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tv   The Last Word  MSNBC  October 5, 2011 11:00pm-12:00am EDT

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intricate process being participated in here. this is not random. it is chaotic but not random. a very intricate process. there is a book we have breaking news tonight. apple has just confirmed the sad news that its co-founder and former ceo, steve jobs, has died. he was 56 years old. steve jobs battled pancreatic cancer and underwent a liver transplant in 2009. he stepped down as ceo in august after saying he was no longer able to fulfill his duties. in a statement this evening, apple said, "apple has lost a
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visionary and creative genius and the world has lost an amazing human being. those of us who have been fortunate enough to know and work with steve have lost a dear friend and an inspiring mentor. steve leaves behind a company that only he could have built and his spirit will forever be the foundation of apple." a statement from apple's board of directors reads, "we are deeply saddened to announce that steve jobs passed away today. steve's brilliance, passion and energy were the sources 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, lauren and his family. our hearts go out to him and all touched by his extraordinary gifts." joining me by phone, veteran of the industry, technology analyst, rob enderly. thanks for joining me tonight.
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>> my pleasure. thank you for having me. >> rob, when i read those statements, i realize they are true. this is someone whose spirit and genius has touched virtually all of this in this country. you don't have to be a mac user, although so many people are. iphone users, so many people are. to be affected we the amazing, creative input he has delivered to this country during his lifetime. >> yeah, that's correct. he really had -- he was the heart and soul of apple and apple became kind of the heart and soul of the technology market while he was here. he was ceo of the decade, last decade. and apple rose to prominence as being the most well valued company, highly valued company in the united states, if not the world. while he was there. at least for a short time. he was an amazing individual and he'll be one that will be long missed and not easily replaced. >> and it is as great and colorful an american success
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story as we have. someone who started trying to put a thing together called a computer in his garage. thinking that there was home market for computers. those of us old enough to know that the home market for color televisions hard started not long before that know how extraordinary a dream that was when he was working in his garage. >> yeah, that's correct. it really was a rags to riches story. he was an orphan and adopted as a child. he explored what many of us explored as we were growing up including traveling india by barefoot which almost killed him. the -- he came to be a power and an icon both by virtue of his unique vision and kind of his unique charisma. he was able to retransform
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himself after being fired from apple and come back and actually save the company he helped create. raising it to levels that it wasn't even close to when it was initially formed. i think levels that nobody believed it could actually reach. the -- he was a truly amazing person. >> rob, please standby. stay with us for a moment. we have more on this breaking news story. the life of steve jobs. here's nbc news george lewis. >> reporter: he was the father of the iphone, the ipod and the apple mac computer. turning electronic gadgets into objects of desire. >> i think if you do something and it turns out pretty good then you should go do something else wonderful. >> reporter: as he was fond of saying, wait, there's more. >> today apple is going to reinvent the phone. >> reporter: and people did wait. in long lines for the first
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iphones in 2007. then three years later, they lined up for the ipad. changing the way people consume media. >> design plus function equals the right lifestyle. and that's what he filled. >> reporter: in 1976, jobs co-founded apple computer and within a few years was worth $100 million. in 1984 he was showing off his new pride and joy. the macintosh. >> it has turned out insanely great. >> reporter: as critics hailed the mac, job was in a power struggling with his company and left apple a year later. he went into computer animation acquiring pixar studios and struck pay dirt starting with movies, like "toy story." >> to infinity and beyond. >> reporter: jobs began reinventing the mac, dressing it up in a variety of colors. >> they look so good you want to lick them. >> reporter: concerns about the health of steve jobs began in
