his passing will damage Apple, only time will tell. Again, my condolences to family and friends. Spotted this limerick over at the Shark Tank in the comments from O2BIrish, thought it sweet and respectful; Jobs is gone, people said with a sigh. He was such an intelligent guy. He's a man on a mission A man with great vision, The Apple of everyone's i. Credit: Shark Tank; http://blogs.computerworld.com/19032/squeeze_play O2BIrish http://www.o2birish.com/

xmechanic
xmechanic

My sincere condolences to Steve's family. You were one of the greatest visionaries of our time, and you will not be forgotten. You taught a large part of the world how to 'Think Different'. :)) Sent from my new Mac Pro. ;)

pbealtx
pbealtx

The Henry Ford of the tech era.

rgoodrich
rgoodrich

I sincerely believe that Steve Jobs will be remembered as the Edison of our time. So many innovations, such vision for society. I hope that many, many people have learned from him, but then I realize that they have. Emulation is the sincerest form of flattery. Can it be doubted that Apple's products have been greatly emulated?

banzairunner
banzairunner

This shows us all just how much he's impacted our circles! Like him or not, you've got to respect his impact. Think about whenever God calls you home, how much of an impact do you want to leave on the world? Whether he planned it nor not, Steve Jobs sure impacted our lives. May we all live up to the pioneering spirit of Jobs and others like him!

Junaid Shah
Junaid Shah

was a great person as well ,, "Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything ??? all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart." -Steve Jobs. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

jasondlnd
jasondlnd

There have been few people who possess all of those qualities. Those who are able to be all four simultaneously are destined to change the world. Steve Jobs was all four all at once, with elements of passion, creativity, and a no-nonsense personality thrown in for good measure. Everywhere Jobs went, he turned the status quo upside down and re-molded it in his image. GUI and desktop environment? True, neither he nor Apple created it, but it was unheard of on a personal computer until Apple produced the LISA and the Mac. Easy to reach power switch on a computer? Insisted upon by Jobs. (heck, they were right on the keyboard of the Mac) Program Launcher (the basis for Microsoft's Start Menu we all know and love)? Again, Jobs and Apple. Touch screen on a smartphone or tablet? The entire tech industry was using clunky styluses and frustrating input methods until Jobs insisted on an easy to use tablet, music player, and phone that you could simply "touch" with your fingers. Although those are a few examples, his reach went far beyond Apple. Jobs was at the core of the creation of Pixar, which turned Hollywood on it's head when they released the first entirely computer animated movie in 1995. On top of it all, the passion he had for his products, creations, and vision really shone through when he would give public presentations. He never gave in...never gave up...and never let his guard down in public. To some, he was an arrogant jerk, to others he was their boss and fearsome leader, and still to others he was a genius. All of these things and more are what made him human. He will definitely be missed. May he rest in peace and may his family receive comfort at this difficult time.

fa023678
fa023678

Microsoft gave us a lot of computers, but Apple and Steve gave us their useability. Thanks.

dayen
dayen

A Great Loss to the world and way too young just sad

chriskent_skf
chriskent_skf

It takes a set of skills few people posses, Steve was a person with vision, he was a person who had the ability to take ideas and manifest them into products which for the best part enriched our lives. He was not the be all and end all with every idea or product, what matters is that when he fell down he got right back up and moved forward and kept his company/staff moving forward. I think I am smart at what I do but I am also honest enough to understand/admit that I am no Steve Jobs, he was a "leader". Many of us have ideas, ambitions and desires. Where most of fail is in not taking these to the next level, as he did. Steve was an inspiration to many individuals worldwide, he will be missed for a variety of reasons. My deepest condolences to the Jobs family, my thoughts and prayers are with you.

larrysteinke
larrysteinke

Am I the only one that didn't expect him at the iPhone launch after passing away? In the opening statements on this page I read: "Apple co-founder and long-time CEO Steve Jobs has passed away today.......and didn???t appear yesterday at Apple???s launch of the latest edition of the iPhone." Really? Let him rest. He has officially retired now. May he rest in peace.

aw
aw

The ASCII Group, founded in 1984 and is the world's oldest community of computer solution providers and VARs sends our condolences to the Job's family. While we predominately support the Microsoft and open source standards, without Apple, all other standards and the world would not be were it is today, because of Job's drive for excellence and pushing limits, without quesion.

dmainsot
dmainsot

At 80's when we were teenagers, we met Jobs and Bozniak as Apple founders and we never imagine about electronics and tecnology evolution for Apple I, II, Macintosh and Lisa, but Jobs made the difference. "The king is dead, long live the king"

seunweb
seunweb

I have lost a mentor in Steve Jobs. I guess my time is limited and I should not be trapped by dogma.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

hm.. mustly just curiousity but I was looking for a quote from Mr Wozniak in the article.

fglbert
fglbert

God bless his family in this tough time.

