Tim Cook has tweeted about Steve Jobs on what would have been his former boss’s 66th birthday. Jobs passed away 10 years ago this year, the same period of time that Cook has now been running Apple.
“Celebrating Steve on what would have been his 66th birthday,” Cook wrote. “Especially in a year where so much kept us apart, technology brought us together in limitless ways. That’s a testament to Steve’s life and the legacy he left, which continue to inspire me every day.”
February 24, 1955: Steve Jobs is born in San Francisco. He will go on to co-found Apple and become one of the most important figures in the history of consumer technology. He’s also probably a big part of why you’re reading this website right now.
Happy birthday, Steve! Let’s take a moment to reflect on your innovation, artistry and overall brilliance on what would have been your 66th birthday celebration.
February 22, 2001: The iMac Special Edition, sporting custom Flower Power and Blue Dalmatian designs, puts a wacky face on the computer that saved Apple’s bacon at the turn of the century.
A far cry from the super-serious, aluminum-heavy industrial design that will come to define Apple, these colorfully patterned iMacs are some of the most irreverent computers Cupertino ever dreamed up. (C’mon, when was a real Dalmatian blue?)
Under the consciously tacky exterior hummed a pretty darn great iMac G3, though.
February 21, 2007: Apple comes to an agreement with Cisco over the iPhone trademark, which Cisco legally owns but Apple wants to use.
Under the agreement, both companies get to use the iPhone trademark on products throughout the world. The two businesses also dismiss outstanding lawsuits against one another, and agree to “explore opportunities for interoperability in the areas of security, and consumer and enterprise communications.”
It’s a classic bit of Steve Jobs steamrolling the opposition.
Long before Tim Cook brought his operations wizardry to Apple, Del Yocam lent his logistical prowess to Cupertino. Apple’s first chief operating officer, he helped transform the company from a chaotic, scrappy startup into a streamlined manufacturing powerhouse.
He also served as an early mentor to Steve Jobs, the young Apple co-founder who sometimes seemed out of his depth in 1979.
“When I first got to know him, he was lost,” Yocam told Cult of Mac. “He was no longer involved in the Apple II and no one wanted him around, especially management. He didn’t care about money at that time. He was like an orphan, living away from home.”
In many ways, Yocam was the proto-Tim Cook, a manufacturing and operations specialist who helped transform a dysfunctional startup into a massive, moneymaking leader of the early PC industry. He also helped take the rapidly growing company international.
Yocam deserves more credit for helping build Apple than history has so far accorded him. He was one of the main players at a crucial point in Cupertino’s history.
Yocam, now 76, recently talked with Cult of Mac about Apple’s early days. In this exclusive interview, he discusses his friendship and working relationship with Jobs, Apple’s challenging, fascinating, and sometimes malodorous co-founder.
He also reveals new details about Jobs’ tearful ouster from Apple — and how Jobs later offered him an amazing job, only to revoke it at the last moment.
February 18, 2004: Steve Jobs sends an internal memo to Apple employees revealing that the company is, for the first time in years, totally debt-free.
“Today is a historic day of sorts for our company,” he writes. It marks a big turnaround from the bad old days of the 1990s, when Apple carried more than $1 billion in debt — and faced the danger of bankruptcy.
February 16, 2000: Apple introduces the “Pismo” PowerBook, the best of its G3 laptops. In the view of many, it’s one of Apple’s best laptops ever.
The Pismo PowerBook is the first not to include SCSI or an Apple Desktop Bus connector. Instead, it utilizes USB and Apple’s Emmy award-winning FireWire. Optional AirPort wireless support, tremendous battery life and a gorgeous curvy design just make it better.
Steve Jobs didn’t have to fill in a whole lot of job applications during his life. After founding Apple Computer at 21, Jobs’ name was well enough known that he didn’t have to mail off too many resumes and cover letters. Or have reasons to send them out.
However, one of the rare applications Jobs did complete is coming up for auction. It’s a great piece of memorabilia, even if it will likely set you back a whole lot more than Steve would have ever earned in the role.
February 15, 1982: Steve Jobs appears on the front cover of Time magazine for the first time, becoming the public face of successful tech entrepreneurship.
The first of many Time covers for Jobs, the article — titled “Striking It Rich: America’s Risk Takers” — casts him as the prototypical young upstart benefiting from the burgeoning personal computing revolution. It also identifies him as part of a surge of freshly minted millionaires running their own businesses.
One of the things that always surprised me was how, compared to some of his Silicon Valley peers, Steve Jobs’ net worth during his life paled in comparison to some of his contemporaries.
When Jobs died in late 2011, his net worth was reported as being $10.2 billion. That’s an enormous amount of money, but it was a drop in the ocean next to Bill Gates’ $56 billion that year, and less than Google’s Sergey Brin and Larry Page’s $19.8 billion apiece, Michael Dell’s $14.6 billion, and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg’s $13.5 billion.
Had Jobs had the same share arrangement today, however, it would be a very different story.