Steve Jobs – The Inspirational Life Story Of Steve Jobs, The Fruit Company That Changed Our World – Gregory Watson


Steve Jobs - The Inspirational Life Story Of Steve Jobs, The Fruit Company That Changed Our World

Even though I had already read Walter Isaacson’s comprehensive biography on Steve Jobs, I still wanted to read the shorter biography written by Gregory Watson about the greatest inventor of our times, the legendary Steve Jobs. I admire the man as much as or more than the Apple users do. I had the pleasure of using an Apple Macintosh computer at my mentor Mr. Donald Gaminitillake’s house and ever since I fell in love with Apple products. But right now, the only Apple product I use is iTunes Windows version as I do not have access to the other Apple devices.

“Steve Jobs – The Inspirational Life Story Of Steve Jobs, The Fruit Company That Changed Our World” gives us an account of Job’s life and that of the Apple Inc. in a shorter and sweeter way. The book takes the reader through Job’s childhood full of mischief and at times disagreeable & offensive practices. It takes us through an exciting journey through Job’s humble beginnings to a tech and business giant. A lot of ups and downs hampered his success during early years of his career. The man was so obstinate that he would not listen to anybody else but to his heart. He is not a man who can continue relationships, be it with his fiancée, daughter, a colleague or a member of a board of directors of his own company. As a result, he had to leave the very company he cofounded with his colleague Steve Wozniak. Jobs did not lose much with that terrible act by the board but Apple Inc. and the rest of the world did. Being away from Apple Inc. for a ten-year period affected the company in a way that was devastating to the consumers, shareholders, coworkers, the Board of Directors and the rest of the world. Ultimately, the Board of Directors had to go and coax Jobs to rejoin the company and save it. He not only saved the company from a near bankruptcy, he made it the world’s biggest and the most profitable tech company.

The author tells us how Jobs revived the company by introducing a range of products that included iPod, iTouch, iPhone, iPad, iMac, Macbook, etc. while discontinuing the products that were less profitable like Apple printers, scanners, modems, etc. and streamlining the earlier mentioned product line.

Finally the author briefly discusses about Job’s ill-health due to pancreatic cancer, which attacked him at his prime as an inventor and a businessman. How many more inventions would he have invented had he lived a few more years?

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Horizon Lanka Website’s Second Edition in 2002


Horizon Lanka Website's second edition in 2002

Horizon Lanka Website’s second edition in 2002

This was the homepage of the second edition of the Horizon Lanka http://www.horizonlanka.org website I created in February, 2002 – 14 years ago. It was this version of our website brought us both local and international fame. Many said it is clean and cute, but people could not say it was like Google home because Google was not this famous then. (People used Yahoo and AltaVista to search those days.) It was mainly due to unconditional support extended to me by my boss Dian Gomes and colleagues Ransith Fernando and Gamunu Wickramasingha of Slimline, a fully owned subsidiary of MAS Holding, that enabled me to enjoy unlimited and uninterrupted Internet – at a time it was a luxury limited to only for few people – that helped me design this website.

Horizon Lanka Website - Second Edition

Horizon Lanka Website – Second Edition

I learnt web designing first in 2001 from Mr. Donald Gaminitillake – not to mention Mrs. Bhadra Gaminitillake’s hot milk coffees till late hours. Mr. Gaminitillake hates Windows and I was “forced to :-)” do the first version of the Horizon Lanka website in 2000 with an Apple Mac which had only Japanese operating system and the other software. I do not know any Japanese despite my two trips to Japan. The first Horizon Lanka website was designed with stubborn Netscape Composer https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Netscape_Composer given as part of Netscape Communicator https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Netscape_Communicator. This second version of the Horizon Lanka website was designed (again with Mr. Gaminitillake’s guiding and Mrs. Gaminitllake’s hot milk coffee) with Adobe GoLive https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adobe_GoLive, another hot web designing tool those days but nobody else I met knew what this was. This was much easier than Adobe Dreamweaver but Adobe did away with GoLive after buying out Macromedia Dreamweaver.

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 - Dream Computer Room

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 – Dream Computer Room

I can still remember what Ranjith Gunarathne, then a freelance journalist, wrote about us in the ICT monthly “.com” published by Shelton Manage, an entrepreneurial publisher who took a lot of risks to be part of the ICT field at a time only few dared to. Those who dared, people like Shelton and N. P. Wijerathna were fearlessly hustled by some up to a point that the former two was almost forced to leave the field.

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 - Computer Club

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 – Computer Club

It was veteran journalist Gamini Akmeemana of Daily Mirror that wrote about Horizon Lanka first http://www.horizonlanka.org/in-the-media/ips-1999/ and Ranjith Gunarathne was the first http://www.horizonlanka.org/in-the-media/dotcom-2002/ to write about us in a Sinhala magazine. I adore both these articles to date and could ‘almost’ read both the reports by heart.

