Steve Jobs….and others

Steve Jobs truly did bring liberal arts to the computer industry.  His vision of how to take the phenomenal technological advances which have been made over the last 50 years and turn them into products that would unleash individual and group creativity was one of his most significant contributions. However tough he was on those he worked with, his empathy for the ultimate user led to advances in design that will continue to push multiple industries in their usage of hardware, software and the internet in general.

The palpable sadness that so many people felt hearing of his death is a testimony to the universality of his impact.

Others will have much more to say about Steve Jobs. He was a special individual. He was also the first one to give credit to some of the giants who preceded him who were critical to developing the enabling technologies that he had the vision to use so effectively. It’s a good time to remember them as well—Bill Hewlett, David Packard, Robert Noyce.  And we’ve got some folks who are still around that deserve to be remembered at this time as well—Gordon Moore, Andy Grove and, of course, Ted Hoff. The combination of hard science and organizational skills set the stage for what Apple, with Job’s vision and the creative folks around him, was able to do. Let’s also give a big nod to Jack Goldman and Steve Wozniak.  We could go on. But, enough said.

This entry was posted in Business Management, General Interest and tagged , , , , , , , , by Jack Rivkin. Bookmark the permalink.

About Jack Rivkin

Jack Rivkin retired in 2008 as EVP, CIO, Head of Private Asset Management of Neuberger Berman(NB) and from NB's Executive Management Committee. He was also on the Lehman(LB) Council on Climate Change(CC) and the NB CC Fund Advisory Board. He has been engaged with the United Nations and other entities on policy issues related to Private Capital and CC. He is an Associate Fellow of the Asia Society. He has continued on the NB Mutual Fund Board and with his CC responsibilities. He began his investment career in 68 as an analyst at Mitchell Hutchins(MH), and became Director of Research(DOR) there. After Paine Webber(PW) acquired MH, he served as DOR; CFO of PW; CEO of PWMH-the equity trading and investment arm of PW; Chmn of MH Asset Management and President of PW Capital. 87-92 he was DOR and, subsequently, Head of the Worldwide Equities Division of LB. 93-95, he served as a Vice Chairman and DOR at Smith Barney (now Citigroup). He was an EVP with Citigroup Investments 94-01, responsible for private equity investments. He was also an adjunct professor at Columbia University teaching a course in Security Analysis. He joined NB in 2002. He is the co-author of “Risk & Reward—Venture Capital and the Making of America’s Great Industries,” Random House, 1987. He is a regular guest on various media. He is the principal subject in a series of Harvard Business School cases describing his experience as DOR and Equity Head at LB. He has served as a director of a number of private companies and the NYSSA. He is currently a director of Idealab, Dale Carnegie, Operative, World Policy Institute and other private companies. He is a member of the Economic Club of NY, the Anglers Club, Theodore Gordon Fly Fishers, and a lifetime member of Trout Unlimited. He continues to be an active private equity investor when he isn’t fly fishing. Mr. Rivkin earned his Professional Engineering degree from the Colorado School of Mines and his MBA from the Harvard Business School

3 thoughts on “Steve Jobs….and others

    • We all fall short in certain areas, but he raised the bar when it comes to taking the technology that was available and and making it something that expands individual creativity and requires a response from the competition. He wasn’t a Hewlett, Packard or a Noyce. And it is the time to remember those folks. The real legacy remains to be determined.

      • Completely right — I appreciate how he retained control over when features were released, and his attention to detail in order to ensure that the user experience was complete, and that is unrivaled in the industry, still.

        He was able to share the beauty and technology of gadgets to many millions of non-gadget-folks among us!

        Thanks for the reply.

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