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2004 when he underwent surgery for pancreatic cancer. a year later he spoke about that during a commencement speech at stanford university. >> this was the closest i've been to facing death and i hope it's the closest i get for a few more decades. >> reporter: an intensely private man with a quick temper, jobs kept reporters at bay saying his health was nobody's business. >> guys -- >> reporter: but jobs was losing weight. something revealed in these photos taken in 2007 and 2008. in april 2009, he underwent a liver transplant. five months later, back at the job at apple, he expressed his gratitude. >> i now have a liver of a mid 20s person who died in a car crash and was generous enough to donate their organs. and i wouldn't be here without such generosity. >> reporter: on august 24th of this year he stepped down as
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apple's ceo. back in 2005, he offered this bit of advice to the stanford university grads. >> your time is limited so don't waste it living someone else's life. don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. >> reporter: steve jobs, a man whose own inner voice led him to create some of the most visionary products of the internet era. jobs leaves behind a wife and four children. george lewis, nbc news, los angeles. >> i'm rejoined now by rob enderle, a technology industry analyst. rob, i don't think there is a company out there that produces a product where the consumer feels a more direct connection to the founder of the company, to the guiding creative genius of all the products that apple has released. that experience of opening apple packaging, whether it be for the
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ipod, whether it be for a mac, the phone, it feels as if steve jobs has designed every moment of that. every moment of the unpacking before you even turn on the machine. >> well, he did. i mean, at apple he was the super-user. he was their focus group. the products were built to his specifications and had to meet his personal approval. unlike no other ceo in the technology segment or most other segments, he took a personal interest in the products and to a large extent that's why apple didn't have too many of them. it actually had a very small number of products because each one had to be blessed by its ceo. even the image that apple portrayed to the world was largely crafted by steve jobs, personally, as was most of the relationships that resided around him. he was unique in the segment. >> rob, tim cook, the new head of apple, had the misfortune yesterday, i guess, of having to take the stage with the toughest act to follow in the technology industry.
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to introduce a new edition of the iphone. some of the reviews were not so good, but trying to follow steve jobs on that stage is virtually impossible, unimaginable in that business. where does apple go from here? >> well, unfortunately probably down. i mean, apple was, i think larry ellison said it best. apple was the physical extension of steve jobs' soul. you can't have one effectively without the other. he touched every part of that company. i think one of the advantages of apple was that steve jobs actually managed much of what was in apple. he was hands-on. he was a micromanager. he made sure everything was perfect personally. you extract somebody like that from a company, that company is forever changed. it really is like ripping the heart out of a person. and cook was hired to do the things that steve jobs didn't want to do. so instead of being like steve
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jobs, he was actually pretty much his polar opposite. so the fact that he stepped into steve's shoes, that should have been obvious from the start. >> steve jobs achieved something that every politician dreams of, and indeed every dictator would dream of. which is the affection of everyone who is in his realm and the credit for everything good that happens in his realm. the consumer would credit steve jobs specifically with everything they liked about apple and there are all sorts of technology products out there including automobiles, including very sophisticated automobiles, bmws and others that people buy. they bring passion to the purchase. but they don't care what is the head of that company when they're buying that product. they feel the connection to the product and sometimes an emotional connection to the product, but not to the ceo of a company. that seems to me to be a unique achievement of steve jobs.
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>> well, that was because steve jobs personally did care about the product. i mean -- when you're a ceo you get involved with partners and investors and the day-to-day rigmarole of the company. there are many ceos who often don't touch their products anymore and haven't for years. that is somebody else's responsibility. with jobs, these were products that were made specifically to his specification. they were his. he was a super craftsman scaling himself to the millions of users that they had. it was what made him different. when you touch an iphone, at least today, you touch steve jobs. that is unique. you just don't have that with any other products. >> rob, the flag is now flying at half-mast outside of the headquarters at apple. a loss like no other company has suffered in recent memory that we're seeing today. you've study his life. he packed as much life as you possibly could into 56 years. how did his illness change him?
