Steve Jobs: Timeline of the Entrepreneur
1955: Steve Jobs was born and adopted by Paul and Clara Jobs, a machinist and an accountant, in Mountain View, CA.
1974: After one semester at Reed College, Jobs, at age 19, drops out and takes a job at Atari, but leaves shortly later to travel India. He did squeeze in one calligraphy course at Reed. "If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts," he said.
1976: Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak found Apple computer with a $250,000 investment from Mike Markkula, an angel investor who cashed in stock options from his tenure at Fairchild Semiconductor. Jobs recalled: "So we went to Atari and said, 'Hey, we’ve got this amazing thing, even built with some of your parts, and what do you think about funding us? Or we’ll give it to you. We just want to do it. Pay our salary, we’ll come work for you.' And they said, 'No.' So then we went to Hewlett-Packard, and they said, 'Hey, we don’t need you. You haven’t got through college yet.'"
1983: Steve Jobs recruited John Sculley, a VP at PepsiCo, to join Apple. To convince the PepsiCo executive to transition, Jobs famously asked Sculley: "Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling sugared water or do you want a chance to change the world?"
1985: The relationship between Jobs and Sculley, who had recently been named Apple's "Dyanic Duo" by BusinessWeek, began to sour. Jobs tried to go behind Sculley's back to get him ousted, but Sculley discovered Jobs' ploy. Jobs left the company soon after and launched NeXT, a company that tried to build a computer to revolutionize higher education.
1986: Jobs buys Pixar for $10 million from George Lucas. Jobs said: "We don’t get a chance to do that many things, and every one should be really excellent. Because this is our life...Life is brief, and then you die, you know?"
1995: Jobs becomes a billionaire after Toy Story is released, and Pixar goes public. "I was worth over $1,000,000 when I was 23, and over $10,000,000 when I was 24, and over $100,000,000 when I was 25, and it wasn’t that important because I never did it for the money," Jobs said.
1996: Jobs returns to Apple to become interim CEO after Apple purchases NeXT. In 2000, he becomes the company's permanent CEO, and will remain in this position for over a decade. "My job is to not be easy on people," Jobs has said. "My job is to make them better."
2004: Jobs undergoes surgery for pancreatic cancer. "So when a good idea comes, you know, part of my job is to move it around, just see what different people think, get people talking about it, argue with people about it, get ideas moving among that group of 100 people, get different people together to explore different aspects of it quietly, and, you know--just explore things," Jobs said.
2010: Apple releases the iPad touchscreen tablet, which quickly becomes one of the company's fastest-selling products. In less than two years, nearly 30 million units have been sold. "Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes," Jobs has said. "It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations."
2011: In January, Jobs takes a leave of absence from Apple citing health issues. He resigns officially as CEO in August, but will remain chairman of the board. He said: "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. Unfortunately, that day has come."