The visionaries gained fame and wealth a year later for the Apple II, one of the first highly successful mass-produced personal computers.
In 1979, after a tour of PARC, Jobs saw the commercial potential of the Xerox Alto, which was mouse-driven and had a graphical user interface (GUI).
He was the co-founder, chairman, and chief executive officer (CEO) of Apple Inc.; CEO and majority shareholder of Pixar; a member of The Walt Disney Company's board of directors following its acquisition of Pixar; and founder, chairman, and CEO of Ne XT.
Jobs and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak are widely recognized as pioneers of the microcomputer revolution of the 1970s and 1980s.
What was the meaning that he held for so many people, and was that adulation justified or misplaced?
This premise serves as a springboard for a chronicle of Jobs’ life and career that proceeds in more of a thematic than a chronological fashion, and that includes plenty of material from interviews that Jobs gave over the years.
This led to development of the unsuccessful Apple Lisa in 1983, followed by the breakthrough Macintosh in 1984.
The company, which is shortly to join the 100 index of leading companies, is not without its critics.
The not-always-lovable Mr Jobs is still stuck in a greedy-looking share-option “backdating” scandal.
The firm has come under attack for refusing to make its operating-system and music-protection software available to others (a price worth paying, Apple responds, for greater reliability and consistency).
Perhaps one of the most unfortunate but inevitable reactions to Alex Gibney’s “Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine” would be that it’s a “takedown” of the Apple co-founder. Surely, the film subjects Jobs’ cult of personality to such severe scrutiny that it goes a long way toward dismantling it.
But that’s part of a complex portrait that gives as much weight to Jobs’ world-changing talents as to his personal flaws.