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>> well, to some extent it humanized him. you certainly saw him waste away. have to wrap his mind around the fact he was going to past and it weakened him, though. to be clear, he held on to the job as long as anybody possibly could. he was tied to the company as tightly as walt disney was tied to disney. as tightly as any executive i've ever seen. they were two halves of a whole and when he left, clearly apple was left substantially reduced. and i think to a large extent, when he left, he was substantially reduced. both the company and steve jobs needed each other desperately and it's doubtful any one of them could survive the others. i think it was one of the reasons he was tied so tightly to the job. he was convinced he couldn't survive without being a major part of apple. so it's -- his passing is a
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great, a very deep meaning i think for the overall technology market and in general apple in particular. >> technology analyst rob enderle, thank you very much for joining me. >> my pleasure. take care. joining me now, by phone, is cnbc's ron ensauna. thanks for joining me. >> lawrence, thanks for having me. on truly sad day and obviously for the jobs family and the people around him and also as was just said, i mean, for an entire industry that's been so innovative and mr. jobs has been behind so many of these innovations, it's a staggering loss for i think really many people who have either as i've had, had the pleasure to chat with him or interview him or those who worked with him or lived with him. >> i've known this little less than a half an hour. the second i knew it, i knew we had to completely rearrange our show and lead with this. this is very important news. it is also history. i've been sitting trying to think of where we will put steve
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jobs in american history. when we are listing the great entrepreneurial innovators who changed our lives. who changed the way our day goes, from thomas edison forward. this -- in that list, this name, steve jobs, will be in bold print. >> oh, absolutely. i think you're right to identify edison as one and henry ford being another. as was just said, walt disney. milton hershey. companies where the individual's legacy lived on through the business entity they created. and also changed culture, processes as mr. jobs did while he was at apple, when he was gone and more importantly when he came back. he has done so many ground breaking things. don't forget, he also started
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pixar, the animation company that's now owned by walt disney. he's been on the forefront of technological changes. interestingly enough, lawrence, when he came back to apple, the company was effectively believe to be going out of business and it also, when he came back to apple, he was really turning the company around at a time after the internet bubble burst. when people thought there would be no new major applications that would excite the technology industry. next thing we knew, we had the ipod then the iphone then the ipad. and so he has done so much to revolutionize technology as walt disney did in animation, henry ford in automation, autos and edison and others. it's truly, he's a giant among industrialists if you will in the history of our country. >> ron, as we've been speaking, we've been rolling tape obviously of steve jobs and the way he'd take the stage for the product demonstrations and deliver these stunning ways of
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changing our relationship to the computer. not necessarily in basic computer terms, inventing something dramatically new, but finding a way to make it what the consumer needed in order to harness the raw power of computing. here is someone who started a business in an industry that did not exist when he was born. and then in effect created an industry, the home computer industry that very few others at the time he did it thought was possible. they thought that, sure, there's a market for home toasters and for television, but a home computer? sounded crazy. >> remember ibm rejected the notion of a personal computer years ago and decided there was no notion for individuals to own computers that sat on a desktop or on your lap or in your hand. when apple 2 came out, i
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remember a friend of mine in high school and bought one in early college. however clunky it seems in retrospect, remember that someone like me in college was typing on, if i was lucky, an ibm seletric, more likely a manual typewriter and using whiteout. my friend was typing on a dot matrix that took 20 minutes to page. steve jobs and wasniak came and made these products unusually acceptable to individuals in ways we'd never seen before. it was a quantum leap in the way the products developed but now have proliferated. you look at the people who have come after apple, whether with android phones, smart phones, whatever you want to call them or other types of tablet devices. they've truly broken ground. as early as five or six years ago, people weren't really contemplating. he was continuously more than a step ahead of everybody else in his competitors. it was interesting he ultimately did open the company up and make
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it more user friendly than it was in the early days when it was considered an educational product or graphic arts product or part of a tight-knit community of apple users. it is now in many ways probably the most broadly recognized name in computing, which it certainly was not in the early days of its introduction. >> ron, there's a moment i experienced in college i will never forget. i was in a casual conversation with a college dean who was explaining to me he had just spoken to a kid who was thinking of dropping out and he was trying to talk him out of dropping out but this kid kept telling him, this is the moment. i have to go to this. i have to go do this now. that kid was bill gates who had an idea for software. he did drop out of harvard college. he knew that was his moment. if he waited a few more years until he graduated, the moment would have passed. steve jobs seemed to know when
