Steve Jobs and his dad, 1956.


1955 Feb 24
, San Francisco

Steven Paul Jobs was born in San Francisco, California, on February 24, 1955, to Joanne Carole Schieble and Abdulfattah "John" Jandali. Jandali was born in an Arab Muslim household to a wealthy Syrian father and a housewife mother; he was the youngest of nine siblings. After obtaining his undergraduate degree at the American University of Beirut, Jandali pursued a PhD in political science at the University of Wisconsin. There, he met Joanne Schieble, an American Catholic of German descent whose parents owned a mink farm and real estate. The two fell in love but faced opposition from Schieble's father due to Jandali's Muslim faith. When Schieble became pregnant, she arranged for a closed adoption, and travelled to San Francisco to give birth.[1]

Schieble requested that her son be adopted by college graduates. A lawyer and his wife were selected, but they withdrew after discovering that the baby was a boy, so Jobs was instead adopted by Paul Reinhold and Clara (née Hagopian) Jobs. Paul Jobs was the son of a dairy farmer; after dropping out of high school, he worked as a mechanic, then joined the U.S. Coast Guard. When his ship was decommissioned, he met Clara Hagopian, an American of Armenian descent, and the two were engaged ten days later, in March 1946, and married that same year. The couple moved to Wisconsin, then Indiana, where Paul Jobs worked as a machinist and later as a car salesman. Since Clara missed San Francisco, she convinced Paul to move back. There, Paul worked as a repossession agent, and Clara became a bookkeeper. In 1955, after having an ectopic pregnancy, the couple looked to adopt a child.[2] Since they lacked a college education, Schieble initially refused to sign the adoption papers, and went to court to request that her son be removed from the Jobs household and placed with a different family, but changed her mind after Paul and Clara promised to pay for their son's college tuition.[1]

Steve Jobs (circled) at Homestead High School Electronics Club, Cupertino, California ca. 1969.


1967 Jan 1
, Los Altos

Paul Jobs worked in several jobs that included a try as a machinist,[2] several other jobs,[3] and then "back to work as a machinist". Paul and Clara adopted Jobs's sister Patricia in 1957[4] and by 1959 the family had moved to the Monta Loma neighborhood in Mountain View, California.[5] Paul built a workbench in his garage for his son in order to "pass along his love of mechanics". Jobs, meanwhile, admired his father's craftsmanship "because he knew how to build anything. If we needed a cabinet, he would build it. When he built our fence, he gave me a hammer so I could work with him … I wasn't that into fixing cars … but I was eager to hang out with my dad.[6] By the time he was ten, Jobs was deeply involved in electronics and befriended many of the engineers who lived in the neighborhood.[7] He had difficulty making friends with children his own age, however, and was seen by his classmates as a "loner".[7]

Jobs had difficulty functioning in a traditional classroom, tended to resist authority figures, frequently misbehaved, and was suspended a few times. Clara had taught him to read as a toddler, and Jobs stated that he was "pretty bored in school and turned into a little terror... you should have seen us in the third grade, we basically destroyed the teacher".[7] He frequently played pranks on others at Monta Loma Elementary School in Mountain View. His father Paul (who was abused as a child) never reprimanded him, however, and instead blamed the school for not challenging his brilliant son.[8]

Jobs would later credit his fourth grade teacher, Imogene "Teddy" Hill, with turning him around: "She taught an advanced fourth grade class, and it took her about a month to get hip to my situation. She bribed me into learning. She would say, 'I really want you to finish this workbook. I'll give you five bucks if you finish it.' That really kindled a passion in me for learning things! I learned more that year than I think I learned in any other year in school. They wanted me to skip the next two years in grade school and go straight to junior high to learn a foreign language, but my parents very wisely wouldn't let it happen." Jobs skipped the 5th grade and transferred to the 6th grade at Crittenden Middle School in Mountain View,[7] where he became a "socially awkward loner".[9] Jobs was often "bullied" at Crittenden Middle, and in the middle of 7th grade, he gave his parents an ultimatum: either they would take him out of Crittenden or he would drop out of school.[10]

The Jobs family was not affluent, and only by expending all their savings were they able to buy a new home in 1967, allowing Steve to change schools.[7] The new house (a three-bedroom home on Crist Drive in Los Altos, California) was in the better Cupertino School District, Cupertino, California,[11] and was embedded in an environment even more heavily populated with engineering families than the Mountain View area was.[7] The house was declared a historic site in 2013, as the first site of Apple Computer.[7]

