A Tribute to Steve Jobs on his Birthday!


[Arun’s Note: This post has been sent to us by one of our guest authors – Ashish Chowdhary – who has written a wonderful tribute to Steve Jobs. It’s a bit longish than our average post, but surely a must read.]

Time is never right for your ideas; you have to make it right”.

Steve Jobs truly exemplified the Silicon Valley entrepreneur. Steve Jobs, who lived 56 years of his life doing what he loved, turned a garage based computer venture into the most-valued company by market value. His life was tumultuous since his birth when he was born to unwed couple, put up for adoption, dropped out of college, having a baby from an unwed woman, getting fired from a company he himself started, fighting with companies copying his innovations, getting diagnosed with cancer and finally dying at an young age.

Steve’s early experience with LSD drug is believed to have been the reason for his uncanny knack and his altered thinking process. He had no formal technical education, nor any real business experience, still he succeeded. It was only because he appreciated technology’s elegance and believed that computers could be more than hobbyist’s toys or corporation’s workhouse. This belief gave IBM a run-for-its-money.



Steve Jobs’ Life’s Journey

Steve flaunted beltless blue denim and black turtle-neck t-shirt in public appearances. He was meticulous when it came to product details, fastidious in picking people who would work with him, stealthy when it came to his private life and his innovations, relentless when it came to making things happen on time and perfectionist when it came to presentations and product launches.

Jobs’ first product was the Apple I – a computer without a case, keyboard or monitor. Then Apple II arrived – the first mass-market product by Apple and one of the first successful personal computers. Jobs always believed that computers are not just for engineers, enthusiasts, or corporations. The product was a hit and it got Jobs featured on Time magazine’s cover page.

Jobs then came up with Lisa with GUI, icons, windows and mouse – a failure due to exorbitant price.

Macintosh was the first commercially successful PC to have GUI. Life took a turn and Steve Jobs was fired from Apple. He then started NeXT and Pixar Inc. He persuaded Apple’s then CEO to acquire NeXT and appoint him as the Chief Adviser. This was his return to Apple and then he never looked back. He launched iTunes that made buying music a simple process. He went on to launch world’s highest selling devices like iMacs, iPods, iPhones, and iPads. Pixar was sold to Walt Disney.

Apple Products that Revolutionized the Industries

Success is not what you think you’ve achieved, it is what people believe they have achieved because of you. Apple’s products gave new lives to 6 different industries – personal computing, animated movies, music phones, tablet computing, digital publishing and gaming industry – not to mention the countless software development firms that thrive because of Apple. Jobs’ penchant for perfection and genius revolutionized the way people communicate. His products also had a deep impact on the automobile industry as iPods superseded the CDs.

Steve Jobs – An Inscrutable American

Steve Jobs was an enigma, the more you tried to understand him, the more you got lost. He was a normal guy with a normal house and an open doorway. He did not like the ostentatious display of his wealth. He obscured away from his fight with pancreatic cancer.

Even with more than 40 interviews with Jobs, Walter Isaacson, who wrote the biography “Steve Jobs”, was oblivious of some facts about Steve Jobs. Jobs was fine with the freewheeling hacker culture yet all his products were made under complete secrecy. Hiding his innovations was as important to Steve as was launching the product.

Jobs’ favourite car Mercedes Benz SL55 AMG Silver had license plate without number. Isaacson couldn’t know the reason for this.


Adore him with acronyms like an inventor, entrepreneur, visionary, charismatic leader, pioneer, original thinker, perfectionist and person with an uncanny knack or crib about him by adjectives like reality distortion field, brash, mercurial, temperamental and tearing people down. But for

me, he is the Chief Esthetic Officer at Apple who consistently delivered cutting-edge products with simple and elegant designs.

Three Stories of his Life – Steve Jobs’ Stanford Commencement Speech in 2005

Touted as one of the finest commencement speeches ever delivered, Steve Jobs narrated three stories of his life at Stanford University in 2005.

The first story was about connecting the dots. A college drop-out, Steve stayed in the college without taking any classes and instead returned empty coke bottles to earn a living. Dropping out was one of the best decisions he ever made as that gave him the time and liberty to learn calligraphy that would later get imbued in designing the typography in Macintosh computer.

