The business and culture of our digital lives,
from the L.A. Times

Category: Steve Jobs

Apple fans camp out to buy the iPhone 4S


Apple fans camped out overnight and queued up for hours to snag the iPhone 4S, which went on sale in brick-and-mortar stores slightly more than a week after the death of company co-founder Steve Jobs.

The latest iPhone model, which rolled out in seven countries, is poised to outstrip last year’s launch of the iPhone 4, which sold more than 1.7 million handsets in its first weekend.

On Friday morning, more than 200 people waited outside the Apple store at the Grove shopping center in Los Angeles' Fairfax district as employees doled out coffee, bottles of water and umbrellas to shield against the sun.

“My friends and I were so excited about the phone, we got here at midnight,” said real estate agent Tony Wu, 27, who had dozed in a lawn chair overnight before getting ushered into the store at 9 a.m. “It was ridiculous. We ended up being, like, 30th in line.”

By 8 a.m., when the store first opened its doors to those standing or sitting outside, the line had snaked past the American Girl Place shop a few doors down towards the mall's parking garage.

Some, like April Rankin of Miracle Mile, had the foresight to tote along entertainment -- in her case, a book. The 32-year-old stylist had come to replace her 2-year-old iPhone 3GS, and sat huddled on the sidewalk underneath a blue-and-beige umbrella.

"I was completely not expecting this big of a crowd," she said, after getting in line at 7:30 a.m. "At this point though, I've already been waiting for over three hours, so I'm going to stick it out until I get it."

For those with stamina, the payoff was sweet. Jerry Osaka of Los Angeles said he played hooky from his job as a computer technician to stand outside the Apple store at 7 a.m. sharp.

After getting his hands on a white iPhone 4S, the 43-year-old held his shopping bag aloft and grinned: "Success! Can't wait to test it out."


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Photo: Douglas Rosen takes a nap while waiting for the Apple store in Pasadena to open. Rosen arrived at 2 a.m. Friday as people started forming long lines outside the store to get the iPhone 4S. Credit: Irfan Khan/Los Angeles Times

Steve Jobs buried in Alta Mesa among other technologists

Apple co-founder Steve Jobs was buried on Friday in Alta Mesa in a memorial park shared by some pioneering technologists he admired, according to Forbes.

Forbes, citing Jobs' death certificate released Monday, reported that the Alta Mesa Memorial Park in Palo Alto where Jobs was laid to rest Friday is also the burial place of Hewlett-Packard's David Packard, whose partner and co-founder William Hewlett gave Jobs his first summer job.

As a 12- or 13-year-old boy, Jobs later recalled, he telephoned Hewlett to ask about a part missing from a device he was building. After chatting with Jobs, Hewlett offered him a summer job on an HP assembly line, which Jobs likened to being "in heaven."

Also buried at the park: country musician Ernie Ford, Grateful Dead member Ronald McKernan and engineer Lewis Terman, a mentor of Packard and Hewlett, according to website Find-A-Grave.

According to the death certificate, Jobs suffered from a "metastic pancreas neuroendocrine tumor" and died of respiratory arrest Oct. 5 at 3 p.m. His occupation was listed as "entrepreneur."


Steve Jobs' black turtleneck reportedly explained in biography

Stephen Colbert drops sarcasm, honors Steve Jobs

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--Shan Li

Photo: A vendor holds an iPhone 4 cover with an image of the late Apple founder Steve Jobs, on sale in Shenzhen, in southern China's Guangdong province, on Tuesday. Credit: AFP/Getty Images



Steve Jobs' black turtleneck reportedly explained in biography

Steve Jobs tribute

Steve Jobs is known for many things -- the Apple II, the Macintosh, Pixar, the iMac, iTunes, iPod, iPhone and iPad.

He is also known for his signature black turtleneck, Levi's jeans and gray New Balance sneakers.

But just how Jobs arrived at that look after wearing neckties, bowties, vests and jeans covered in patches, isn't as known.

That will change, however, with the release of Walter Isaacson's highly anticipated authorized biography on the Apple co-founder, titled simply "Steve Jobs."

The book -- the product of more than two years' worth of interviews with Jobs' family, friends, colleagues and rivals -- includes details on how Jobs' look came about. That passage on was published Tuesday by the website Gawker in an excerpt from Isaacson's book.

The book also includes interviews that took place just weeks before Jobs' death Oct. 5.

From Issacson's book, as reported by Gawker:

On a trip to Japan in the early 1980s, Jobs asked Sony's chairman Akio Morita why everyone in the company's factories wore uniforms. He told Jobs that after the war, no one had any clothes, and companies like Sony had to give their workers something to wear each day. Over the years, the uniforms developed their own signatures styles, especially at companies such as Sony, and it became a way of bonding workers to the company. "I decided that I wanted that type of bonding for Apple," Jobs recalled.