When he was 13, in 1968, Jobs was given a summer job by Bill Hewlett (of Hewlett-Packard) after Jobs cold-called him to ask for parts for an electronics project.[7]

Jobs's 1972 Homestead High School yearbook photo. | ©Homestead High School

High School

1968 Jan 1
, Homestead High School

The location of the Los Altos home meant that Jobs would be able to attend nearby Homestead High School, which had strong ties to Silicon Valley.[9] He began his first year there in late 1968 along with Bill Fernandez,[7] who introduced Jobs to Steve Wozniak, and would become Apple's first employee. Neither Jobs nor Fernandez (whose father was a lawyer) came from engineering households and thus decided to enroll in John McCollum's Electronics I class.[7] Jobs had grown his hair long and become involved in the growing counterculture, and the rebellious youth eventually clashed with McCollum and lost interest in the class.[7]

He underwent a change during mid-1970: "I got stoned for the first time; I discovered Shakespeare, Dylan Thomas, and all that classic stuff. I read Moby Dick and went back as a junior taking creative writing classes."[7] Jobs later noted to his official biographer that "I started to listen to music a whole lot, and I started to read more outside of just science and technology—Shakespeare, Plato. I loved King Lear ... when I was a senior I had this phenomenal AP English class. The teacher was this guy who looked like Ernest Hemingway. He took a bunch of us snowshoeing in Yosemite." During his last two years at Homestead High, Jobs developed two different interests: electronics and literature.[12] These dual interests were particularly reflected during Jobs's senior year as his best friends were Wozniak and his first girlfriend, the artistic Homestead junior Chrisann Brennan.[13]

Woz's Blue Boxes

Woz's Blue Boxes

1971 Jan 1
, University of California

In 1971, after Wozniak began attending University of California, Berkeley, Jobs would visit him there a few times a week. This experience led him to study in nearby Stanford University's student union. Instead of joining the electronics club, Jobs put on light shows with a friend for Homestead's avant-garde jazz program. He was described by a Homestead classmate as "kind of brain and kind of hippie … but he never fit into either group. He was smart enough to be a nerd, but wasn't nerdy. And he was too intellectual for the hippies, who just wanted to get wasted all the time. He was kind of an outsider. In high school everything revolved around what group you were in, and if you weren't in a carefully defined group, you weren't anybody. He was an individual, in a world where individuality was suspect." By his senior year in late 1971, he was taking freshman English class at Stanford and working on a Homestead underground film project with Chrisann Brennan.

Around that time, Wozniak designed a low-cost digital "blue box" to generate the necessary tones to manipulate the telephone network, allowing free long-distance calls. He was inspired by an article titled "Secrets of the Little Blue Box" from the October 1971 issue of Esquire. Jobs decided then to sell them and split the profit with Wozniak. The clandestine sales of the illegal blue boxes went well and perhaps planted the seed in Jobs's mind that electronics could be both fun and profitable. In a 1994 interview, he recalled that it took six months for him and Wozniak to design the blue boxes. Jobs later reflected that had it not been for Wozniak's blue boxes, "there wouldn't have been an Apple". He states it showed them that they could take on large companies and beat them.

Reed College

1972 Sep 1
, Reed College

In September 1972, Jobs enrolled at Reed College in Portland, Oregon. He insisted on applying only to Reed, although it was an expensive school that Paul and Clara could ill afford. Jobs soon befriended Robert Friedland, who was Reed's student body president at that time. Brennan remained involved with Jobs while he was at Reed. He later asked her to come and live with him in a house he rented near the Reed campus, but she refused.

After just one semester, Jobs dropped out of Reed College without telling his parents. Jobs later explained this was because he did not want to spend his parents' money on an education that seemed meaningless to him. He continued to attend by auditing his classes, including a course on calligraphy that was taught by Robert Palladino. In a 2005 commencement speech at Stanford University, Jobs stated that during this period, he slept on the floor in friends' dorm rooms, returned Coke bottles for food money, and got weekly free meals at the local Hare Krishna temple. In that same speech, Jobs said: "If I had never dropped in on that single calligraphy course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts".