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he was working in this garage, this is the moment. i can't wait another year. how did they know what others didn't know, that this was the moment? that this was where you had to be at that time in order to in effect create this industry? >> i think when you look back at all visionaries, there's a combination of real skill, real intellect and a feel for the environment that may be lacking in some of their competitors. you sense that you're on the very cusp of radical change. and knowing that you have an idea, that it might be early, it might be a few minutes early, but it's innovators like steve jobs and bill gates and, you know, mark zuckerberg, quite frankly, all three of them, zuckerberg and gates, both dropped out of harvard. i think harvard produced as many successful dropouts as it has graduates by now. you see that opportunity. that narrow window in which you can rush and bring something brand new. and really excite a consumer
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base. and i think they all have an intuitive sense for that and, you know, in the case of most of the very, very successful businesspeople that i've connected with including mr. jobs, there is a level of gran granularity that they get to in the understanding of the marketplace, of consumer behavior, of life generally that is truly amazing. if you had the opportunity to speak to some of these individual, and i have in the past interviewed bill gates about not just computers but the way he approached the vaccination issue for communicable diseases in africa. granular knowledge of that. the same with steve jobs or bill clinton or others that could really take very complex issues and understand them so thoroughly and use that intuition that they have, the excitement, the energy that they
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have to really create these breakthrough moments, whether in business, politics, what have you. they're really in many ways unique individuals but share common characteristics. extraordinary curiosity, extraordinary drive, extraordinary understanding and intuition. i remember after mr. jobs was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer that he had, he took time off and came back and was doing a product introduction and i had the good fortune of sitting down with him for an interview via satellite. we had at times had contentious on-air relationships. i would often ask questions about the business and he was focused on a product and we'd kind of go back and forth and he wouldn't want to answer a question. i recall after he came back, i said, listen, this is not a got-you question. i just want to know, how are you doing after your surgery? he said, listen, i'm doing fine, thank you very much for asking. it was actually one of the most genuine moments we shared on cnbc.
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from that point forward it was interesting, we had a kind of much better on-air relationship. and i was fascinated to see a slight -- it was just a glimmer, away from the personality that he often carried on the air where he would answer only the questions he liked to answer and would be very product focused and very focused on his message. he did at that moment become very human to me. i even to the extent that i'm capable, i feel a sense of loss here. it's almost like i remember the night when john lennon was shot. there's a certain similar feeling to that. that we're losing an icon. >> yeah, ron, that's exactly what i was thinking. and it's hard to compare these different kinds of people in our lives, but this is a giant figure. and i think the lennon comparison is there. as are others to consider. when we think of now the second and third -- we're into the second, third, i don't know, maybe fourth generation of technology entrepreneurs, the
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marc zuckerbergs. it's very clear from the start, that many of them, virtually all of them, were looking for their way to become billionaires in our digital lives. but when you go back to the beginning, when you go back to where steve jobs was in his garage and bill gates trying to write a new software that had never been conceived of before, you get the feeling from them, certainly, that they were much more excited at that time about this amazing new technology that they knew about, that they were probably trying to explain to relatives of theirs and been frustrated in realizing i can't -- i have to do this, i can't explain this, i'm going to need a product to show them i get this. you get the feeling from them that the money was secondary, that they weren't doing this to become billionaires. they were doing this to show that it could be done. >> and remember when they were doing it as well, lawrence, it
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was almost impossible to think of billions of dollars. >> that's right. there weren't billionaires among us. that's right. >> millionaire was something that was in those days almost out of reach for most people. i'll share an anecdote, with bill gates rather than with steve jobs but it goes directly to that point. i was at the comdex show when that used to go on in the 1980s in las vegas. one month after the stock market crash in 1987. i managed to secure an interview with bill gates. he was a young bill gates. microsoft had made him at that point a billionaire. single billion. he was worth about $1 billion. the crash of '87 wiped out about 33% of his net worth. we were talking. i said, listen, i rarely ask the touchy feeley questions given i'm working in business. let me ask you something, what were you thinking in 1987? i was sitting at my desk, someone walked in, i was having a good day and told me the stock market is down a lot. i said, oh, okay and went back
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to work. the concept of having lost $333 million in a day didn't really seem to faze him in the sense that you might imagine. i think that was true for all those early innovators. they were idea guys. they were changing the world in a way that was different than let's say the '60s generation was. the '60s generation -- we're seeing this again today with the new iteration among the occupy wall street kids and the tea party folks who want to change their world. the '60s, the pragmatist of the '80s, late '70s, '80s, like the gates, jobs, and others who used their skill and passion to create real cultural change that actually is going to be maybe considerably more long lasting than any of the other groups before them. this is not political change. this was cultural revolution. technological revolution. that really has dramatically changed the way we interact, the way we do business, the way we communicate. and that happens, you know, once in a generation.