Sony, with its appreciation for style, had gotten the famous designer Issey Miyake to create its uniform. It was a jacket made of rip-stop nylon with sleeves that could unzip to make it a vest. So Jobs called Issey Miyake and asked him to design a vest for Apple, Jobs recalled, "I came back with some samples and told everyone it would great if we would all wear these vests. Oh man, did I get booed off the stage. Everybody hated the idea."

In the process, however, he became friends with Miyake and would visit him regularly. He also came to like the idea of having a uniform for himself, both because of its daily convenience (the rationale he claimed) and its ability to convey a signature style. "So I asked Issey to make me some of his black turtlenecks that I liked, and he made me like a hundred of them." Jobs noticed my surprise when he told this story, so he showed them stacked up in the closet. "That's what I wear," he said. "I have enough to last for the rest of my life."

Isaacson's biography on Jobs arrives in stores Oct. 24.


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Photo: Flowers, apples and notes paying tribute to Steve Jobs were placed outside of an Apple store in Chicago on Oct. 6, 2011, a day after Jobs died at the age of 56. Credit: Nam Y. Huh / Associated Press

Steve Jobs reportedly died of respiratory arrest, tumor [Updated]

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs died from respiratory arrest and a pancreatic tumor, according to his death certificate released Monday.

The Apple co-founder, chairman and former chief executive died Wednesday, Oct. 5, around 3 p.m. in his Palo Alto home, the certificate noted.

Apple and his family announced Jobs' death Oct. 5 but did not provide any details about the time, place or the cause.

The death certificate, obtained by Bloomberg News from the Santa Clara County Public Health Department in San Jose, listed Jobs' occupation as "entrepreneur." In his death, Jobs has been described as an icon, the modern-day equivalent of Thomas Edison or Henry Ford and a person who changed technology and American culture.

A day before Jobs' death, Apple's executive team and CEO Tim Cook introduced the new iPhone 4S smartphone. On Friday the iPhone 4S was made available for preorder and sold more than 1 million units in less than 24 hours.

In an e-mail first reported by the website 9to5mac, Cook told Apple employees Monday that a celebration of Jobs' life would take place at Apple's Cupertino, Calif., headquarters Oct. 19.


Like many of you, I have experienced the saddest days of my lifetime and shed many tears during the past week. But I've found some comfort in the extraordinary number of tributes and condolences from people all over the world who were touched by Steve and his genius. And I've found comfort in both telling and listening to stories about Steve. 

Although many of our hearts are still heavy, we are planning a celebration of his life for Apple employees to take time to remember the incredible things Steve achieved in his life and the many ways he made our world a better place. The celebration will be held on Wednesday, October 19, at 10am in the outdoor amphitheater on the Infinite Loop campus. We'll have more details on AppleWeb closer to the date, including arrangements for employees outside of Cupertino. 

I look forward to seeing you there. 


Cook took over from Jobs as CEO Aug. 24 after Jobs resigned his post. Jobs was named chairman of Apple's board of directors after stepping down as CEO.

Previously, Cook had been Apple's chief operating officer, but he had been running the day-to-day operations at Apple since January, when Jobs began what would be his final medical leave from the company.

On two previous occasions, Jobs took a leave of absence from Apple and Cook filled in running the company for him. The first time was in 2003 after Jobs was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. The second took place in 2009, when Jobs underwent a liver transplant.

[Updated 5:00 p.m.: The Santa Clara County Public Health Department said they were not making Jobs' death certificate available unless those requesting it would do so in person -- something I wasn't able to do today from Los Angeles.

However, more details from the death certificate were reported later on Monday by Bloomberg. The certificate said that no autopsy was performed on Jobs' body and that he was buried at a non-denominational cemetery in Santa Clara County on Oct. 7. The name of the person who filled out Jobs' death certificate was redacted, the report said.

The Associated Press reported that the death certificate also said that Jobs' cancerous pancreatic tumor had "spread to other organs".]


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Photo: Apple CEO Steve Jobs introduces the iPhone 4 at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco last year. Credit: Ryan Anson / AFP/Getty Images

Apple reports more than 1 million iPhone 4S orders in 24 hours

Apple iPhone 4S

More than 1 million people ordered the iPhone 4S in the first 24 hours the smartphone was on sale, Apple announced Monday.

Such solid numbers -- about as good a start as for any new gadget -- might alleviate some investor and pundit fears that the iPhone 4S might not be different enough from the iPhone 4 to do well in the marketplace.

