Steve Jobs, the founder of Apple and its former CEO, died Wednesday. He was 56.
"We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today," read a statement by Apple's board of directors. "Steve's brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve. His greatest love was for his wife, Laurene, and his family. Our hearts go out to them and to all who were touched by his extraordinary gifts."
Jobs was the mastermind behind Apple, and its popular array of personal electronic devices like the iPod, iPad, and iPhone. He was instrumental in the rebirth of the company, and will be remembered as a leader and visionary in the technology world.
He started Apple in 1976 with Steve Wozniak, his childhood friend. Together, they created and marketed the world's first "personal computer," the Apple II.
He resigned as the company's CEO on August 25.
"I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple's CEO, I would be the first to let you know," Mr. Jobs said in his resignation letter. "Unfortunately, that day has come."
Jobs had been ailing for some time. According to reports, in 2004, he publicly announced that he had pancreatic cancer. In 2009, Jobs received a liver transplant.
In August, a Palo Alto Patch columnist what it was like being Jobs' neighbor, saying, "As I walked by with my son, Steve smiled and said, 'Hi Lisen.' My son thought I was the coolest mom in town when he realized The Steve Jobs knew me.
"Thanks for the coolness points, Steve."
In addition to Apple, Jobs was an early investor of the highly successful Pixar Animation Studios.