The second story was about love and loss. Jobs was fired from the company he himself started and then he went on to start two companies named NeXT and Pixar, that created world’s first computer animated feature film, Toy Story. He fell in love with a girl named Laurene who later became his wife. He always loved what he did and never settled till he found what he really loved to do.

His third story was about death. Steve was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and had a biopsy. He later had the surgery to cure cancer. He believed that death is the destination that we all share and no one has ever escaped it.

Present like Steve Jobs – Presentation Tips

Be it the launch of a new Apple product, or a keynote speech, or even an extempore about business, technology, the arts or media, Steve Jobs electrified the audience with his oratory and

style. Jobs did not just communicate information in his presentation; he captivated the audience by telling a story, painting a picture and telling numbers that made sense. Anyone can learn the secret of extraordinary and cool presentations made by Steve Jobs by following the below steps:

  • Create a story – Set the theme and provide outline
  • Answer one question that matters the most
  • Share the vision
  • Make numbers and statistics meaningful
  • Identify one unforgettable moment and build on it
  • Build visually engaging slides
  • Make the transition between a starting point and an ending point clear
  • Rehearse, rehearse and rehearse

Steve Jobs’ Idol

When asked by Time Magazine about his choice for the Person of the Century in 1999, Steve Jobs replied, “Mohandas Gandhi (father of India’s freedom struggle) is my choice for the Person of the Century because he showed us the way out of the destructive side of our human nature.” He further added, “Gandhi demonstrated that we can force change and justice through moral acts of aggression instead of physical acts of aggression. Never has our species needed this wisdom more.”

Jobs sported round glasses like Mahatma Gandhi’s and also used Gandhi’s image in his iconic

“Think Different” campaign.

Memorable Quotes by Apple’s Founder Steve Jobs

When talking about his ambition, Jobs never minced his words,

We’re here to put a dent in the universe. Or else, whey even be here?” On putting a ding in the universe, he said, “…the ones who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.

While other companies did market research before launching their products, Jobs believed,

It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.

He further mentioned,

You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.

On complacency, he said,

I think if you do something and it turns out pretty good, then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long. Just figure out what’s next.

He was known to work relentlessly to achieve perfection. His thoughts on contentment reflect this ideology:

Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me … Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful… that’s what matters to me.”

For him beauty mattered more than novelty when he said,

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.

He was a genius in the disguise of a salesman, who not only sold his products but compelled people to work for him. Perhaps, the best sales line ever made in the history of mankind was when he recruited John Sculley, then President of PepsiCo, to be the CEO of Apple Inc.

Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling sugared water or do you want a chance to change the world?”

Even when he was fired from Apple Inc., he later realized,

Getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again.

Steve Jobs had equally remarkable thoughts on life and death. On life, he said,

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.

On death he mentioned,

Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.”

What the World Leaders Say on Steve Jobs’ Death

Steve Jobs’ death was mourned by great leaders of the world. His long-time rival and friend and Microsoft’s founder, Bill Gates said,

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.

US President Barack Obama said,

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.” He further added, “Jobs was brave enough to think differently, bold enough to believe he could change the world, and talented enough to do it.

Shashi Tharoor, Indian politician tweeted,

Three Apples changed the world, 1st one seduced Eve, 2nd fell on Newton and the third was offered to the World half-bitten by Steve Jobs”.

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg said,

Thanks for showing that what you build can change the world.

Steve Jobs was certainly a quintessential tech geek who understood technology and considered it as the only means that can let us touch people we might not otherwise. He was an enchanting orator during the launch of Apple products and a peevish wailer when things didn’t go his way.

Embarking on a new journey to heaven, he uttered “Oh wow. Oh wow. Oh wow.” These were Steve Jobs’ last words. We also wish for all our reader this “Wow” moment every time they do something innovative, because this is what defined this legend.

Stay hungry, stay foolish!!

  1. Naweed says

    Steve Jobs was indeed brilliant in his life and works, and without doubt, will be remembered every year on the same lines as this tribute published here.

    However, while heaping praise on Apple’s visionary long after his death, let’s not forget the ill-treatment of the workers at Foxconn who make it possible for us to possess Apple’s stunning gadgets. Some of them don’t even get to see the finished products!

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