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these were the guys, and steve jobs certainly was at the forefront of that revolution. and i would say to a great extent has left the company positioned to do that. i know there were people complaining about the introduction of the new iphone earlier this week, that it wasn't quite as exciting as they might have hoped. and unfortunately those two events, the introduction of that newest phone and mr. jobs passing, are going to be maybe inextricably linked in the same week and make people doubt apple can survive him. i think he imbued the company with enough spirit and has tim cook and a product pipeline deep enough that's going to survive him several years to come. for those that i think are maybe overly pessimistic about apple's future, i think one of the genius elements of mr. jobs is he's been able to create an entity that probably has a very good life going forward. >> ron insana of cnbc. thank you very much for joining
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me tonight. >> lawrence, thank you. >> bill gates, the former chief executive of microsoft said in a statement that he was, "truly saddened to learn of steve jobs' death." he added, "the world rarely sees someone who has had the profound impact steve has had. the effects of which will be felt for many generations to come. for those of us lucky enough to get to work with him, it's been an insanely great honor. i will miss steve immensely." joining me now on the phone is nbc chief medical editor dr. nancy snyderman. dr. nancy snyderman, what do we know about this illness that has taken steve jobs? >> lawrence, we've known for quite some time that he has had a rare pancreatic cancer that no one even from day one has ever used the word cure, but he had seven years of really aggressive and really concentrated
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treatment. i remember the day he announced that he had a hormone imbalance with his pancreas. i thought that was probably a code word for a rare kind of cancer that only makes up about 5% of the 47,000 cases of pancreatic cancer that we see every year. and at that time started concentrated treatment and then you may remember years later when he announced he had a liver transplant. it was for many doctors a sign that the tumor had spread to his liver. good news that he got a liver transplant, but guarded news in that any time you get an organ transplant, you have to go on medicines that suppress your immune system and that always raised the question of whether it would hurt his immune system and allow the cancer to grow back. most people with his cancer, maybe two or three years, but
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the survival rate overall is well below 10%. i just have to say, based on the conversation listening to you guys the last few minutes, i think the country tonight is going to take a very deep sigh and pause and frankly shed a tear. this is just profoundly sad. on a societal level, on a sin scientific level and medical level. >> dr. nancy snyderman. thanks for joining me tonight. >> you bet, lawrence. >> we'll be back with more on the life and death of steve jobs. the genius behind apple who died today at the age of 56. ♪ [ female announcer ] find yourself sometimes cleaning up after your dishcloth? bounty extra soft can help. it's super durable, and in this lab test bounty extra soft leaves this surface three times cleaner than a dishcloth. even with just one sheet.
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we're back with the breaking news of the death of steve jobs today. at the age of 56. joining me now, howard fineman, editorial director of aol "huffington post" media group. howard, thanks for joining me tonight. >> sure, lawrence. >> howard, you -- when i read your title now, aol "huffington post" media group, it's a job that would not have existed were it not for steve jobs' creativity in his garage, thinking there's a market for this thing, this idea of mine, the home computer. that's where your work is now consumed. not just on home computers, but on computers people are holding in their hands, created again by steve jobs. the iphone. other smart phone, digital devices. this is -- i've been trying to place him, howard, in his position in american history, in our lives from alexander graham
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bell, thomas edison, forward, through the people who created things that changed our lives. >> well, you're absolutely right about the immediate business, lawrence, for one. when i joined "the huffington post," one of the first things i did when i visited our headquarters down in soho at the time was to meet with a group of developers. of course, they were all under the age of 26 or 27 and they just produced "the huff post" first new generation of ipad app for our publication online. and all the kids there, and i say they're kids because they are, were totally fixed on how to talk in steve jobs' world. it was a world that steve jobs created that we were so eager and are so eager to speak in and speak through. his genius was to be a kind of ambassador between the world of machines and the world of humanity and make people comfortable with and eager to use intelligent machines.