Steve works at Atari

Steve works at Atari

1974 Feb 1
, Los Altos

In February 1974, Jobs returned to his parents' home in Los Altos and began looking for a job. He was soon hired by Atari, Inc. in Los Gatos, California, as a technician. Back in 1973, Steve Wozniak designed his own version of the classic video game Pong and gave its electronics board to Jobs. According to Wozniak, Atari only hired Jobs because he took the board down to the company, and they thought that he had built it himself. Atari's cofounder Nolan Bushnell later described him as "difficult but valuable", pointing out that "he was very often the smartest guy in the room, and he would let people know that".

During this period, Jobs and Brennan remained involved with each other while continuing to see other people. By early 1974, Jobs was living what Brennan describes as a "simple life" in a Los Gatos cabin, working at Atari, and saving money for his impending trip to India.

India Trip

India Trip

1974 Jun 1
, Haidakhan Babaji Ashram

Jobs traveled to India in mid-1974 to visit Neem Karoli Baba at his Kainchi ashram with his Reed friend (and eventual Apple employee) Daniel Kottke, searching for spiritual enlightenment. When they got to the Neem Karoli ashram, it was almost deserted because Neem Karoli Baba had died in September 1973. Then they made a long trek up a dry riverbed to an ashram of Haidakhan Babaji.

1970s Hippie Commune

All One Farm

1975 Feb 1
, Portland

After seven months, Jobs left India and returned to the US ahead of Daniel Kottke. Jobs had changed his appearance; his head was shaved, and he wore traditional Indian clothing. During this time, Jobs experimented with psychedelics, later calling his LSD experiences "one of the two or three most important things [he had] done in [his] life". He spent a period at the All One Farm, a commune in Oregon that was owned by Robert Friedland. Brennan joined him there for a period.

Kōbun Chino Otogawa | ©Nicolas Schossleitner

Zen Buddhism

1975 Mar 1
, Tassajara Zen Mountain Center

During this time period, Jobs and Brennan both became practitioners of Zen Buddhism through the Zen master Kōbun Chino Otogawa. Jobs was living in his parents' backyard toolshed, which he had converted into a bedroom. Jobs engaged in lengthy meditation retreats at the Tassajara Zen Mountain Center, the oldest Sōtō Zen monastery in the US. He considered taking up monastic residence at Eihei-ji in Japan, and maintained a lifelong appreciation for Zen, Japanese cuisine, and artists such as Hasui Kawase.

Chip Challenge

Chip Challenge

1975 Apr 1
, Los Altos

Jobs returned to Atari in early 1975, and that summer, Bushnell assigned him to create a circuit board for the arcade video game Breakout in as few chips as possible, knowing that Jobs would recruit Wozniak for help. During his day job at HP, Wozniak drew sketches of the circuit design; at night, he joined Jobs at Atari and continued to refine the design, which Jobs implemented on a breadboard. According to Bushnell, Atari offered $100 (equivalent to about $500 in 2021) for each TTL chip that was eliminated in the machine. Jobs made a deal with Wozniak to split the fee evenly between them if Wozniak could minimize the number of chips. Much to the amazement of Atari engineers, within four days Wozniak reduced the TTL count to 45, far below the usual 100, though Atari later re-engineered it to make it easier to test and add a few missing features. According to Wozniak, Jobs told him that Atari paid them only $750 (instead of the actual $5,000), and that Wozniak's share was thus $375. Wozniak did not learn about the actual bonus until ten years later, but said that if Jobs had told him about it and explained that he needed the money, Wozniak would have given it to him.

The first meeting of the Homebrew Computer Club was held on March 5, 1975. Members included Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak.

Homebrew Club

1975 May 1
, Menlo Park

Jobs and Wozniak attended meetings of the Homebrew Computer Club in 1975, which was a stepping stone to the development and marketing of the first Apple computer.

Apple Inc

Apple Inc

1976 Apr 1
, Steve Jobs’s Garage

By March 1976, Wozniak completed the basic design of the Apple I computer and showed it to Jobs, who suggested that they sell it; Wozniak was at first skeptical of the idea but later agreed. In April of that same year, Jobs, Wozniak, and administrative overseer Ronald Wayne founded Apple Computer Company (now called "Apple Inc.") as a business partnership in Jobs's parents' Crist Drive home on April 1, 1976. The operation originally started in Jobs's bedroom and later moved to the garage. Wayne stayed briefly, leaving Jobs and Wozniak as the active primary cofounders of the company. The two decided on the name "Apple" after Jobs returned from the All One Farm commune in Oregon and told Wozniak about his time in the farm's apple orchard. Jobs originally planned to produce bare printed circuit boards of the Apple I and sell them to computer hobbyists for $50 (equivalent to about $240 in 2021) each. To fund the first batch, Wozniak sold his HP scientific calculator and Jobs sold his Volkswagen van. Later that year, computer retailer Paul Terrell purchased 50 fully assembled Apple I units for $500 each. Eventually about 200 Apple I computers were produced in total.

