Steve Jobs

Steven Paul Jobs (February 24, 1955 – October 5, 2011) was an American businessman, designer and inventor, best known as the co-founder, chairman, and chief executive officer of Apple Inc. He is widely recognized for his great contribution and influence in the field of technology.

Jobs was adopted in infancy, and grew up in Cupertino, California. He dropped out of Reed College and went to work for Atari Corp. where he designed video games. He experimented a lot before he started Apple Computers with Stephen Wozniak in the Jobs' family garage. The first Apple computer, created when Jobs was only 21, changed the idea of a computer from a huge machine used for scientific purposes to a home appliance available for anyone.

Steve Jobs was a co-founder and a chief executive of Pixar Animation Studios and a member of the board of directors of The Walt Disney Company. Jobs significantly contributed to initiating the desktop publishing revolution, especially by means of introducing the LaserWriter and the associated PageMaker software. In 1985 Jobs lost a power struggle with the board of directors, left Apple and founded NeXT, a computer platform development company which specialized in the higher-education and business markets. He was an executive producer of Toy Story (1995). Jobs remained CEO and majority shareholder at 50.1 percent until it was acquired by The Walt Disney Company in 2006, which made Jobs Disney's largest individual shareholder and a member of Disney's Board of Directors. Apple purchased NeXT in 1996 and Jobs was named Apple advisor.

When Apple was undergoing serious difficulties, Jobs took charge of the company and was named "interim CEO" in 1997, or "iCEO" as he joked. Jobs saved Apple from bankruptcy, and made it profitable by 1998. Over the next decade, Steve Jobs supervised the development of the iMac, iTunes, iPod, iPhone, and iPad as well as the company's Apple Retail Stores, iTunes Store and the App Store. The great success of these products and services, and stable financial returns over years, led Apple to become the world's most valuable publicly traded company in 2011. In 2003, Jobs was diagnosed with a pancreas neuroendocrine tumor, which was initially treated. However, he reported a hormone imbalance, underwent a liver transplant in 2009, and continuously lost weight as his health declined. Jobs was on medical leave for most of 2011, resigned as Apple CEO and was elected Chairman of the Board. Steve Jobs died of respiratory arrest related to his metastatic tumor on October 5, 2011. 

Bill Gates

Bill Gates is an American business magnate, investor, philanthropist, and author. He is the former CEO and current chairman of Microsoft, and is frequently ranked among the world’s wealthiest people. He is one of the most influential people in the world.

Bill Gates was born in Seattle, Washington, USA. His father was a Seattle attorney and his mother was a school teacher, chairperson of the United Way charity, and regent of University of Washington. Bill Gates studied at Harvard University where he was working on the programming language BASIC. However, he did not graduate Harvard and left it in his junior year to found Microsoft Corporation, the largest computer software company in the world.

Under his guidance, Microsoft's mission has been to improve software technology, and to make using computers easier, more cost-effective and more enjoyable. One of Microsoft’s biggest successes was the MS-DOS computer operating system that Gates licensed to IBM.

Bill Gates is also the founder of Corbis, which is developing a digital archive of art and photography from public and private collections around the world. He is on the board of directors of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., which invests in companies carrying out diverse business activities.  Gates has also been actively engaged in fighting against software piracy, creating the retail software market.

In 1995 Gates wrote The Road Ahead, which concerned the role of information technology in the future society. The Road Ahead topped the New York Times bestseller list for seven weeks. Since 1994 Bill Gates has been married to Melinda French Gates and they have three children: Jennifer, Rory and Phoebe. The couple is very keen philanthropists and have donated large amounts of money to charitable organizations and research programs through the Bill &Melinda Gates Foundation.  Bill Gates enjoys reading, playing golf and bridge.  

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