How Will You Remember Steve Jobs?

Steve Jobs stands beneath a photograph of him and Apple-co founder Steve Wozniak in January 2010 at the launch of Apple's iPad. Photo by Kimberly White, Reuters

Steve Jobs stands beneath a photo of him and Steve Wozniak at the iPad launch in January 2010. Photo by Kimberly White, Reuters

Steve Jobs was one of very few people who could be called a legend in his own time. The college dropout co-founded Apple in 1976 and grew it into the most valuable company in the world, inspiring countless entrepreneurs along the way.

There are sure to be a litany of obituaries and stories about Jobs in the coming days, but we want to know what Jobs meant to you. Please share your thoughts and memories below.


“Melinda and I extend our sincere condolences to Steve Jobs’ family & friends. The world rarely sees someone who made such a profound impact.” – Tweet from Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft (@BillGates)

“Steve, thank you for being a mentor and a friend. Thanks for showing that what you build can change the world. I will miss you.” – Facebook update from Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder

Blog post: Esther Dyson: My iXperiences with Steve Jobs

Reuters news story: Bill Gates: Knowing Jobs Was “Insanely Great” Honor

“Once in a rare while, somebody comes along who doesnt just raise the bar, they create an entirely new standard of measurement. #RIPSteveJobs” – Dick Costolo, CEO of Twitter (@dickc)

“Steve Jobs and God are creating new Universes together in heaven.” – Tweet from Shervin Pishevar, managing director at Menlo Ventures (@shervin)

Reuters live blog: World Mourns Steve Jobs

Reuters slideshow: 22 Photos of Steve Jobs Through the Years

“Thank you Steve Jobs. My passion and career started with one of 1st Apple IIs in 1977 writing realtime D/A systems. You changed my life.” – Tweet from George Zachary, partner at Charles River Ventures (@georgezachary)

“Time stopped today for a bit. Steve Jobs made all of us realize what genius is. Last person like that was Albert Einstein. Thank you Steve!” – Tweet from Bilal Zuberi, principal at General Catalyst Partners (@bznotes)

“A true role model for all entrepreneurs has died too young. Steve Jobs pioneered an era that will long be associated with his name.” – Tweet from Alan Patricof, founder and managing director of Greycroft Partners (@alanjpatricof)

Bob Metcalfe, co-inventor of Ethernet and general partner at Polaris Ventures, shares his thoughts about Steve Jobs in an email to CNET.

“I am in mourning. I haven’t felt this way since I heard JFK died.” – Tweet from Tim Draper, co-founder and managing director of Draper Fisher Jurvetson (@timdraper)

“Steve Jobs RIP. Doubt we will see an entrepreneur like him again for a long time.” – Tweet from Chip Hazard, General Partner at Flybridge Capital (@chazard)

“Has anyone changed the world more than Steve Jobs in the last 25 years? The world lost one of its best today.” – Tweet from Greg Gottesman, managing director at Madrona Venture Group (@greggottesman)

“RIP Steve. Knew this day was coming but it really hit hard. Remembering using an Apple II in middle school and NeXT machines in college.” – Tweet from Ted Maidenberg, partner at U.S. Venture Partners (@maidenberg)

“Speechless with sadness. Rest in peace Steve. You were the greatest.” – Tweet from Chi-Hua Chien, Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (@chchien)

“I counted 9 rainbows on my drive up and down 280 today. Nature’s salute to Steve Jobs.” – Tweet from Manu Kumar of K9 Ventures (@manukumar)

“I love technology because it is transformative and Steve Jobs was the very embodiment of that power to improve the world around us.” – Tweet from David Hornik, general partner at August Capital (@davidhornik)

Column: Walt Mossberg looks back on his time with Steve Jobs.

Video: Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford Commencement Address.


“Death is very likely the best invention of life. All pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure, these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important.” (Stanford commencement speech, 2005)


  • “His ability to always come around and figure out where that next bet should be has been phenomenal,” Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates on Jobs in 2007.

  • “I think it’s brought the world a lot closer together, and will continue to do that. There are downsides to everything; there are unintended consequences to everything. The most corrosive piece of technology that I’ve ever seen is called television — but then, again, television, at its best, is magnificent.” (Steve Jobs, Rolling Stone, 2003)

  • “We think the Mac will sell zillions, but we didn’t build the Mac for anybody else. We built it for ourselves. We were the group of people who were going to judge whether it was great or not. We weren’t going to go out and do market research. We just wanted to build the best thing we could build.” (Steve Jobs, Playboy, 1985)

  • “Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things. And the reason they were able to do that was that they’ve had more experiences or they have thought more about their experiences than other people.” (Steve Jobs, Wired, 1996)

  • “That’s been one of my mantras — focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.” (Steve Jobs, BusinessWeek, 1998)

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  • “When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.” (Steve Jobs, Stanford commencement, 2005)

  • I begged my parents for an Apple IIc when I was a kid. My dad worked extra shifts for months to buy it. It changed my life. I was inspired to draw a new design for a Macintosh and sent it to Steve Jobs when I was 12. Years later at D Conference I got to ask Steve a question on stage. I cherish the moment I made him laugh by saying I had sent him a letter with a new Mac design when I was 12 and that I was still waiting for his reply. I got to shake his hand at the iPad launch and I’m glad I got to say Thank you. We’d see him occasionally in downtown Palo Alto just living life normally. These images and short experiences come up as I reflect tonight. Steve Jobs changed so much. But more importantly he inspired whole new generations of entrepreneurs. And for that I am most thankful. His legacy will live on forever. -@Shervin

  • Memories of Steve Jobs, By David Chao, Co-founder and General Partner, DCM
    1988. I was 22, 8 months out of college. I quit my first job and went to work for Apple. Tired of my sales job I had prior, I wanted to change the world and follow Steve’s vision of “personal computing for everyone.”  Steve was just fired by his Board. Over the next few years, I could feel the culture he built wither away.  Apple kept on building products that focused less and less on attention and by the end of my tenure, Apple was making PCs that looked and felt like a PC. It was through the Yin that I felt his Yang.
    7 years later, I finally get to meet and feel the Yang in person. He was running Next Computers. I was a young pup consultant who had to tell him his baby was ugly.  My elder colleagues made sure I spoke first so he wouldn’t be offended. After he heard my story, he stood up and did his pitch for Next O/S. Just like he always did when he introduced the Macintosh, iMac, iPod, iPhone, and iPad – he electrified the crowd with his vision and enthusiasm. For a moment, I thought every fact I collected and put together over the last 2 months were from Neverneverland. Steve then walked over and thanked me for doing a good job and he said he understood it was time to move on.
    Many have seen the glorious Steve of late. But in that moment, I saw a man at the bottom of his career. But yet I felt his Yang.  He had so much fire in him that it was clear that he was going to make his vision happen.  Yesterday, my 12 year old son at school received his iPad for class work. It was donated by Steve and his family.  It took him another 15 years, but he did it.  And he did it with style and passion that only the few possess. I am honored that I got to feel him in my lifetime in so many ways. May you rest in peace.

  • In 2002 I had just taken over macHOME magazine and was invited to the grand opening of the Apple retail store in SOHO. Steve was greeting the invitees at the head of the stairs. I had never meet Steve before and when I was introduced, he grunted and gave me a “trade press is vermin” look of dismissal and moved on to the next person. That was a classic Steve moment that I’m sure is shared by many people. I still smile thinking about that.

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