They received funding from a then-semi-retired Intel product marketing manager and engineer Mike Markkula. Scott McNealy, one of the cofounders of Sun Microsystems, said that Jobs broke a "glass age ceiling" in Silicon Valley because he'd created a very successful company at a young age. Markkula brought Apple to the attention of Arthur Rock, which after looking at the crowded Apple booth at the Home Brew Computer Show, started with a $60,000 investment and went on the Apple board. Jobs was not pleased when Markkula recruited Mike Scott from National Semiconductor in February 1977 to serve as the first president and CEO of Apple.



1977 Apr 1
, San Francisco

In April 1977, Jobs and Wozniak introduced the Apple II at the West Coast Computer Faire. It is the first consumer product to have been sold by Apple Computer. Primarily designed by Wozniak, Jobs oversaw the development of its unusual case and Rod Holt developed the unique power supply. During the design stage, Jobs argued that the Apple II should have two expansion slots, while Wozniak wanted eight. After a heated argument, Wozniak threatened that Jobs should "go get himself another computer". They later agreed on eight slots. The Apple II became one of the first highly successful mass-produced microcomputer products in the world.

Chrisann and Lisa Brennan


1977 Oct 1
, Cupertino

As Jobs became more successful with his new company, his relationship with Brennan grew more complex. In 1977, the success of Apple was now a part of their relationship, and Brennan, Daniel Kottke, and Jobs moved into a house near the Apple office in Cupertino. Brennan eventually took a position in the shipping department at Apple. Brennan's relationship with Jobs deteriorated as his position with Apple grew, and she began to consider ending the relationship. In October 1977, Brennan she realized she was pregnant, and that Jobs was the father. It took her a few days to tell Jobs, whose face, according to Brennan, "turned ugly" at the news. At the same time, according to Brennan, at the beginning of her third trimester, Jobs said to her: "I never wanted to ask that you get an abortion. I just didn't want to do that." He also refused to discuss the pregnancy with her. According to Brennan, Jobs "started to seed people with the notion that I slept around, and he was infertile, which meant that this could not be his child". A few weeks before she was due to give birth, Brennan was invited to deliver her baby at the All One Farm. She accepted the offer. When Jobs was 23 (the same age as his biological parents when they had him) Brennan gave birth to her baby, Lisa Brennan, on May 17, 1978. Jobs went there for the birth after he was contacted by Robert Friedland, their mutual friend and the farm owner. While distant, Jobs worked with her on a name for the baby, which they discussed while sitting in the fields on a blanket. Brennan suggested the name "Lisa" which Jobs also liked and notes that Jobs was very attached to the name "Lisa" while he "was also publicly denying paternity". She would discover later that during this time, Jobs was preparing to unveil a new kind of computer that he wanted to give a female name (his first choice was "Claire" after St. Clare). She stated that she never gave him permission to use the baby's name for a computer and he hid the plans from her. Jobs worked with his team to come up with the phrase, "Local Integrated Software Architecture" as an alternative explanation for the Apple Lisa. Decades later, however, Jobs admitted to his biographer Walter Isaacson that "obviously, it was named for my daughter".

When Jobs denied paternity, a DNA test established him as Lisa's father. It required him to pay Brennan $385 (equivalent to about $1,000 in 2021) monthly in addition to returning the welfare money she had received. Jobs paid her $500 (equivalent to about $1,400 in 2021) monthly at the time when Apple went public and made him a millionaire. Later, Brennan agreed to interview with Michael Moritz for Time magazine for its Time Person of the Year special, released on January 3, 1983, in which she discussed her relationship with Jobs. Rather than name Jobs the Person of the Year, the magazine named the generic personal computer the "Machine of the Year". In the issue, Jobs questioned the reliability of the paternity test, which stated that the "probability of paternity for Jobs, Steven... is 94.1%". He responded by arguing that "28% of the male population of the United States could be the father". Time also noted that "the baby girl and the machine on which Apple has placed so much hope for the future share the same name: Lisa".