The impressive first-day preorders are a bit of good news for Apple when the company could use some, in the wake of the death last week of Chairman Steve Jobs.

Full coverage: Steve Jobs: 1955-2011

Apple's iPhone 4, which looks the same as the 4S on the outside but has less sophisticated hardware on the inside, is Apple's best selling iPhone overall so far. The iPhone 4 has sold more than the first three generation of iPhones combined, Apple has said. It also held a single day preorder record of 600,000 units, which was surpassed by the iPhone 4S.

"We are blown away with the incredible customer response to iPhone 4S," Philip Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide product marketing, said in a statement. "The first day preorders for iPhone 4S have been the most for any new product that Apple has ever launched and we are thrilled that customers love iPhone 4S as much as we do."

The iPhone 4S is set to arrive in stores around Oct. 14, which should be about the same day that those who've pre-ordered the device will see their handsets arrive.

The iPhone 4S sales likely got a big boost from the fact that the new phone is available to more U.S. consumers than any previous iPhone version, with Sprint joining AT&T and Verizon in selling the gadget. The iPhone 4S also keeps the pricing structure of previous iPhones at 16-gigabytes of storage for $199 and 32-gigabytes for $299, on a 2-year contract. Apple is also releasing a 64-gigabyte iPhone for the first time, which sells for $399.


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Image: Apple reports more than 1 million orders in 24 hours for the iPhone 4S. Credit: Apple

Richard Stallman's dissenting view on Steve Jobs

One can always depend on Richard M. Stallman for a provocative take on technology issues, and his response to the death of Steve Jobs delivers. Founder of the free software (or open source) movement and the very model of the modern major iconoclast, Stallman wrote the following eulogy to Jobs on his personal blog on Oct. 6 (it’s worth reading in its entirety):

Steve Jobs, the pioneer of the computer as a jail made cool, designed to sever fools from their freedom, has died.

As Chicago Mayor Harold Washington said of the corrupt former Mayor Daley, "I'm not glad he's dead, but I'm glad he's gone." Nobody deserves to have to die -- not Jobs, not Mr. Bill, not even people guilty of bigger evils than theirs. But we all deserve the end of Jobs' malign influence on people's computing.

Unfortunately, that influence continues despite his absence. We can only hope his successors, as they attempt to carry on his legacy, will be less effective.

As one can surmise from that sendoff, Stallman’s and Jobs’ views on software as a business are diametrically opposed. A computer science pioneer and unpaid researcher at MIT, Stallman has militated against software patents and the anti-privacy features that are deeply embedded in today’s most popular mobile devices, Apple’s iPhone and iPad prominent among them. Apple’s sedulous control over the apps it markets to its customers similarly goes against the Stallman grain.

Steve Jobs: 1955-2011

Stallman's remarks have prompted an outpouring of indignation among the high-tech punditocracy, as though they were shocked at the rudeness of this famously outspoken activist's refusal to join the mass adoration of Apple's co-founder.

Yet Stallman's critique of Jobs' business model has merit. For all Jobs' focus on user-friendly devices, Apple's buttoned-down approach to its software and apps, along with the way its mobile devices facilitate violations of their users' privacy, should be the subject of much broader concern. Stallman's eulogy may get wide distribution because of its tone, but his underlying point about the digital world deserves to be heeded.


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Photo: Flowers, photos and apples make up a memorial in front of the home of Steve Jobs in Palo Alto on Saturday. Credit: Jim Gensheimer/San Jose Mercury News/MCT

Steve Jobs' funeral held Friday, report says

The funeral for Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who died Wednesday at age 56, is taking place Friday, a report says.

The Wall Street Journal, citing a person familiar with the matter, reported that the funeral would be small and private. The source would not disclose where and when it would take place.

Apple said it has not planned any public services for Jobs. But Tim Cook, who took over the reins at Apple after Jobs stepped down as chief executive in August, wrote in a letter to the company's staff that a "celebration of Steve's extraordinary life" would be held soon for employees.

Jobs previously battled pancreatic cancer in 2003 and underwent a liver transplant in 2009. His cause of death has not been publicly disclosed.

Apple is paying tribute to Jobs on its home page, and encouraged fans to share memories and thoughts through a dedicated email address.


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Photo: A makeshift memorial for Steve Jobs is seen on the sidewalk outside his home Friday in Palo Alto. Credit: Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images

Stephen Colbert drops sarcasm, honors Steve Jobs

With only a minimal amount of joking, the usually deadpan Stephen Colbert honored Apple co-founder Steve Jobs on Thursday's episode of "The Colbert Report."

"He was a visionary who changed the way we use computers, listen to music, communicate and stay awake in meetings," Colbert said. "But the thing I will miss is that no one else could make me beg quite like him."