Vulpinemac
Vulpinemac

When I first heard the news about Steve Jobs' death, I felt almost exactly the way I did when I first heard about the murder of President John F. Kennedy -- "It can't be, he just couldn't be dead." I was 9 years old at the time and President Kennedy was the darling of the day to many people--and hated by just as many if not more. Strangely, Steve Jobs' death offered an interesting emotional parallel. Yes, I'm a lot older now and nowhere near as innocent. I knew more about Jobs' cancer than most of you because I am active with my county's Relay For Life organization to support the American Cancer Society. Steve Jobs was an amazing 7-year survivor of a cancer that usually kills within months. Still, his passing so soon after officially retiring from Apple as CEO caught me by surprise. Steve truly did stay as long as he was physically able. I have followed Apple since my original Apple II computer, almost exactly 32 years ago. I saw how Apple's machines were easier to use and always just that one step ahead of nearly every competitor through the opening years and stayed ahead at least to some extent even while he was away. I wasn't paying attention to Jobs himself, but rather the company itself as an entity. However, it was impossible to miss the changes that occurred when Steve Jobs returned. No longer was it just Apple Computer, Inc., but rather Steve Jobs' Apple. Visionary? I'd call him a fox in the business world. He went against established norms that went back to the days of real corporate growth in America--when Sears and so many companies made their fortunes on providing products people didn't even know they wanted. Who would have thought you could buy a house through a catalog? Who would have thought you could carry more than a dozen tunes in that little plastic box on your hip? Obviously Jobs never played it 'safe', but he made sure the product was as good as it could be before he released it to the public. Steve, you will be missed. I hope your example inspires many more like you.

hmosena
hmosena

We will miss u Steve, rest in peace. The whole world will miss you.

JJFitz
JJFitz

I was saddened to hear the news of Steve Jobs passing away. He was a driving force behind technology design and functionality. He was truly an "influencer" by Malcolm Gladwell's definition.

spdragoo
spdragoo

My first exposure to computers was the Apple II+ our TAG (Talented & Gifted) class had back in 4th grade. Loved working on it -- not only was Oregon Trail fun, but I had a blast with the programming (including adding things beyond the assignment requirements). I'm more comfortable with Windows-based PCs now, and I may think that the Apple fanbois resemble a bit too much the Jim Jones cultists at times, but I admire what he's done for the PC and consumer electronics industries overall. He wasn't perfect, & neither have his inventions & innovations been perfect. But he's had a profound impact on our lives for such a short life -- and 56 years is way too short of a life. He will be missed.

rlafever
rlafever

The terms legend and icon seem insufficient to describe Steve Jobs. While his impact may be measured in the Mac family, iPhone and iPad his contributions go beyond these or even the success of Apple. He was a pathfinder - a human GPS for the rest of us. His emphasis on ease of use and human interface made millions of jobs easier and more effective as a result. Competitors then made their products to the new standard - thus developing innovative new business, education, social, medical, and entertainment opportunities. Particularly effective in driving internet adoption as a business, communication, and education staple has transformed - and improved - the life of people around the world. Thanks Mr. Jobs - the great jobs creator. Our prayers go out to your family.

zahir.ahmed1
zahir.ahmed1

A great human being has died today - the worls is a sad place for all techies alike Steve you will be missed greatly and your legacy will remain forever and ever

Mark A. Lewis
Mark A. Lewis

Rest in peace, Steve. The world will miss you.

HAL 9000
HAL 9000

Who the Technology Company stole the Logo from doesn't count I suppose? You need to remember all of Apples history the Good and Bad. Col

JJFitz
JJFitz

Steve Jobs and Bill Gates were born in the same year. I don't think either of them would have survived being partners. It seems to me that they were more independent thinkers than collaborators.

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

You've never done anything in your life which you later regretted? Is your problem that Jobs was human and made mistakes or that he made this particular mistake? My understanding is that Jobs admitted paternity while she was still relatively young, that she lived with him for several years before and during college, and that they were on good terms at his death.

JJFitz
JJFitz

Jobs was not an inventor on par with Edison. Jobs was a great salesman and innovator who could take technology that already existed (desktops, laptops, MP3 players, smartphones, and tablets) and make them more user friendly and accessible to the average consumer.

JamesRL
JamesRL

And thats what Jobs did, find a product, even if it was one of his own, and make it better.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

it was just strange tha the article didn't include a quote from Mr Wozniak given his involvement in starting apple. Kind of like if Mr Teller passed and no quote was included from Mr Penn.

JJFitz
JJFitz

True, Edison innovated and improved the performance and functionality of a good many things (such as the lightbulb) just as Jobs did. Edison personally produced many things from concept to final product. He held over 1000 patents in his own name . I highly doubt that Jobs personally built more than a handful of the prototypes or ever developed a way to mass produce the final product that stemmed from the 300+ Apple patents that list Steve Jobs as a part of a team of inventors. This is not a negative criticism in any way. Steve Jobs had "mad skills" as my son would say. He got the right people together to improve things that already existed and then his company marketed them under his direction. That makes Jobs a great innovator, marketer, and salesman. It does not make him the prolific inventor that Thomas Edison was.