Steve Jobs, the legendary co-founder of Apple and the man behind the iPod, iPhone and iPad, would have turned 61 Wednesday. The inventor died in 2011 following a battle with pancreatic cancer, but his story continues to inspire entrepreneurs and tech aficionados around the globe.
"He worked really hard. Every day. That’s incredibly simple, but true," his sister, Mona Simpson, wrote in the New York Times after his death. "He was the opposite of absent-minded. He was never embarrassed about working hard, even if the results were failures."
The world has not forgotten Jobs in his absence. Multiple movies have been made about his life, and just this week his friend Mark Sheff put up some of his personal items — including his favored uniform of a black turtleneck and Birkenstock sandals — for auction. Media outlets have recently unearthed Jobs' comments on user privacy in light of the continuing debate over whether Apple should unlock certain iPhones for the government. (For the record, he said: "Privacy means people know what they’re signing up for — in plain English, and repeatedly.")
"Quality is more important than quantity . . . one home run is much better than two doubles."
"When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: 'If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you'll most certainly be right.' It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: 'If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?' And whenever the answer has been no for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something."
"I think if you do something and it turns out pretty good, then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long. Just figure out what's next."
"It takes a passionate commitment to really thoroughly understand something, chew it up, not just quickly swallow it."
"Victory in our industry is spelled survival. The way we're going to survive is to innovate our way out of this."
"Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life."
"I'm an optimist in the sense that I believe humans are noble and honorable, and some of them are really smart. I have a very optimistic view of individuals. As individuals, people are inherently good. I have a somewhat more pessimistic view of people in groups."
"The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it."
"Stay hungry. Stay foolish."
"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? . . . so it better be damn good. It better be worth it."
"Creativity is just connecting things."
"When you're a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you're not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will ever see it. You'll know it's there, so you're going to use a beautiful piece of wood on the back. For you to sleep well at night, the aesthetic, the quality, has to be carried all the way through."
"One more thing."