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 - Chootimenike

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 – Chootimenike

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 - Chootimahaththaya

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 – Chootimahaththaya

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 - Butterflies

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 – Butterflies

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 - Nanda Wanninayaka

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 – Nanda Wanninayaka

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 - Parents

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 – Parents

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 - Courage

Horizon Lanka Website Second Edition 2002 – Courage

 

 

 

 

Windows, Apple, Linux and Me


I have been using Microsoft OS’s since 1999. First I worked with Microsoft Windows 95. Later I found a laptop with Microsoft Windows 3.1 and kind of enjoyed it. Next was Windows 98 which I used for quite some time even after the advent of Microsoft Millennium Edition. Then came the XP I revere most even today. My relationship with Microsoft Vista was too short and now I am using Windows 7 but don’t see much innovations there compared to Windows XP. Now I am waiting for Windows 8 to come. Hope at least that will bring some features that would take the world by storm.

I have used Apple Mac with Mr. Donald Gaminitillake in 2000. I learnt Photoshop and my first web designing lessons from Mr. Gaminitillake with his computer. He had a Japanese OS of Mac and I had to fight a hard battle to learn with it as I didn’t know any Japanese. But I was able to design the first version of Horizon website with a Mac with his support.

My love affair with Linux is with a lot of disturbances. I went to Ubuntu website and ordered free CDs and they reached me but I was scared to install it as I thought Windows would be affected. 3 CDs went into waste.

Next Revantha Udugampola gave me a used PC and a CD with Ubuntu OS while I was in Badulla in mid-2006. I ran it as a live CD and worked a little but not convinced to install it as the default OS. I was scared to install it with dual boot option as I thought Windows would be affected.

Anuruddha Rathnaweera and the company of FOSS (Free and Open Source Software) visited Horizon Lanka on October 21, 22, 2006 and did several lessons on Linux and related software but I was not convinced to go up to an extent of installing Linux at Horizon’s computers. But some students mastered the game and use FOSS even today.

Danishka Navin of Sinhala Firefox fame wanted to send me a Hanthana Linux version when I was in Anuradhapura but the CD never reached me as something happened when it went to a friend’s friend and got lost on the way. He again brought me a DVD after I came to Colombo and I tried to install it in a laptop with Windows Vista but it never permitted me to install it. I tried several times and gave it up.

I brought the laptop to Colombo and again tried to install it with a friend of mine who is a Linux user for some time but the DVD was missing this time and there was only the DVD case with me. I can’t remember where I left the DVD.

Yesterday, since there was a Refresh Colombo event in Colombo and I decided to attend, I left few messages in Twitter asking any attendee to bring me a Linux or Ubuntu DVD as that laptop was giving some problems. It would take a long time to boot up and will give funny responses to my commands. I wanted to reinstall the shift to another OS.

Gaveen Prabhasara ‏@gaveen had seen my tweet and promised to send me a copy of Linux with Jude Fernando @judesfernando. I collected the set of CDs from Jude at the Refresh Colombo event. Gaveen had sent me Linux Mint, Ubuntu and Fedora OS’s and I tried to install Mint but it stuck on the way. Then I tried Ubuntu and it worked perfectly well. But Alas! The keys in QWERTY line of the keyboard didn’t work this time. The problem persisted even before I installed Ubuntu but I though it will be solved with the new OS. Now I have to wait till the keyboard is repaired to use Ubuntu. I feel that though I like Linux, Linux doesn’t like me.

Nanda in Cairo, Egypt


 

nanda horseback

In front of a pyramid in Gizza, Egypt

I had the blessings (and of course, the financial support) of Mr. Donald and Mrs. Bhadra Gaminitillake, and an invitation from I*EARN to attend a workshop at Cairo. LAcNet also assisted me a lot. This meant an opportunity to see the second of the Seven Wonders of the World.

Difference between this tour with the previous one was having a good companion who had a lot of humour to share. That was Mr. Bernard Jesuthasan, an English teacher from St. Peter’s College, Colombo, and travelling with him was high fun.

Nanda in Beijing, China


nanda chinese twins

With two Chinese twin sisters inside the Forbidden City, Beijing. Only twins can understand the word “sister” or “brother” in China with its ‘one child policy.’

Thanks to LAcNet, I*EARN (International Education and Resource Network), and Mr. Donald Gaminitillake and Mrs. Bhadra Gaminitillake, I had a rare opportunity to visit China. I was so excited since I had not seen even an airport when I heard that I had been selected to represent Sri Lanka at the 7th I*EARN international conference in Beijing in July 2000. I thought a little before departure about how my life had changed during a short period of time.

Tour to Beijing was an exciting experience for me. Ever since I came to the Katunaike International Airport in Sri Lanka I was so excited and inquisitive about flying by air. Since I’m from a very rural area in Sri Lanka it took me around 12 years to see the nearest town, Anuradhapura and almost 18 years to see Colombo, the commercial capital of Sri Lanka. So flying high was a dream, which I never thought would come true.

I will add my experiences in China here one by one.