1981 Jan 1 - 1984 Jan 24
, De Anza College

Jobs took over development of the Macintosh in 1981, from early Apple employee Jef Raskin, who had conceived the project. Wozniak and Raskin had heavily influenced the early program, and Wozniak was on leave during this time due to an airplane crash earlier that year, making it easier for Jobs to take over the project. On January 22, 1984, Apple aired a Super Bowl television commercial titled "1984", which ended with the words: "On January 24th, Apple Computer will introduce Macintosh. And you'll see why 1984 won't be like 1984." On January 24, 1984, an emotional Jobs introduced the Macintosh to a wildly enthusiastic audience at Apple's annual shareholders meeting held in the Flint Auditorium at De Anza College. Macintosh engineer Andy Hertzfeld described the scene as "pandemonium". The Macintosh was inspired by the Lisa (in turn inspired by Xerox PARC's mouse-driven graphical user interface), and it was widely acclaimed by the media with strong initial sales. However, its low performance and limited range of available software led to a rapid sales decline in the second half of 1984.

Steve Jobs with John Sculley

Jobs leaves Apple

1985 Sep 17
, Cupertino

By early 1985, the Macintosh's failure to defeat the IBM PC became clear,and it strengthened Sculley's position in the company. In May 1985, Sculley—encouraged by Arthur Rock—decided to reorganize Apple, and proposed a plan to the board that would remove Jobs from the Macintosh group and put him in charge of "New Product Development". This move would effectively render Jobs powerless within Apple.In response, Jobs then developed a plan to get rid of Sculley and take over Apple. However, Jobs was confronted after the plan was leaked, and he said that he would leave Apple. The Board declined his resignation and asked him to reconsider. Sculley also told Jobs that he had all of the votes needed to go ahead with the reorganization. A few months later, on September 17, 1985, Jobs submitted a letter of resignation to the Apple Board. Five additional senior Apple employees also resigned and joined Jobs in his new venture, NeXT.

The Macintosh's struggle continued after Jobs left Apple. Though marketed and received in fanfare, the expensive Macintosh was hard to sell. In 1985, Bill Gates's then-developing company, Microsoft, threatened to stop developing Mac applications unless it was granted "a license for the Mac operating system software. Microsoft was developing its graphical user interface ... for DOS, which it was calling Windows and didn't want Apple to sue over the similarities between the Windows GUI and the Mac interface." Sculley granted Microsoft the license which later led to problems for Apple. In addition, cheap IBM PC clones that ran Microsoft software and had a graphical user interface began to appear. Although the Macintosh preceded the clones, it was far more expensive, so "through the late 1980s, the Windows user interface was getting better and better and was thus taking increasingly more share from Apple". Windows-based IBM-PC clones also led to the development of additional GUIs such as IBM's TopView or Digital Research's GEM, and thus "the graphical user interface was beginning to be taken for granted, undermining the most apparent advantage of the Mac...it seemed clear as the 1980s wound down that Apple couldn't go it alone indefinitely against the whole IBM-clone market".

NeXT Chapter

NeXT Chapter

1985 Oct 1 - 1996
, Redwood City

Following his resignation from Apple in 1985, Jobs founded NeXT Inc. with $7 million. A year later he was running out of money, and he sought venture capital with no product on the horizon. Eventually, Jobs attracted the attention of billionaire Ross Perot, who invested heavily in the company. The NeXT computer was shown to the world in what was considered Jobs's comeback event, a lavish invitation-only gala launch event that was described as a multimedia extravaganza. The celebration was held at the Louise M. Davies Symphony Hall, San Francisco, California, on Wednesday, October 12, 1988. Steve Wozniak said in a 2013 interview that while Jobs was at NeXT he was "really getting his head together".

NeXT workstations were first released in 1990 and priced at $9,999 (equivalent to about $21,000 in 2021). Like the Apple Lisa, the NeXT workstation was technologically advanced and designed for the education sector, but was largely dismissed as cost-prohibitive. The NeXT workstation was known for its technical strengths, chief among them its object-oriented software development system. Jobs marketed NeXT products to the financial, scientific, and academic community, highlighting its innovative, experimental new technologies, such as the Mach kernel, the digital signal processor chip, and the built-in Ethernet port. Making use of a NeXT computer, English computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web in 1990 at CERN in Switzerland.