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and i cover politics, but i can tell you that in a way what this election is about coming up is whether we're still the kind of country that can create, can nurture and reward somebody like steve jobs. steve jobs was never about fancy financial manipulation. he didn't care about arbitrage or leveraged buyouts. he didn't try to manipulate wall street other than to try to sell great products that people would buy. nor did he really get involved in politics. i mean, some of the high-tech big shots do. i think that's changing more than will. but steve jobs has passed away before that new era has come about. he didn't care about super pacs. he didn't care necessarily about endorsing candidates. he was apolitical in the sense he was always about what he was creating.
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when i think about our generation, lawrence, when i think about the baby boom generation and contrast it with the greatest generation, i often think we come up short. we're the greediest generation, the most selfish generation, turning individualism into a cult. steve jobs is the other side of that story. steve jobs took their creativity that was born in the '60s and applied it to the world of machines, intelligent machines in a way that brought the spirit of creativity of his childhood to not only the united states, but the whole world. and if we're a country that still can produce and nurture people like him is what this election is about. it's interesting that all the occupy people -- i would bet you that most of the kids and people who are down there in manhattan and elsewhere around the country and the occupy protests are sitting there with their macair s sending out reports from the front.
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that's something steve jobs enabled for the tea party and now for the kids on the other side. >> ron insana was talking about the technology revolution that steve job, bill gates and others created. it was a revolution, indeed. his comments were focused exclusively on both the business revolution involved and the product revolution involved, but those products enabled revolution to be done a different way as we saw this year in tahrir square and in egypt. that this was a revolution enabled by the technology that some of these people, like bill gates and definitely steve jobs, thought up in their garages a generation ago. >> well, the difference between gates and -- bill gates and steve jobs, in my estimation, having kind of lived through the development of all these products, is that bill gates was for people who wanted to lift up the hood, for the gearheads, if you will, because he came out of
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that world of software. whereas what steve jobs did from the beginning with the mac -- with his macs, macintoshs and forward is to put it all in a case, to make it user friendly, to make it really neat, to make it look great, to make you -- a machine that would make you smile. when you walk into an apple store, which is also a steve jobs' creation, the vibe in there, the sense of excitement, the sense of exploration is the kind of thing he was always pushing and people were always trying to develop apps for everything he did once the iphone came about. and i know in the 2008 campaign barack obama's campaign was perfectly attune to this world in general and to the apple world in particular. you have to give credit in this case to marc zuckerberg and facebook as well. the obama campaign was a facebook enabled campaign. the first of its kind. you had people all over the country developing special apps for the obama campaign for
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iphones. including maps that would pop up telling you where there were undecided voters. telling you how many times people in a precinct had been approached and so forth. so the creativity that was enabled by jobs and by gates and zuckerberg and others was used by obama in 2008 and the tea party in 2010 and will be used in ways we can't quite imagine in 2012 in this campaign. and i as a former print guy am racing to try to keep up with those developments as part of "the huffington post." >> we got a statement from new york's mayor michael bloomberg i'd like to read. he released this statement about the death of steve jobs. "tonight america lost a genius who will be remembered with edison and einstein and whose ideas will shape the world for generations to come. again and again over the last four decades, steve jobs saw the future and brought it to lifelong before most people could have seen the horizon. and steve's passionate belief in the power of technology to
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transform the way we live brought us more than smart phones and ipads. it brought knowledge and power that is reshaping the face of civilization. in new york city's government, everyone from street construction inspectors to nypd detectives have harnessed apple's products to do their jobs more efficiently and intuitively. tonight our city, a city that has always had such respect and admiration for creative genius, joins with people around the planet in remembering a great man and keeping laurene and the rest of the jobs family in our thoughts and prayers." joining me now is janet shamlian who is live just outside of apple headquarters in cupertino, california. janet, what is the scene there?
