February 24, 1955 – October 5, 2011
Steve Jobs has died at 56 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. Jobs had battled cancer in 2004 and underwent a liver transplant in 2009 after taking a leave of absence for unspecified health problems. He took another leave of absence in January -- his third since his health problems began -- and officially resigned in August.
Jobs started Apple with a high school friend in a Silicon Valley garage in 1976, was forced out a decade later and returned in 1997 to rescue the company. During his second stint, it grew into the most valuable technology company in the world.
Cultivating Apple's countercultural sensibility and a minimalist design ethic, Jobs rolled out one sensational product after another, even in the face of the late-2000s recession and his own failing health.
He also founded NeXT Computer in 1985 and a year later bought Graphics Group from the Star Wars director, George Lucas. The company, which Jobs renamed Pixar, produced extremely expensive computer animation hardware which was used by a number of film makers, including Disney.
Jobs switched the emphasis away from computer manufacturing and began producing computer animated feature films. The breakthrough came in 1995 with the film Toy Story, which went on to gross more than $350 million worldwide, and was followed by other successes including A Bug's Life, Finding Nemo and Monsters Inc.
“Steve Jobs was the greatest inventor since Thomas Edison. He put the world at our fingertips.”