Author Topic: Steve Jobs Resigns From Apple  (Read 1848 times)

Offline Battle

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Steve Jobs Resigns From Apple
« on: August 24, 2011, 04:50:58 pm »
" 'Bout time!"
Steve Jobs Resigns From Apple

(Reuters) - Silicon Valley legend Steve Jobs on Wednesday resigned as chief executive of Apple Inc in a stunning move that ended his 14-year reign at the technology giant he co-founded in a garage.

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Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Re: Steve Jobs Resigns From Apple
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2011, 06:04:09 am »
NEW YORK TIMES:

August 25, 2011
Where Some Earn Enmity, Jobs Won Affection
By CLAIRE CAIN MILLER

SAN FRANCISCO — Steven P. Jobs — domineering, short-tempered and anything but warm and fuzzy — has done something few business people in history have ever accomplished: engender genuine affection.

His decision to step down as chief executive of Apple brought people to tears, inspired loving tributes to him on the Web and even had some adoring customers flocking to Apple stores on Thursday to share their sentiments with other fans of Macs, iPhones and iPads.

“Through the mist in my eyes, I am having a tough time focusing on the screen of this computer,” wrote Om Malik, the prominent technology blogger. “I want to wake up and find it was all a nightmare.”

Andrew Baughen, a church vicar from London who paused during his San Francisco vacation to shop at an Apple store after he heard the news, said he was praying for Mr. Jobs. Apple, he said, “is not a corporation. It’s more like a family, a movement. I’d like to meet him in heaven and say, ‘Thank you.’ ”

Business leaders, whether fictional like Ebenezer Scrooge and Gordon Gekko or real like Rupert Murdoch or Lloyd Blankfein of Goldman Sachs, are usually regarded with considerably less warmth, as rapacious rather than revered. 

“It’s unusual right here, right now, given that Americans’ feelings about business are just north of their feelings about Congress,” said Nancy F. Koehn, a historian at Harvard Business School.

That Mr. Jobs is seriously ill gave the tributes a poignancy and sense of foreboding. But the aloof man in a black turtleneck — who spent the last month on a yacht with his family, according to people with knowledge of his whereabouts — also managed to foster familial emotions among those who work in technology and business and ordinary people who use Apple products.

“Every decade or so, an icon emerges who both has a Midas touch and is in an industry that is in our collective consciousness,” said Jon Kulok, co-founder of Edge Research, a marketing research firm for corporations and nonprofits. “However, unlike those figures, he goes out at the top of his game, and some of the commentary today reflects his going out on top.” 

There were hundreds of thousands of messages shared online about Steve Jobs after his announcement Wednesday, nearly all of them positive, according to NetBase, which analyzes social media commentary. On Twitter, many of the posts expressed love for Mr. Jobs, an emotion that rarely surfaces in business chatter.

Part of the reason, analysts said, is that people love Apple products in a way that they do not love other products they use everyday, whether toothbrushes, toasters or BlackBerrys. And Mr. Jobs as a chief executive is uniquely connected to Apple’s creations.

“What makes Steve Jobs particularly special is it’s as if he personally handed you an iPhone and an iPad. So to many consumers it feels like a gift from a family member,” said Jon A. Krosnick, a social psychologist at Stanford University. As a result, Apple customers feel like they have a personal connection with the man, even though the company is highly secretive and Mr. Jobs is very private.

While Mr. Jobs’s business style — he is well known for terse e-mails and browbeating tactics — has earned him critics over the years, even many of them stopped to praise him on Thursday. 

One sometimes critic of Mr. Jobs, Glenn Kelman, the chief executive of Redfin, an online real estate agency, wrote on the company’s blog: “I still remember exactly where I was, standing in a Dolores Street apartment with a cereal bowl in my hand, when he came on TV to say a competitor had no poetry. It made me think poetry had a place in business and that in turn made me think I had a place in business, too.” 

Dario Fiorillo, who went to an Apple store in San Francisco to buy an iPod while visiting from Italy, said: “Everyone I have spoken with about it is shocked and sad. We all feel like we have a relationship with Steve Jobs.”

Apple’s aura of mystery makes Mr. Jobs that much more alluring, analysts and Apple fans said. His against-all-odds personal story also makes him sympathetic and admirable. He was fired from Apple before returning and transforming it into a juggernaut, and he has continued to work through pancreatic cancer and a liver transplant. 

Ms. Koehn of Harvard said that love for corporate chiefs, while unusual in its excess, was not unprecedented.

Lee A. Iacocca, who created the Mustang before Ford fired him and then joined Chrysler and saved it from bankruptcy, had a similar following three decades ago. His story, of a victorious second act and of products that captured Americans’ hearts, bears similarities to that of Mr. Jobs.

Others compared Mr. Jobs to Thomas Edison. The outpouring of public admiration for Mr. Jobs resembles what the inventor and businessman received, said Paul Israel, director of the Thomas A. Edison Papers Project at Rutgers University. And like Mr. Jobs, Mr. Edison was a master of marketing himself and his products.

“People expected that the Edison technology, whatever it was, would be the best technology,” Mr. Israel said, “and I think that’s what Steve Jobs represents to a lot of people.”

Nick Bilton and Matt Richtel contributed reporting.



Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Re: Steve Jobs Resigns From Apple
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2011, 06:07:01 am »
NEW YORK TIMES:

August 25, 2011, 8:04 am

Steve Jobs Reshaped Industries

When Steve Jobs resigned as the chief executive of Apple on Wednesday, his note to the public and the Apple board was short and classy. The gist was this: “I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s C.E.O., I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come.”

