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Apple Businesses

Steve Jobs Takes Leave of Absence From Apple 429

Posted by timothy
from the get-well-soon dept.
An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from Network World: "A number of sites are reporting that Apple's CEO Steve Jobs is taking a leave of absence till June at least. Speculation over Jobs' possibly failing health has run rampant in the past few weeks. Prior to the recent MacWorld show, Jobs said he had a hormone deficiency that had caused him to dramatically lose weight. In a memo today Jobs told workers his health issues are more complex than he thought." Reader Bastian227 adds a link to this letter from Steve Jobs on Apple's website, which also says that Tim Cook will be responsible for daily operations, though Jobs will remain involved with major strategic decisions.
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Steve Jobs Takes Leave of Absence From Apple

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  • June... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by jcr (53032) <jcr.mac@com> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @06:55PM (#26457219) Journal

    That's usually when WWDC happens. I think he's planning on doing that keynote.

    -jcr

  • Cancer (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @07:00PM (#26457297)

    It is a sad day.

    6 Months = Chemo

    Here's to a long life for Mr. Jobs.

  • by jcr (53032) <jcr.mac@com> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @07:01PM (#26457311) Journal

    I expect another record earnings report for Q1, so I'm grabbing as many February $95 calls as I can afford.

    -jcr

  • Nah. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jcr (53032) <jcr.mac@com> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @07:05PM (#26457389) Journal

    If he was going for six months of chemo, he wouldn't be talking about returning in six months. More like a year. I think he's taking the leave between now and the next major event, which would be WWDC.

    -jcr

  • by Phroggy (441) <slashdot3.phroggy@com> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @07:15PM (#26457599) Homepage

    When he first came back to Apple in 1998, he was known as the iCEO, because for awhile it was thought that he would only be interim CEO until they could find a replacement.

  • Re:Sell quick (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Fulcrum of Evil (560260) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @07:29PM (#26457863)

    Not that I recall - the major theme that I recall is that millionaires tend to be the winners of a high risk bet - entrepreneurism. They're also people of normal taste and lifestyle, with a large difference between what they bring in and what they spend.

    My original point was that, on average, people don't value what they're given, just what they have to work for.

  • Re:Sell quick (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Bryan Ischo (893) * on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @07:34PM (#26457957) Homepage

    I'm already heavily diversified. The amount I have in 401K is many times larger than the amount I have in AAPL. And AAPL has done much, much better for me over the last four years than my 401K has done. I kinda wish I'd put it all in AAPL to be honest :/

    I could spend time researching and trying to figure out what would be a good stock to complement AAPL in a diversification scheme, and sell off half of my AAPL when it gets back up to $100 (which it will, I have no doubt) as you have suggested. But that just seems like too much *work* when the only company I can really say for certain that I have a sincere belief in the future of is AAPL. I'll just keep it all in AAPL. I'm still confident that when my daughter is ready to go to college in 16 years, AAPL will have done quite well for me.

  • by Ralph Spoilsport (673134) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @08:01PM (#26458331) Journal
    Dylan Thomas

    Do not go gentle into that good night,
    Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

    Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
    Because their words had forked no lightning they
    Do not go gentle into that good night.

    Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
    Their frail deeds might have danced in a green
    bay Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
    Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
    And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
    Do not go gentle into that good night.

    Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
    Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

    And you, my father, there on the sad height,
    Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
    Do not go gentle into that good night.
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

  • Re:What's changed? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mosb1000 (710161) <mosb1000@mac.com> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @08:04PM (#26458377)
    "Good" leadership requires an absence of other leadership. Trust me, there is no one else at that company right now who can do Steve's job. He would have gotten rid of them long ago. The fact that the company is running so well, after completely reinventing it's business, tells the story. Another person like Steve would have torn the company apart.

    They will turn the company over to a big-name, high-priced CEO and the company will live or die based on the ability of the board to select the right person (random chance).
  • Re:Simple Advice (Score:3, Interesting)

    by iocat (572367) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @08:28PM (#26458689) Homepage Journal
    Isn't Steve Jobs vegan? Maybe he should try eating a steak or some fries. I still remember when my anemic, scrawny, vegetarian girlfriend left the doctor and came home crying becuase the doctor told her "You need to start eating animal protein, you're anemic and you're not paying enough attention to your diet to maintain a vegetarian lifestyle." He also told her to put salt on all her food to increase her blood pressure, and advised her to eat red meat if she could.

    Man, how I wanted to go that salt-and-red-meat-perscribing doctor! Anyway now she eats hamburgers. Everyone won.