The revised, second generation NeXTcube was released in 1990. Jobs touted it as the first "interpersonal" computer that would replace the personal computer. With its innovative NeXTMail multimedia email system, NeXTcube could share voice, image, graphics, and video in email for the first time. "Interpersonal computing is going to revolutionize human communications and groupwork", Jobs told reporters. Jobs ran NeXT with an obsession for aesthetic perfection, as evidenced by the development of and attention to NeXTcube's magnesium case. This put considerable strain on NeXT's hardware division, and in 1993, after having sold only 50,000 machines, NeXT transitioned fully to software development with the release of NeXTSTEP/Intel. The company reported its first yearly profit of $1.03 million in 1994. In 1996, NeXT Software, Inc. released WebObjects, a framework for Web application development. After NeXT was acquired by Apple Inc. in 1997, WebObjects was used to build and run the Apple Store, MobileMe services, and the iTunes Store.



1986 Feb 3 - 2006 Jan 24
, Pixar Animation Studios

In 1986, Jobs funded the spinout of The Graphics Group (later renamed Pixar) from Lucasfilm's computer graphics division for the price of $10 million, $5 million of which was given to the company as capital and $5 million of which was paid to Lucasfilm for technology rights.

The first film produced by Pixar with its Disney partnership, Toy Story (1995), with Jobs credited as executive producer, brought financial success and critical acclaim to the studio when it was released. Over the course of Jobs's life, under Pixar's creative chief John Lasseter, the company produced box-office hits A Bug's Life (1998), Toy Story 2 (1999), Monsters, Inc. (2001), Finding Nemo (2003), The Incredibles (2004), Cars (2006), Ratatouille (2007), WALL-E (2008), Up (2009), Toy Story 3 (2010), and Cars 2 (2011).

Return to Apple

Return to Apple

1997 Feb 1
, Apple Infinite Loop

In 1996, Apple announced that it would buy NeXT for $400 million. The deal was finalized in February 1997, bringing Jobs back to the company he had cofounded. Jobs became de facto chief after then-CEO Gil Amelio was ousted in July 1997. He was formally named interim chief executive on September 16. In March 1998, to concentrate Apple's efforts on returning to profitability, Jobs terminated several projects, such as Newton, Cyberdog, and OpenDoc. In the coming months, many employees developed a fear of encountering Jobs while riding in the elevator, "afraid that they might not have a job when the doors opened. The reality was that Jobs's summary executions were rare, but a handful of victims was enough to terrorize a whole company." Jobs changed the licensing program for Macintosh clones, making it too costly for the manufacturers to continue making machines.

With the purchase of NeXT, much of the company's technology found its way into Apple products, most notably NeXTSTEP, which evolved into Mac OS X. Under Jobs's guidance, the company increased sales significantly with the introduction of the iMac and other new products; since then, appealing designs and powerful branding have worked well for Apple. At the 2000 Macworld Expo, Jobs officially dropped the "interim" modifier from his title at Apple and became permanent CEO. Jobs quipped at the time that he would be using the title "iCEO".

Thousand Songs in your Pocket

Thousand Songs in your Pocket

2001 Oct 23
, Apple Infinite Loop

Portable MP3 players had existed since the mid-1990s, but Apple found existing digital music players "big and clunky or small and useless" with user interfaces that were "unbelievably awful". They also identified weaknesses in existing models' attempt to negotiate the trade-off between capacity and portability; flash memory-based players held too few songs, while the hard drive based models were too big and heavy. To address these deficits, the company decided to develop its own MP3 player.

At Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ direction, hardware engineering chief Jon Rubinstein recruited Tony Fadell, a former employee of General Magic and Philips, who had a business idea to invent a better MP3 player and build a complementary music sales store.

The name iPod was proposed by Vinnie Chieco, a freelance copywriter, who (with others) was contracted by Apple to determine how to introduce the new player to the public. After Chieco saw a prototype, he was reminded of the phrase "Open the pod bay doors, Hal" from the classic sci-fi film 2001: A Space Odyssey, referring to the white EVA Pods of the Discovery One spaceship. Chieco's proposal drew an analogy between the relationship of the spaceship to the smaller independent pods and that of a personal computer to its companion music player.

The product (which Fortune called "Apple's 21st-Century Walkman") was developed in less than one year and unveiled on October 23, 2001. Jobs announced it as a Mac-compatible product with a 5 GB hard drive that put "1,000 songs in your pocket."

Health Problems

Health Problems

2003 Oct 1
, Cupertino

In October 2003, Jobs was diagnosed with cancer. In mid-2004, he announced to his employees that he had a cancerous tumor in his pancreas. The prognosis for pancreatic cancer is usually very poor; Jobs stated that he had a rare, much less aggressive type, known as islet cell neuroendocrine tumor.