A montage of clips from the show's archives followed with Colbert pleading, screaming and licking computer screens for Apple products over the years.

iPhone: "Apple, what part of give me a free iPhone don't you understand?"

iPad 2: "Oh my god, I need it!I need it! Oh, give it to me! Come on Apple, give me one through the TV, I know you have the technology!"

Bragging that he was "the first non-Apple person to have an iPad," Colbert replayed a clip from last year's Grammy Awards where he showed off the tablet computer months before it went on sale.

"All day, newsmen have been quoting Jobs' inspiring words through the years, like his engaging keynote announcements, his philosophical 2005 Stanford commencement speech and the soaring rhetoric of the iTunes terms and conditions," Colbert quipped. "But on a personal note, I was one of the few people who could call Steve Jobs a close personal friend, in that he communicated with me once."

The communication? A pithy one-liner email from Jobs to Colbert after the Grammy appearance.

"Subject: Last Night




Using his iPad 2, Colbert tapped back a sweet and sincere reply while on-air:

"Right back at ya. Thanks for everything."





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Photo: Stephen Colbert holds his iPad at the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards. Credit: Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times

Video: Stephen Colbert honors Steve Jobs. Credit: Comedy Central



Apple design chief Jonathan Ive to carry on Jobs' creative vision


Apple design chief Jonathan Ive may not be the brand name that Steve Jobs was.

But the future of Apple will largely depend on his ability to continue to deliver gadgets that consumers must have.

Ive helped design the iMac, iPod, iPhone and iPad, and he had such a close working relationship with Jobs that some joked they shared a brain.

A longtime Apple analyst told me last month that Ive's industrial design eye is so keen, it's "even better than Steve Jobs'." 

The 44-year-old British-born designer known to his friends as Jony is by all accounts a soft-spoken, self-effacing craftsman intensely driven not by money or glory (although he has plenty of both) but by the obsessive desire to create products that are meaningful to people. Former colleagues refer to the ability of a product to tap into people's emotions as "having Jony-ness."

Read more about Ive here.


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Photo: Steve Jobs talks about designer Jonathan "Jony" Ive at a 2008 meeting in Cupertino, Calif.  Photo credit: Paul Sakuma / Associated Press 

Larry Brilliant recalls the personal side of Steve Jobs

Over the course of 35 years of friendship, Larry Brilliant never gave an interview about Steve Jobs.

Jobs shielded himself and his family from the media, and his friends respected his privacy. But over the summer, Jobs told Brilliant that he would be "happy to have people talk about him," Brilliant recalled Thursday.

So Brilliant, an epidemiologist who was the director of Google's philanthropic arm, broke his silence Thursday. He recalled first meeting Jobs when Jobs was 19. Brilliant was in India working to eradicate smallpox.

Jobs had dropped out of college and traveled to India to meet Brilliant's guru, Neem Karoli Baba. Baba died before Jobs reached the Kainchi Ashram with a Reed College friend –- and later, Apple's first employee -- Daniel Kottke.

"We met when he, like all of us, were spiritual seekers in India. It was that quality in him that people feel even though these are physical instruments, iPhones, iPods, iPads. People can feel that he was continuing that quest," Brilliant said. "He had this idea back in the 1970s, that cliche of giving power to the people. He really believed it. When he made the first Apple II, he thought he was giving power to the people by putting a computer on everyone's desk so they would not have to be dependent on the priesthood with mainframes. This was giving power to the people in a very real way, not a theoretical way. What he has done is democratize access to information and access to beauty."

Because his private life was so little known, few outside of Jobs' inner circle experienced the caring side of Jobs, Brilliant said.

In 2006 when Brilliant joined Google, both his wife and son were diagnosed with cancer. He was distraught. He says Jobs supported him by creating spreadsheets that ranked cancer surgeons based on a number of criteria including post-surgery infection rate, follow-up care and approval ratings.

"That's the part that people couldn't possibly know -- the love and the care that he put into everything he did. He just loved his family, Laurene (Powell) and the kids. He loved them more than anyone could articulate. And he loved Apple," Brilliant said.

"The defining character of Steve Jobs isn't his genius, it isn't his talent, it isn't his success. It's his love. That's why crowds came to see him. You could feel that. It sounds ridiculous to talk about love when you are making a gadget. But Steve loved his work, he loved the products he produced, and it was palpable. He communicated that love through bits of steel and plastic."


Steve Jobs' virtual DNA to be fostered in Apple University

The truth about Steve Jobs and Xerox PARC

Steve Jobs biography: Release date moves up, skyrockets to No. 1

-- Jessica Guynn

Photo: Larry Brilliant. Photo credit: Joi Ito


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