Steve Jobs shaped my career more than any other single person. In 1977 at age eleven I started on the Apple ][ by learning to write programs in Basic and 6502 assembly language. Thanks to that early exposure I found my career path and got my first full-time programming job when I was fourteen. I learned 68000 assembly and C when the Mac came out. I learned Objective-C when the NeXT cube came out, and I got to work (play, really) with a host of other amazing technologies along the way.
But far more importantly, in those early years I became an ardent student of how a man’s passion can become manifest in his work. Through the years, Steve also showed me over and over what it looks like to successfully meld technology, art, and business— and present them together with utter simplicity.
The lessons I learned (and continue to master) by studying the work of Steve and his amazing colleagues at Apple and Pixar have been incredibly valuable to me personally and professionally. Though I never met him, Steve Jobs was my mentor from afar… and I will miss him.