Oct 9 2011
Remembering Steve Jobs

This past week the computer world lost a legend when Steve Jobs passed away on October 5th, 2011. Jobs was the definition of a self-made success, starting from building computers without even a casing in his garage alongside Steve Wozniak to controlling one of the early computer industry leaders. Than he was booted from the company in 1985, and Apple began to slide into ruin. Jobs returned in 1996, however, and amazingly helmed the company through its darkest hours to once again turn it into a technological leader, this time not just in standard computing but with the help of music players like the iPod, which transformed into a small computer in its own right as time moved on.

For myself, the Apple computer I have the most nostalgic memories of was the Apple ][ (or the Apple II). In the late 80's these things reigned supreme in every grade school in my area. I'm sure many of us battled Indians, Bears, rivers, and nature itself in The Oregon Trail. I also remember playing lots of Word Crunchers and Number Crunchers, made popular by The Minnesota Educational Computing Consortium. I also had a friend whose parents had purchased an Apple ][, and enjoyed games like Zork, Pac-Man, and Miner 2049er. Many of these retro classics you can still enjoy today via web browser at www.virtualapple.org.

With the advent of the iPod, iPad, and iOS, games once again were a central part of Apple products. Angry Birds has taken the world by storm, and companies such as Capcom, Square-Enix, Atari, and Namco have all released some of their older titles on iOS. There's even game library apps for systems like the Commodore 64 and Turbografx-16. While sometimes not obvious, games were always an important part to Apple as a company, something that Steve Jobs realized.

I will always remember Steve Jobs as an innovator, someone that knew how to build a company and bring in the consumers. He leaves in his wake an incredible legacy, helping create the modern computers we all use today, and giving us some great memories of using that technology for learning as well as entertainment.


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