Jobs resisted his doctors' recommendations for medical intervention for nine months, in favor of alternative medicine. According to Harvard researcher Ramzi Amri, this "led to an unnecessarily early death". Other doctors agree that Jobs's diet was insufficient to address his disease. However, cancer researcher and alternative medicine critic David Gorski wrote that "it's impossible to know whether and by how much he might have decreased his chances of surviving his cancer through his flirtation with woo. My best guess was that Jobs probably only modestly decreased his chances of survival, if that." Barrie R. Cassileth, the chief of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center's integrative medicine department, on the other hand, said, "Jobs's faith in alternative medicine likely cost him his life ... He had the only kind of pancreatic cancer that is treatable and curable ... He essentially committed suicide". According to biographer Walter Isaacson, "for nine months he refused to undergo surgery for his pancreatic cancer – a decision he later regretted as his health declined". "Instead, he tried a vegan diet, acupuncture, herbal remedies, and other treatments he found online, and even consulted a psychic. He was also influenced by a doctor who ran a clinic that advised juice fasts, bowel cleansings and other unproven approaches, before finally having surgery in July 2004." He underwent a pancreaticoduodenectomy (or "Whipple procedure") that appeared to remove the tumor successfully. Jobs did not receive chemotherapy or radiation therapy. During Jobs's absence, Tim Cook, head of worldwide sales and operations at Apple, ran the company.

Bob Iger and Steve Jobs before the Disney-Pixar merger.

Jobs and the Mouse

2006 Jan 24
, The Walt Disney Studios

In 2003 and 2004, as Pixar's contract with Disney was running out, Jobs and Disney chief executive Michael Eisner tried but failed to negotiate a new partnership, and in January 2004, Jobs announced that he would never deal with Disney again. Pixar would seek a new partner to distribute its films after its contract expired.

In October 2005, Bob Iger replaced Eisner at Disney, and Iger quickly worked to mend relations with Jobs and Pixar. On January 24, 2006, Jobs and Iger announced that Disney had agreed to purchase Pixar in an all-stock transaction worth $7.4 billion. When the deal closed, Jobs became The Walt Disney Company's largest single shareholder with approximately seven percent of the company's stock. Jobs's holdings in Disney far exceeded those of Eisner, who holds 1.7%, and of Disney family member Roy E. Disney, who until his 2009 death held about 1% of the company's stock and whose criticisms of Eisner—especially that he soured Disney's relationship with Pixar—accelerated Eisner's ousting. Upon completion of the merger, Jobs received 7% of Disney shares, and joined the board of directors as the largest individual shareholder. Upon Jobs's death his shares in Disney were transferred to the Steven P. Jobs Trust led by Laurene Jobs.



2007 Jan 9
, Moscone Center

Steve Jobs unveiled the first-generation iPhone to the public on January 9, 2007, at the Macworld 2007 convention at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. The iPhone incorporated a 3.5-inch multi-touch display with few hardware buttons, and ran the iPhone OS operating system with a touch-friendly interface, then marketed as a version of Mac OS X.

Liver Transplant

Liver Transplant

2009 Apr 1
, Methodist University Hospital

On January 14, 2009, Jobs wrote in an internal Apple memo that in the previous week he had "learned that my health-related issues are more complex than I originally thought". He announced a six-month leave of absence until the end of June 2009, to allow him to better focus on his health. Tim Cook, who previously acted as CEO in Jobs's 2004 absence, became acting CEO of Apple, with Jobs still involved with "major strategic decisions".

In 2009, Tim Cook offered a portion of his liver to Jobs, since both share a rare blood type and the donor liver can regenerate tissue after such an operation. Jobs yelled, "I'll never let you do that. I'll never do that."

In April 2009, Jobs underwent a liver transplant at Methodist University Hospital Transplant Institute in Memphis, Tennessee. Jobs's prognosis was described as "excellent".



2011 Aug 24
, Apple Infinite Loop

On January 17, 2011, a year and a half after Jobs returned to work following the liver transplant, Apple announced that he had been granted a medical leave of absence. Jobs announced his leave in a letter to employees, stating his decision was made "so he could focus on his health". As it did at the time of his 2009 medical leave, Apple announced that Tim Cook would run day-to-day operations and that Jobs would continue to be involved in major strategic decisions at the company. While on leave, Jobs appeared at the iPad 2 launch event on March 2, the WWDC keynote introducing iCloud on June 6, and before the Cupertino City Council on June 7.

