It is ironic that yesterday, the day I finally recovered all of my data and operating system files on my Mac due to my second hard drive crash four days ago, and was able to do so because of the fantastic tools available to me because I use a Macintosh computer, Steve Jobs announced his resignation as CEO of Apple. I can’t say enough about what his company’s products have meant to me over the years. Read the essay Walt Mossberg wrote in All Things Digital:
Steve Jobs’s resignation as chief executive officer of Apple is the end of an extraordinary era, not just for Apple, but for the global technology industry in general. Jobs is a historic business figure whose impact was deeply felt far beyond the company’s Cupertino, Calif., headquarters, and who was widely emulated at other companies.
And now, for the first time since 1997, he won’t be the company’s chief executive.
To be very clear, Jobs, while seriously ill, is very much alive. Extremely well-informed sources at Apple say he intends to remain involved in developing major future products and strategy and intends to be an active chairman of the board, even while new CEO Tim Cook runs the company day to day.
So, this is not an obituary. But his health is reported to be up and down, and even an active chairman isn’t the same as a CEO.
CEOs resign every day, so why is this departure so meaningful?
Most people are lucky if they can change the world in one important way, but Jobs, in multiple stages of his business career, changed global technology, media and lifestyles in multiple ways on multiple occasions.
He did it because he was willing to take big risks on new ideas, and not be satisfied with small innovations fed by market research. He also insisted on high quality and had the guts to leave out features others found essential and to kill technologies, like the floppy drive and the removable battery, he decided were no longer needed. And he has been a brilliant marketer, personally passionate about his products.
More here from The Wall Street Journal.