Steve Jobs dies at the age of 56 - Leaves the World "iSad"
SIR STEVE JOBS - One of the GREATEST Engineer ever touched so many lives that people around the world turned "iSad" on Wednesday, at the news of his death, pausing to share thoughts about the charismatic innovator who shaped modern culture.
His death after a years-long battle with pancreatic cancer sparked an immediate outpouring of tributes as world leaders, business rivals and fans alike lamented the tragedy of his premature passing and celebrated his monumental achievements.
At the San Francisco Apple Store in Union Square, a crowd started forming. A few dabbed their eyes. Others huddled in small groups around their iPhones reading the details of Jobs' passing.
Scott Robbins, 34, a barber from San Francisco and an Apple fan for nearly 20 years, said he came as soon as he heard the news.
"To some people, this is like Elvis Presley or John Lennon it's a change in our times,'' Robbins said. "It's the end of an era, of what we've known Apple to be. It's like the end of the innovators.''
Robbins said Jobs' influence extended beyond the iPhone he now carries and the Mac products he has faithfully bought for years. He was a symbol of the technology revolution who opened the eyes of a generation to the possibilities of the digital computing.
But the store wasn't consumed by sadness. Inside, peppy music played and customers watched YouTube videos on iPhones. That they were consuming technology in ways that would have been unimaginable without Jobs may have been lost on many of them.
In China, one of the company's fastest growing markets, Henry Men Youngfan said he was shocked by the news that his hero had died.
The 27-year-old doctoral student in Beijing bought his first Apple product in 2006 and traveled by train to Hong Kong in September just to attend the opening of the company's first store there.
When he entered graduate school at Peking University's college of engineering, Men said, ``My teachers asked me what kind of person I wanted to be and I told them I wanted to be like Steve.''
Li Zilong, who was listening to his iPod in front of a Beijing Apple store, worried that Apple's innovation died along with its co-founder.
"Jobs was a legendary figure; every company needs a spiritual leader,'' said the 20-year-old university student. "Without Jobs, I don't know if Apple can give us more classic products, like the iPhone 4.''
Competitors who watched as Apple's sales and its stock price took off over the past decade posted messages of admiration:
"Steve Jobs was a great visionary and a respected competitor,'' said Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie, co-CEOs of Blackberry-maker Research in Motion.
"Today the world lost a visionary leader, the technology industry lost an iconic legend and I lost a friend and fellow founder,'' said Dell Inc. founder and CEO Michael Dell.
"For those of us lucky enough to get to work with Steve, it's been an insanely great honor. I will miss Steve immensely,'' said Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates.
Here is a lowdown of Steve Jobs career and life--
NAME: Steven Paul Jobs
BORN: Feb. 24, 1955, in San Francisco
DIED: Wednesday at 56. Apple announced his death without giving a specific cause.
EDUCATION: Graduated from high school in 1972 and enrolled in Reed College in Portland, Oregon, but dropped out after six months.
FAMILY: Wife, Laurene Powell; their three children, Reed Paul, Erin Sienna and Eve; plus daughter, Lisa Brennan-Jobs, from different relationship.
CAREER: Worked for video game maker Atari before founding Apple with Steve Wozniak in 1976 in Jobs' garage. Launched the Mac in 1984. But a year later, Jobs was pushed out as Apple's chairman. He returned to advise the company in 1996. After a stint as interim CEO, he took the helm of Apple Inc. permanently in 2000 and oversaw the launch of the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad.
Took third medical leave in January 2011 and resigned as CEO in August. Elected Apple chairman.