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>> reporter: well, you know, this is the home, the campus of apple, lawrence. and right now the flags behind me, i don't know if you can see them, they're flying at half-staff. there's a sense of sadness here. the news is still so fresh. the work day here on the west coast is just ending or in many cases still continuing here. but this is the birthplace of everything you have been talking about. the iphone, the ipod. the mac. the apps. and so all of this, the creative genius of steve jobs, there's a powerful sense of just sadness here. even though that many people felt like this was coming. apple has been very quick to respond. go to apple.com and there is simply a picture of steve jobs in black and white with the dates of his birth and death. and apple within the last few minutes has issued a statement just expressing their sadness and what he has done for the
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world saying he has made it an immeasurably better place. and, of course, millions of his fans around the world, lawrence, would agree with that. but this campus where he had day-to-day contact with so many people for so many years, people who built this company with him, over a period of decades, there's very much a sense of sadness, lawrence. >> janet, we've watched him publicly decline physically over time. so there is not a shock about this from that perspective, but there was a shock, i can tell you, when the word went out in our newsroom that steve jobs had died. the first reaction was shock and it was shock at a personal level. it wasn't the first reaction you always get to these kinds of things in newsrooms. there's also -- there was very quickly a professional let's get to work reaction. but it was -- at first landed emotionally. >> reporter: it did, because this is -- he is part of our day so much in the stuff we use. let's talk about this comes one day after the big announcement yesterday. and in some respects, it was a letdown.
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we were all waiting for the iphone 5, right? we got the iphone 4s. we had the new ceo there. it was the first time steve jobs was not there for a major announcement. in terms of product and personality, it just didn't live up to the past announcements that have happened feet away from where i'm standing now. this is hitting people in a very personal way because they have incorporated these products into share their life. we feel like we know steve jobs. in some ways it's a passing that would rival that of an elected public figure in our country. >> janet, we now have a statement from steve jobs' family that i'm going to read. the statement says, steve died peacefully today surrounded by his family. in his public life steve was known as a visionary. in his private life he cherished his family. we're thankful to the many people who shared their wishes and prayers during the last year of steve's illness. a website will be provided for
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those who wish to offer tributes and memories." we will be back with more. janet, we're going to break here. we will be back. we will be back with more on the life and death of steve jobs. the genius, the creative visionary behind apple. who has died today at the age of 56. ♪ [ female announcer ] have you ever seen a glacier while sunbathing? why not? have you ever climbed a rock wall in the middle of the ocean? or tried something really wild? why not? it's all possible in the nation of why not. royal caribbean's floating nation where you're free to do anything you want. which may be nothing at all. royal caribbean international. visit royalcaribbean.com today. ♪ ♪
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we're back with more breaking news coverage of the death today of steve jobs. at the age of 56. cnbc's jon fortt has more about the life and work of steve jobs. >> reporter: visionary. rule breaker. creative genius. steve jobs, more than any other figure, shaped our digital era on his own terms and created hundreds of billions of dollars of value along the way. his story has an unlikely beginning. steven paul jobs was born in san francisco in 1955. given up by his birth parents, he was adopted by a family in the heart of silicon valley. he dropped out of college to pursue his ideas and teamed up with a friend to build a new kind of computer, one anybody could use. the company they founded was the first to make computers truly personal. at a time when pcs were green text on black screens.
