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Steve Jobs: A genius departs

Oct 06, 2011, 14:01 (3 Talkback[s])

"IT WAS always going to be a hard act to follow. On October 4th Apple staged a press conference to launch its latest iPhone and other gadgets. Tim Cook, the computing giant's new chief executive, and his colleagues did a perfectly competent job of presenting its latest wares. But it was inevitable that comparisons would be drawn between Mr Cook's understated approach on stage and that of Steve Jobs, his predecessor, whose sense of showmanship had turned so many Apple product launches into quasi-religious experiences. The news the following day that Mr Jobs had finally died following a long battle with cancer turned the feeling of disappointment into one of deep sadness.

"Many technologists have been hailed as visionaries. If anyone deserves that title it was Mr Jobs. Back in the 1970s, the notion that computers might soon become ubiquitous seemed fanciful. In those days of green-on-black displays, when floppy discs were still floppy, he was among the first to appreciate the potential that lay in the idea of selling computers to ordinary people. More recently, under his guidance, Apple went from being a company on the brink of bankruptcy to a firm that has reshaped entire industries and brought rivals to their knees. Rarely in corporate history has a transformation been so swift. Along the way Mr Jobs also co-founded Pixar, an animation company, and became Disney's biggest shareholder."

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