As you can imagine, this news is rocking the world — and not just the tech world. Mr. Jobs, after all, has almost single-handedly reshaped a stunning range of industries: music, TV, movies, software, cellphones, and cloud computing. The products he’s shepherded into existence with single-minded vision read like a Top 10 list, or a Top 50 list, of the world’s most successful inventions: Macintosh. iPod. iPhone. iTunes. iMovie. iPad.

He’s done pretty well for Apple stockholders, too. Ten years ago Apple’s stock was at $9 a share; today, it’s $376. Apple is neck-and-neck with Exxon Mobil for the title of world’s most valuable company.

Most of the reactions online today read like obituaries — for Steve Jobs, if not for Apple.

Is that appropriate? Well, only Mr. Jobs’s inner circle knows how sick he actually is. (He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2004, had a liver transplant in 2009 and has had health troubles ever since.) But nobody, not even Mr. Jobs, can say for sure whether Apple can still be Apple without him at the helm.

There are three reasons that it might — and one big reason that it might not.

The good news: First, Mr. Jobs isn’t leaving Apple. He’ll remain as chairman of the Apple board. Tim Cook, who’s been Apple’s director of operations for seven years, will take over as chief executive. (He’s been acting C.E.O. since January.)

You can bet that as chairman, Mr. Jobs will still be the godfather. He’ll still be pulling plenty of strings, feeding his vision to his carefully built team, and weighing in on the company’s compass headings.

Second, the tech world doesn’t turn on a dime. Apple’s pipeline is already stuffed with at least a couple of years’ worth of Jobs-directed products. In the short term, you won’t see any difference in Apple’s output of cool, popular inventions.

Third, even if Mr. Jobs isn’t sitting at every design meeting, ripping apart or heartily embracing each idea presented to him, his tastes, methods and philosophies are deeply entrenched in the company’s blood.

In Silicon Valley, success begets success. And at this point, few companies have as high a concentration of geniuses — in technology, design and marketing — as Apple. Leaders like the design god Jonathan Ive and the operations mastermind Tim Cook won’t let the company go astray.

So it’s pretty clear that for the next few years, at least, Apple will still be Apple without Mr. Jobs as involved as he’s been for years.

But despite these positive signs, there’s one heck of a huge elephant in the room — one unavoidable reason why it’s hard to imagine Apple without Mr. Jobs steering the ship: personality.

His personality made Apple Apple. That’s why no other company has ever been able to duplicate Apple’s success. Even when Microsoft or Google or Hewlett-Packard tried to mimic Apple’s every move, run its designs through the corporate copying machine, they never succeeded. And that’s because they never had such a single, razor-focused, deeply opinionated, micromanaging, uncompromising, charismatic, persuasive, mind-blowingly visionary leader.

By maintaining so much control over even the smallest design decisions, by anticipating what we all wanted even before we did, by spotting the promise in new technologies when they were still prototypes, Steve Jobs ran Apple with the nimbleness of a start-up company, even as he built it into one of the world’s biggest enterprises.

“I believe Apple’s brightest and most innovative days are ahead of it,” Mr. Jobs wrote in his resignation letter.

That’s a wonderful endorsement. But really? Can he really mean that Apple’s days will be brighter and more innovative without him in the driver’s seat?

Tim Cook gets rave reviews as an executive and numbers guy. But is he a Jobs-style visionary? Does he have Jobs-style charisma? Does he have a Jobsian reality distortion field? Before the iTunes Store opened, would he have been able to convince the record companies to sell their music for $1 a song? In 2005, would he have had the force of personality to make Cingular redesign its voice-mail system for the iPhone’s visual voice mail? In 2009, would he have been able to cow AT&T into offering a no-contract-required, month-at-a-time data plan for the iPad?

Will he have the crazy confidence to kill off technologies he sees as dying, as Mr. Jobs has over and over again (floppy drive, dial-up modem, and, in Mac OS X Lion, even faxing)?

Does he know where the puck of public taste will come to rest two years from now? Five years from now?

There’s an awful lot of Steve Jobs in Apple, and an incredible amount of talent at its Cupertino headquarters. So no matter what happens, Apple will not slowly sink into a directionless, uncharacterizable, spread-thin blob like, say, Yahoo or Hewlett-Packard or Microsoft.

But what will happen when Mr. Jobs’s pipeline is no longer full, and when his difficult, brilliant, charismatic, future-shaping personality is no longer the face of Apple?

It’s hard to imagine that we’ll ever see another 15 years of blockbuster, culture-changing hits like the iMac, iPod, iPhone and iPad — from Apple or anyone else. And that’s really, really sad.

Thank you, Mr. Jobs, for an incredible run. The worlds of culture, media and technology have never seen anything like you.

In your new role, we wish you health, rest and happiness — and, whenever you feel up to it, the opportunity to let Apple know where the puck will come to rest.


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Offline Hypestyle

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Re: Steve Jobs Resigns From Apple
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2011, 06:58:02 am »
hopefully Mr. Jobs' health gets better and I hope he doesn't get pushed out of the company entirely; I'm sure he still has ideas for cool things...
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Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Re: Steve Jobs Resigns From Apple
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2011, 08:31:49 am »
hopefully Mr. Jobs' health gets better and I hope he doesn't get pushed out of the company entirely; I'm sure he still has ideas for cool things...
Sounds like he's not going to get better, sadly enough.  And he's certainly not getting pushed, he's walking away to handle his business before the end.  Very sad. 

Offline JLI Jesse

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Re: Steve Jobs Resigns From Apple
« Reply #5 on: August 27, 2011, 07:27:51 pm »