10 products that defined Steve Jobs' career

Oct 06, 2011 By PETER SVENSSON , AP Technology Writer
This 1998 file photo provided by Apple, shows Apple CEO Steve Jobs pose for a photo with an iMac computer. Apple on Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2011 said Jobs has died. He was 56. (AP Photo/Apple, Moshe Brakha, File)

(AP) -- Steve Jobs had no formal schooling in engineering, yet he's listed as the inventor or co-inventor on more than 300 U.S. patents. These are some of the significant products that were created under his direction:

1. Apple I (1976) - Apple's first product was a computer for hobbyists and engineers, made in small numbers. designed it, while Jobs orchestrated the funding and handled the marketing.

2. Apple II (1977) - One of the first successful personal computers, the Apple II was designed as a mass-market product rather than something for engineers or enthusiasts. It was still largely Wozniak's design. Several upgrades for the model followed, and the product line continued until 1993.

3. Lisa (1983) - Jobs' visit to Xerox Corp.'s research center in Palo Alto inspired him to start work on the first commercial computer with a graphical user interface, with icons, windows and a cursor controlled by a mouse. It was the foundation for today's computer interfaces, but the Lisa was too expensive to be a commercial success.

4. Macintosh (1984) - Like the Lisa, the Macintosh had a . It was also cheaper and faster and had the backing of a large behind it. People soon realized how useful the graphical interface was for design. That led "desktop publishing," accomplished with a Mac coupled to a , to soon become a sales driver.

5. NeXT computer (1989) - After being forced out of Apple, Jobs started a company that built a powerful workstation computer. The company was never able to sell , but the computer was influential: The world's first Web browser was created on one. Its software also lives on as the basis for today's Macintosh and iPhone operating system.

6. iMac (1998) - When Jobs returned to Apple in 1996, the company was foundering, with an ever shrinking share of the PC market. The radical iMac was the first step in reversing the slide. It was strikingly designed as a bubble of blue plastic that enclosed both the monitor and the computer. Easy to set up, it captured the imagination just as people across the world were having their eyes opened to the benefits of the Internet and considering getting their first home computer.

7. iPod (2001) - It wasn't the first digital music player with a hard drive, but it was the first successful one. Apple's expansion into portable electronics has had vast ramifications. The iPod's success prepared the way for the iTunes music store and the iPhone.

8. iTunes store (2003) - Before the iTunes store, buying digital music was a hassle, making piracy the more popular option. The store simplified the process and brought together tracks from all the major labels. The store became the largest music retailer in the U.S. in 2008.

9. iPhone (2007) - The iPhone did for the phone experience what the Macintosh did for personal computing - it made the power of a smartphone easy to harness. Apple is now the world's most profitable maker of phones, and the influence of the is evident in all smartphones.

10. iPad (2010) - Dozens of companies, including , had created tablet computers before the iPad, but none caught on. The iPad finally cracked the code, creating a whole new category of computer practically by itself.

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El_Nose
not rated yet Oct 07, 2011
No mention of the cash infusion that they accepted from MS to stay alive -- it was perhaps Jobs' best decision to accept the money and keep the company afloat