Celebrity Geek: Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs can only be described as a highly successful, ambitious soul. From his earliest years as a teenager, he had a strong curiosity about all things technical. As a high schooler, he would stop by Hewlett Packard (HP) regularly after school to attend the lectures given there. It was not long before HP saw his potential and hired him.
Just like many of our featured “Celebrity Geeks” and technology entrepreneurs, Steve Jobs dropped out of college very early after starting. Although he chose not to pursue a career, the one thing that he did was to continue to audit classes. Auditing allows you to attend a class for a semester just like a regular student without having to be tested on the material and without receiving official college credit for it. All of these years later, Steve Jobs says that some of the courses that he audited at Reed were crucial to the way that he developed the graphical user interface (GUI) abilities of Mac computers. He specifically related the course he took in calligraphy with the accuracy of the type faces on Macs.
Although best known for the work that he has done with Apple, Steve Jobs has had many accomplishments; he was the co-founder, CEO and Chairman of Apple, Inc. Serious conflict caused him to leave Apple for a while but he was able to return on his own terms years later and to continue where he left off. He was also the CEO of Pixar Animation Studios and sits on the Board of Directors of the Walt Disney Company, which was bought by Pixar.
Early on in his career, Steve left the country and spent time living in India. He returned to the United States a different man. He had converted to Buddhism and even wore Indian robes daily for a while. Even today, Jobs considers himself to have a “counter-culture” mentality and says that this has and still does strongly influence the unique course his life has taken.
At present, Steve Jobs works for Apple, although he is on a leave of absence due to issues related to his health. In 2004, Jobs discovered that he had a cancerous tumor on his pancreas. He has fought the disease through diet, lifestyle as well as through traditional medicine. The past few years of his life have been spent fighting against this sickness in one form or another.