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Steve Jobs - (Steven Paul Jobs) is the cofounder and CEO of Apple Computer Co, founder of NeXT and sits on the board of directors for Pixar.
Steve Jobs was born on the 24th of February 1955 in San Francisco, California and one week later put up for adoption by his unmarried mother who was attending graduate school. Paul and Clara Jobs adopted and named him Steven with his biological parents later marrying and having Jobs sister, novelist Mona Simpson whom he didn’t meet until adulthood.
Jobs attended school in Cupertino, California and during high school he started visiting the Hewlett Packard Company in Palo Alto to take part in after school lectures. Jobs was soon hired and worked there during summer with Steve Wozniak, and after graduation in 1972 he enrolled at Reed College, Portland but dropped out soon after. 2 years later he returned home and started to attend meetings held by the Homebrew Computer Club with Steve Wozniak, and soon got a job in the computing field at Atari, a video game maker. At this time Jobs and Wozniak went into business together producing “Blue Boxes” which used a whistle from Cap’n Crunch breakfast cereal boxes to reproduce the 2600Hz tone used by the AT&T long distance telephone system, which allowed free long distance phone calls to be made.
Jobs saved money and traveled to India with a college friend searching for philosophical enlightenment and returned home with a shaved head and wearing traditional Indian clothing ready to resume working for Atari creating a circuit board for the game Breakout. Atari made an offer of $100 for each chip reduced in the Atari machine so Jobs knowing little about circuit boards made a deal with the knowledgeable Wozniak to split the money between them. Wozniak amazingly reduced the chip count by 50, which ended up being impossible to reproduce on a production line. Jobs then told Wozniak Atari only gave him $700 rather than the $5000 he got and gave Wozniak $350.
In 1976 Wozniak showed Jobs a computer he had designed for himself, so Jobs convinced him to help start a company selling printed circuit boards. On April 1^st 1976 Jobs and Wozniak founded Apple Computer Company and ended up creating a batch of completely assembled computers, entering them into the personal computer business. This computer was called the Apple I which was followed a year later by the Apple II which became quite a success. In May 1980 the Apple III was released with less than expected success but in the same year Apple Computer Co successfully became a publicly traded company on the stock market.
In 1983 Jobs lured John Sculley from Pepsi-Cola to become Apple’s CEO. 1984 saw the release of the Macintosh computer which became the first successful computer to have a graphical user interface. The success of the Macintosh made Apple abandon the Apple II line.
Although Jobs was a charismatic manager for Apple, he was also erratic and had a temper and in 1985 a power struggle ended with Jobs stripped of his duties by the board of directors so he Resigned and sold all but one of his shares, although he still remained chairman of Apple for sometime. After leaving Apple he founded another company called Next Computers which released an advanced feature rich computer called the Next Cube but failed due to its high cost. As with Apple Jobs new company lead the way in innovation also pushing for aesthetic perfection giving the Cube a magnesium case, but in 1993 having only sold 50,000 machines’s Next moved to software development only. Jobs and Next started off two huge future events, one being Next’s software called Interface Builder was used to write the first WorldWideWeb 1.0 program and two being Job’s work and interest with the Unix operating system at Next eventually gave Apple Computer Company a solid up to date operating system to use.
In 1996 Apple bought Next for $402 million bringing Jobs back to Apple. 1997 saw him become Apple’s interim CEO and he soon axed many projects in an effort to regain profitability. Once again his erratic nature saw many employees fearing an encounter with him, afraid of being fired on the spot which became known as “Getting Steved”. Much of Next’s software was used by Apple, with the operating system called NeXTSTEP evolving into the Mac OS X operating system.
Under Jobs control and with the release of the iMac line of computers Apple’s profits returned. Bright appealing designs for the iMac range worked well for Apple, continuing into other area’s including consumer electronics such as portable music players called iPods and digital music software called iTunes which have been a huge success.
Jobs has earned a listing in the Guinness World Records as the “Lowest Paid Chief Executive Officer” because of his yearly salary officially being $1 for tax reasons, but he is very well compensated for his efforts with lucrative executive gifts such as a $90 Million jet.
Back in 1986 Steve Jobs bought Lucasfilms computer graphics division from George Lucas for $10 million and renamed it Pixar. The company signed contracts with The Walt Disney Company to produce animated movies which Disney would co-finance and distribute. In 1995 the first movie Toy Story was released which became a huge success and was followed by other box office hits such as A Bug’s Life in 1998, Toy Story 2 in 1999, Monsters Inc in 2001, Finding Nemo in 2003 and The Incredibles in 2004. After contract problems between the two companies 2005 saw Disney purchase Pixar in an all stock transaction worth 7.4 billion which made Jobs Disney’s largest single shareholder with about 7 percent of the companies stock. Jobs also remained on the board of directors for Pixar after the deal.
Jobs married Laurene Powell on March 18th 1991 and has had three children with her. He also has a daughter with Chrisann Brennan but was never marry to her. In 1982 he bought an apartment in The San Remo and spent years renovating it before selling it 20 years later without ever living in it. Jobs second major housing purchase was in 1984 when he bought a 17,000 square foot, 14 room Spanish Colonial mansion known as Jackling House. 10 years later he decided to demolish the house and build a smaller house on the property but meet with complaints from local preservationists who began legal action to prevent the demolition, presently the house still stands. In 2004 Jobs was diagnosed with a cancerous tumor in his pancreas which was successfully removed.
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