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Of all the news items we report here at MacLife.com, writing about the death of Apple co-founder Jobs at age 56 is certainly the one we’ve dreaded the most. By now, co-workers, celebrities, politicians, journalists and even regular folks who simply love Apple products have all chimed in on the news. We woke up this morning in a world with one less visionary -- particularly difficult when there are so few of them to begin with. Here’s a recap of related news and events for Thursday, October 6.
Ironically, many of us received the news via a push notification from the Associated Press on the very devices Steve Jobs helped to create. The news quickly spread throughout the internet, with Twitter virtually exploding as millions reacted to the announcement. As the flags flew at half mast on Apple’s Cupertino campus and the light behind the company’s iconic logo dimmed at retail stores across the world, the front page of the company’s website confirmed the news none of us wanted to hear.
In the hours following the sad news, reactions began to pour in from all over the globe, including an official statement from Jobs’ family as well as CEO Tim Cook’s letter to Apple employees, which the company has posted online for all to read. But it was particularly emotional to read the thoughts of those whose lives he touched -- and sometimes even butted heads with -- which are still being compiled by MacRumors.
Some of our favorites include Microsoft founder Bill Gates, Dell founder Michael Dell, Google co-founder Larry Page and even director George Lucas, the man who sold Pixar to Jobs so many years ago. And whether you like his political views or not, President Barack Obama perhaps summed it up the best on the official White House blog.
“Michelle and I are saddened to learn of the passing of Steve Jobs,” President Obama wrote Wednesday evening. “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.”
In the early days of Apple, Steve Jobs shared the spotlight with co-founder Steve Wozniak, the technology brains behind the company’s original products such as the Apple II. Woz was kind enough to share some tearful memories with the Associated Press on his days with Jobs, and his thoughts on how his friend and onetime ally changed both of their lives -- as well as the world around them.
Many of us have been eagerly awaiting the release of author Walter Isaacson’s official biography on Steve Jobs, which was first scheduled for early 2012 and more recently pushed up to November 21. According to AllThingsD, publisher Simon & Schuster has moved the date up even earlier, to an October 24 release -- less than three weeks from now. Not surprisingly, the title is now topping the bestseller list on both Amazon and iTunes. We definitely can’t wait to get ours!
Newer Apple fans may not remember the Emmy-nominated 1999 television movie Pirates of Silicon Valley, a docu-drama starring Noah Wyle as Steve Jobs and his early trials and tribulations with arch nemesis Anthony Michael Hall as Microsoft founder Bill Gates. According to The Hollywood Reporter, TNT will be broadcasting the movie as a tribute to Jobs twice tonight -- first at 8pm, with an encore presentation following at 10pm (both times are EST/PST). If you haven’t seen it before, be sure to check it out -- it’s also available on DVD.
We’re all feeling rather blue about the loss of Steve Jobs, which is what makes these newly released images from former Apple employee Mike Mata absolutely priceless. The creator of Delicious Library posted a handful of images to his Facebook page which show the former CEO doing exactly what the rest of us do the first time we load up PhotoBooth: Being silly and having a good time with our Mac (and now, iPad 2). These images are from 2005, when Jobs first got a chance to test drive the software prior to its release.
Few events in the world warrant the publishing world to screech “Stop the presses!” -- but the death of Steve Jobs is most certainly one of them. To commemorate the life of the Apple co-founder, TIME magazine is releasing a special issue on newsstands and tablet devices tomorrow, Friday, October 7, which includes a six-page essay by official biographer Walter Isaacson. The essay concludes with a particularly touching finale:
A few weeks ago, I visited Jobs for the last time in his Palo Alto, Calif., home. He had moved to a downstairs bedroom because he was too weak to go up and down stairs. He was curled up in some pain, but his mind was still sharp and his humor vibrant. We talked about his childhood, and he gave me some pictures of his father and family to use in my biography. As a writer, I was used to being detached, but I was hit by a wave of sadness as I tried to say goodbye. In order to mask my emotion, I asked the one question that was still puzzling me: Why had he been so eager, during close to 50 interviews and conversations over the course of two years, to open up so much for a book when he was usually so private? “I wanted my kids to know me,” he said. “I wasn’t always there for them, and I wanted them to know why and to understand what I did.”
The latest issue will be available late Thursday on TIME’s website.
Looking back on Tuesday’s “Let’s talk iPhone” media event, it’s hard not to notice the curiously empty reserved seat at the end of the front row occupied by Apple executives, which the camera panned across several times. Or the relatively somber tone from CEO Tim Cook and usually animated VP of worldwide product marketing Phil Schiller that may have contributed to some users’ disappointment with the iPhone 4S announcement.
After last night’s bombshell news, it seems obvious now who that empty seat might have been intended for: Former CEO Steve Jobs. Whether it was symbolic or the other Apple executives were optimistic that Jobs might attend, we may never know.
As a dedicated Apple user for more than 17 years, I’ll never forget the joy of using my first Mac (and I have owned many since!), holding my first iPod or iPad (ditto), and most of all, seeing the sheer joy on Steve Jobs’ face that January morning in 2007 as he shared with us his greatest creation to date, the iPhone. Walking out of my local AT&T store on launch day with it held in my fat little fingers -- and even now, on the eve of preordering an iPhone 4S -- I am able to share in Jobs’ childlike glee from that day. That’s the Steve Jobs I will always remember.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter
(Images courtesy of Apple and Cult of Mac)