  • by SerpentMage (13390) <ChristianHGross@@@yahoo...ca> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @08:31PM (#26458745)

    I am in the market and write trading systems, and could not have said it better myself.

    The thing about Steve Jobs and these sorts of leaders is when to let go. Lou Gerstner brought back IBM from the dead. Then he let go. IBM is still alive and kicking.

    Nokia's past CEO made Nokia what it was and then he let go. Nokia is still alive and kicking.

    Microsoft is an example of how one half let's go and the other half does not. I am actually much more pessimistic with Microsoft than Apple.

    In the past Apple lacked execution. They had great ideas, but poor execution. Now Apple has execution, and it is NOT STEVE JOBS that did the execution. Think about it, how well did Apple execute with Steve Jobs previously? Or how about Next? NOT AT ALL! What was different this time is that Steve Jobs built a team...

    Ideas are a dime a dozen. The ability to execute on the idea is what makes the difference... And that Apple can do...

  • Buy buy buy (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Fished (574624) <amphigory@gmail.ELIOTcom minus poet> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @08:50PM (#26458995)
    I'm going to buck the trend, and say "buy buy buy". Let me put it this way: on the one hand, Steve Jobs is seriously ill, and may be out of the picture. On the other hand:
    1. Apple has got the best operating system available, stable, and for the moment feature complete.
    2. The iPhone has a nice lead over the competition. The BB Storm seems to be in the process of failing to be an iPhone killer, and while its too soon to say on the Palm Pre, I do notice that they are now selling iPhone's at Walmart. That says something important about demand.
    3. iTunes store just made a major step forward that gave them feature parity with their competition, at a time when they're still ahead in market share.
    4. Apple's brand still has a lot of "shiny gloss to it
    5. Jobs going might be a *good* thing, because it might open up the path for Apple to offer OSX to other manufacturers. In the short term, this is admittedly risky, since it could cannabilize hardware sales. But, if done right... software is awesome to sell, because the marginal cost approaches zero. And let's not forget that there are a number of other products (iLife, iWork, Final Cut, ProTools, etc.) that could benefit from OSX being more widely deployed.

    I just don't see that Jobs going changes the fundamentals of the company all that much. I think Apple at the current price is a great buy, and if it tanks tomorrow, it is a great buy. Time to take some money out of bonds :)

  • you bullshit (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Uberbah (647458) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @10:44PM (#26460329)

    I'm kind of sick of facts

    Fixed that for you. Facts:

    1. Apple was the first to use a micro hard drive.
    2. Everything else was either a tiny flash memory player (64 megs) or used a heavy desktop drive.
    3. Apple used 400 Mbps Firewire when everyone else used 11 Mbps USB 1.1.
    4. They had a good hardware/software interface.

    As to point #4, I remember a nice Penny Arcade strip from way back (which unfortunately I can't find right now) where Jonathan asks Tycho how well Musicmatch staked up against iTunes. It went something like this:

    Tycho: Imagine iTunes as a fresh orange, glistening with morning dew...

    Johnathan: Okay...."
    Tycho: And Musicmatch is a bag filled with dog poop.
    Johnathan: Yuck! Dog poop isn't even food!
    Tycho: Exactly.

  • Re:June... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anarchitect_in_oz (771448) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @11:29PM (#26460721)
    Well news like this an easy chance for investors to sell short for a bit of profit taking. So will be seeing ups and down as the another 10% gets priced in.
  • by DrXym (126579) on Thursday January 15, 2009 @06:17AM (#26463445)
    If the company is sound, this will be a short term drop follwed by a recovery. If you own shares, and think AAPL is sound without Jobs, then selling makes no sense. Instead, you should be buying the discounted shares in anticipation of a recovery, which is what strong companies do.

    The problem with Apple, is that the stock price is sustained by hype. Hype for cool new products. Fortunately or unfortunately for Apple, the hype is mostly generated by Steve Jobs. If he goes, the price of the company is going to drop and it won't recover unless Apple can somehow reinstate the hype.

    Aside from Jobs I suspect that the economic climate and the market oversaturation / stagnation of phones, computers, mp3 players isn't going to help the company any. Apple products have generally commanded a premium for their styling and their perceived quality over competitors, but the reality is that advantage has disappeared. Every market they compete in has many, many comparable alternatives and more often than not they are cheaper too. Even markets which are still opening up such as digital movies have many alternatives. Apple screwed up bigtime with the underpowered Apple TV and I doubt they will be able to recover sufficiently to dominate movies the way they enjoyed with music.

FORTRAN is a good example of a language which is easier to parse using ad hoc techniques. -- D. Gries [What's good about it? Ed.]

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