On August 24, 2011, Jobs announced his resignation as Apple's CEO, writing to the board, "I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple's CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come." Jobs became chairman of the board and named Tim Cook as his successor as CEO. Jobs continued to work for Apple until the day before his death six weeks later.

Designer Jonathan Mak pays tribute to Steve Jobs.


2011 Oct 5
, Alta Mesa Memorial Park

Jobs died at his Palo Alto, California, home around 3 p.m. (PDT) on October 5, 2011, due to complications from a relapse of his previously treated islet-cell pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor, which resulted in respiratory arrest. He had lost consciousness the day before and died with his wife, children, and sisters at his side. His sister, Mona Simpson, described his death thus: "Steve's final words, hours earlier, were monosyllables, repeated three times. Before embarking, he'd looked at his sister Patty, then for a long time at his children, then at his life's partner, Laurene, and then over their shoulders past them. Steve's final words were: 'Oh wow. Oh wow. Oh wow.' " He then lost consciousness and died several hours later. A small private funeral was held on October 7, 2011, the details of which, out of respect for Jobs's family, were not made public.

Apple and Pixar each issued announcements of his death. Apple announced on the same day that they had no plans for a public service, but were encouraging "well-wishers" to send their remembrance messages to an email address created to receive such messages. Apple and Microsoft both flew their flags at half-staff throughout their respective headquarters and campuses.

Bob Iger ordered all Disney properties, including Walt Disney World and Disneyland, to fly their flags at half-staff from October 6 to 12, 2011. For two weeks following his death, Apple displayed on its corporate Web site a simple page that showed Jobs's name and lifespan next to his grayscale portrait. On October 19, 2011, Apple employees held a private memorial service for Jobs on the Apple campus in Cupertino. It was attended by Jobs's widow, Laurene, and by Tim Cook, Bill Campbell, Norah Jones, Al Gore, and Coldplay. Some of Apple's retail stores closed briefly so employees could attend the memorial. A video of the service was uploaded to Apple's website.

Childhood friend and fellow Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, former owner of what would become Pixar, George Lucas, former rival, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, and President Barack Obama all offered statements in response to his death.

At his request, Jobs was buried in an unmarked grave at Alta Mesa Memorial Park, the only nonsectarian cemetery in Palo Alto.


Footnotes for Steve Jobs.

  1. Isaacson 2011, pp. 1-4.
  2. Brashares, Ann (2001). Steve Jobs: Thinks Different. p. 8. ISBN 978-0761-31393-9. worked as a machinist
  3. Malone, Michael S. (1999). Infinite Loop: How the World's Most Insanely Great Computer Company Went Insane. ISBN 0-385-48684-7.
  4. Isaacson 2011, p. 5.
  5. DeBolt, Daniel (October 7, 2011). "Steve Jobs called Mountain View home as a child". Mountain View Voice.
  6. Isaacson 2011, pp. 5-6.
  7. Young, Jeffrey S. (1987). Steve Jobs: The Journey Is the Reward. Amazon Digital Services, 2011 ebook edition (originally Scott Foresman).
  8. Isaacson 2011, pp. 12-13.
  9. Isaacson 2011, p. 13.
  10. Isaacson 2011, pp. 13-14.
  11. Isaacson 2011, pp. 14.
  12. Isaacson 2011, p. 19.
  13. Isaacson 2011, pp. 21–32.


References for Steve Jobs.

  • Brennan, Chrisann (2013). The Bite in the Apple: a memoir of my life with Steve Jobs. New York, N.Y.: St. Martin's Press. ISBN 978-1-250-03876-0.
  • Isaacson, Walter (2011). Steve Jobs (1st ed.). New York, NY: Simon & Schuster. ISBN 978-1-4516-4853-9.
  • Linzmayer, Owen W. (2004). Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company. No Starch Press. ISBN 978-1-59327-010-0.
  • Schlender, Brent; Tetzeli, Rick (2015). Becoming Steve Jobs: The Evolution of a Reckless Upstart into a Visionary Leader. Crown Business. ISBN 978-0-7710-7914-6.
  • Smith, Alexander (2020). They Create Worlds: The Story of the People and Companies That Shaped the Video Game Industry, Volume 1: 1971–1982. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press. ISBN 978-1-138-38992-2.