One of the most iconic figures of the modern day technological age, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, has passed away at the age of 56.
Jobs, who in 2009 had a six-month absence from the firm as he continued his fight with cancer, officially stepped down as CEO of Apple in August. He had always vowed that should his illness ever progress to the stage where he was unable to fully fulfil his role at Apple he would step away.
As a youngster Jobs was adopted by a Californian couple. At school he struck up a relationship with fellow Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, though he soon abandoned his studies to take up a role at Atari.
After a stint travelling the world (during which he became both a Buddhist and a vegetarian) he and Wozniack launched the Apple 1 in the mid seventies.
A decade later Jobs was actually booted from Apple, with co-workers bemoaning his independent mindedness and reluctance to compromise.
Having gone on to establish Pixar and play a part in the design and release of Toy Story, Jobs returned to the company and drove it through the most successful phase in the company's history.
At one stage earlier this year Apple was crowned the biggest company in the world – remarkable for a firm that specialises in high-end, high-cost consumer electronics.
It was in this period that Jobs oversaw the creation of brands such as iTunes and the iPod and eventually the iPhone and, most recently, the iPad. Jobs was the first to realise that form and design, as well as the ability to sell your product as a liftstyle choice, was every bit as important as the device itself.
His ideas have lead to a transformation in the handheld gaming sector and have defined how the modern portable games player expects to access and consume their media.
We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today,” a brief Apple statement read.
Steve's brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations thatenrich 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.”