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apple brought graphics and the mouse. at a time of beige boxes, it brought design. along the way, jobs reinvented music with a little gadget called an ipod. >> i have one right here in my pocket, in fact. there it is right there. >> reporter: and from there, went on to reinvent the phone. >> i think this is where the world's going. >> reporter: apple's total market value recently reached about $340 billion. its valuation is neck in neck with exxonmobil at the top of the heap for public companies. the company has 47,000 employees. those are just numbers. by the time jobs was done, he set a new standard for geeks, dreamers and business schools everywhere. built silicon valley's most valuable company and brought industries to their knees. but it wasn't all glory and
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success for jobs. apple's board forced him out in the '80s and for years he struggled to regain his footing. during those middle years, he bought a tiny animation studio from george lucas and started another computer company that seemed to go nowhere. then one of the great american comebacks. a decade after he was shown the door at apple, jobs returned to save it. that other computer company he founded, its software brought the luster back to apple's product line. and that little studio -- >> to infinity and beyond. >> reporter: -- pixar's 12 films have an average gross of nearly $600 million each. that's the best record in hollywood history. jobs sold pixar to disney for $7.4 billion. so how did it all happen? the main catalyst for jobs' renaissance had to be itunes. ♪ hello, hello >> reporter: apple launched it as mac-only software in january 2001. when jobs unveiled the ipod music player later that year, it seamlessly connected with itunes and kicked off apple's strategy of marrying hardware, software
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and internet services in one premium package. next came the itunes music store, selling songs for 99 cents. today, apple's itunes is the top music retailer in the world. bar none. with more than 10 billion songs sold. for a generation, jobs simply redefined a listening experience. >> millions of people are going to buy this to listen to their music. >> reporter: on the strength of itunes, jobs remade apple as a mobile powerhouse and never looked back. >> today apple is going to reinvent the phone. >> reporter: in 2007, he launched the iphone. three years later, he announced apple's first $20 billion quarter. but jobs' changing physical appearance as he announced one triumph after another was a signpost to his health problems. as itunes took off, he announced he had surgery for a tumor on his pancreas. soon after, he had a liver transplant. >> so i now have the liver of a mid 20s person who died in a car crash and was generous enough to
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donate their organs. and i wouldn't be here without such generosity. >> reporter: after the ipad's blockbuster holiday season, he said he would step away again. we saw him as apple launched the ipad 2 and its icloud initiative, but then jobs announced his resignation saying he could no longer perform his duties as apple ceo. a creative titan of american business. he's survived by his wife, laurene, and four children. [ sniffs ] i have a cold. [ sniffs ] i took dayquil but my nose is still runny. [ male announcer ] truth is, dayquil doesn't treat that. really? [ male announcer ] alka-seltzer plus fights your worst cold symptoms, plus it relieves your runny nose. [ deep breath] awesome.
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we are back with our coverage of the breaking news of the death of steve jobs. at age 56. that is a shot of apple headquarters in cupertino, california, where the flags have been flying at half-mast for a little over an hour now. at this point in the afternoon -- late afternoon in california. joining me now is lance ulenoff, editor and chief of mashinable.com and former editor of "pc" magazine. thanks for joining me tonight, lance. >> thanks for having me on. >> you were a friend of steve jobs for a very long time. what is your reaction to where we are tonight with this news? >> well, i should say, you know, i'm stunned. i worked with apple for year, you know, talking to them about products. i've been in the same room with steve jobs during his many
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product announcements. i never had the pleasure of sitting down to dinner with him though i wish i had. greatly admired what he did to our industry. i've been in this industry for an awfully long time. and i have never seen a figure quite like steve jobs. first of all, a true phoenix. somebody who we rode off in the mid '80s, as somebody who had one really good idea and then couldn't reproduce. and, you know, steve jobs went off, learned a bunch of stuff, started other businesses, gave us pixar, by the way and then came back and restarted, really restarted apple in the late '90s. as almost a different man. because his vision, his laserlike focus, allowed him to create a run of products that we've never seen before. we've never seen anything quite like it. a decade of iconic products that people simply have to have. there are a lot of other good companies out there making great products, but there's something
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different about apple products and that is because there was something different about steve jobs. he has been irreplaceable. apple knows that. apple didn't even bother trying to replace him. tim cook is a very different kind of leader, and that's fine. you know, when i think about steve jobs, i don't just think about a ceo. i think about a visionary. i think about somebody who knew how to package products, deliver them and then tell the tale of them on stage in a way that, you know, people try and do and they just fail. >> we've been watching video of him on stage and he was something of an entertainer. probably the best in that
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industry when it came to introducing products and that sort of thing. but there's also, you can feel an entertainers grip in an apple product when you open a box. you get an emotional reaction to some of the ways you experience that product for the very first time and you get the feeling that steve jobs knew, he knew this thing is going to amuse me, in a way a standup comedian knows this will get a laugh or a dramatist knew this would get a tear. he knew what the emotions would be. >> he knew it on stage and knew it away from the stage. what he understood is product experience was not simply the product, itself. so walk into an apple store and it begins the experience. talk to an apple so-called genius and the experience continues. pick up the product, bring it home, look at the box. you know, where did we -- why did we start doing what's called unboxing stories online? because appl

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