A legend passes away!

Steve Jobs, who has quit as CEO not too long ago, passes away.

His passing will be missed by the whole world, as his influence is everywhere.

His foresight has led him to develop the first commercially viable personal computer in the late 70s , the Apple I and II.

I have  a habit of reading Time magazine since my teens, as a way to improve my English   as well as my general knowledge.

I remember I was still a young man in the late seventies, just out of university, when one day, i read in Time magazine about 2 young men who had designed a computer in a garage  which was small enough to be used in homes and small offices. Never did I realise that what I had read about  would be the beginning of personal computers and that my whole life as well as millions of others would be changed by this invention.

The 2 young men were  Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs, who together,  put out the first commercially viable personal computer, the Apple I and later an improved version,  Apple II (picture below).

After reading about the computer, I had wanted to own one . I managed to get  one in the early 80s, as  a gift from my eldest brother, who travelled often overseas then as an engineer businessman and he carted back one Apple II ( from ?HongKong) ,together with a tape drive for storage, for me.

I  can still vaguely remember that the computer had a RAM of only 32K, which is so so small by the present day standard, and the screen was monochrome.

I did learn to do simple programming then,  using a simple program called “BASIC”, and I was able to design a simple program to do simple calculations on the computer.

I also enjoyed tremendously a game called “lode runner”.  It is still available over the internet, and I still have a version in my netbook, and i think it is more fun than other arcade games. My eldest 2 kids grew up playing this game, and my daughter as a small girl could usually beat  me by attaining level 30 and above , while i would be struggling at level 10 and onwards..

It  was well made and lasted for many years. I still have fond memories of that machine; unfortunately, after it broke down and I couldn’t get anyone to fix it then, my wife dumped it as rubbish.

I went on to own PCs  in the XT series, 4086 and 4088. Later , when the XT machines broke down, I migrated to AT 286, 386, 486 and finally 586. Finally, we have the Pentium chips,  and then Pentium 2, duo cores and what have you.

All in, I must have spent a big fortune owning computers and migrating to another and yet another. The money is well worth it since it has  given me a good background on computers and  the related cyberworld, the internet. Among my contemporaries, I was glad that I was one of the more computer savvy ones, and in fact I was one of the earliest one to subscribe  to Jaring which started the first internet service in the country in the early 90s. I was one of the earliest to move onto streamyx broadband from Jaring.  Now I am onto Maxis-Fibre-to-the-home,  downloading games , movies, concerts and TV serials from the various file sharing sites on the internet , as well as blogging and networking.

All these habits of moving up and keeping  in pace with the vast changes in the tech world started with the gadget invented by the 2 Steves in a garage many years ago.

I bring out this point because there are millions  like me, all over the world, who   have Steve Jobs to thank for the gadget he invented and the habits he influenced.

Even among the younger generations, their lives are influenced by Steve.  Many of them have gadgets such as ipods, iphones and the ipads. Even if they don’t own one of these, chances are the handphones they used are influenced by apple , too. Most of the handphones sports a big screen covering the almost the whole of the phone, a hallmark of Steve Jobs’s influence. Then there are itunes and the apps which have given millions the pleasure to live.

To me, he is one who really makes a difference for all of us. Without Apple I and II, perhaps the PC revolution would not be as fast as it has progress.

Nowadays, even though mostly I use a simple netbook run on Windows software( since it can last many hours on one charge compared to other notebooks),  I play games (my favourite is fieldrunners) on an old ipod given to me by my daughter, and I do own  an  apple computer which can run on apple OS as well as windows.

I shall miss Steve Jobs and the innovation that he has brought this world. He has helped make my life , and that of millions of others as well, more meaningful and more purposeful.

May His Soul  Rest in Peace.. Amitabha!  (Steve Jobs is a buddhist!)


19 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Li Li Fa
    Oct 06, 2011 @ 15:54:58

    Truly, the world has lost a brave, and creative visionary.
    Indeed, he has touched many lives around the world via the IT connectivity.
    May his soul rest in peace; his vision be caught on and may it morph into bigger visions.
    May his legend lives on too.


  2. klm
    Oct 06, 2011 @ 20:12:52

    Steve Jobs really knew how to cut the crap from the important. This is a story told by an ex boss, so it is true. At one time he was running Apple’s operation in South East Asia. Mahatir at that time was the superstar of Information Highway and Multimedia Super Corridor, and could meet anyone in Silicon Valley. So the local agent in Malaysia, a well known crony company tried to set up a meeting between Mahatir and Steve Jobs. Steve Jobs did not turn up. Steve must had known something we didn’t, at least not then.


  3. guest
    Oct 06, 2011 @ 20:31:51

    I saw the text of his Stanford U commencement address for 2005; it was one from the heart, I felt.

    About his ideas that touched life, well, one come to now after all the emotion of the earlier day reading of his passing: a Chinese guy who is so desperate to own an Ipad that he sold his kidney to get one comes to mind now.

    Anyway, r.i.p. Steve.


  4. streetfighter
    Oct 06, 2011 @ 22:46:38

    Steve Job advised U students to “Stay hungry.Stay foolish”
    Monsterball shoud keep on ranting and babbling to stay foolish, listening to his heart and no one else.


  5. guest
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 00:35:04

    Leave Monsterball alone.


  6. C++
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 01:52:16

    Bye Bye Dear Mentor…

    By today standard, everything is colorful and well built. Thanks to Steve Jobs for innovation, ideas and vision…

    By the way… from the moment I heard the news (early morning)… I’m totally speechless… except explaining to my kids who is this man… the thing he bring to the IT world… especially the “Mouse” …

    I do own quite a wide range of computer from Apple II, Atari ST, Commodore Amiga, Neatron XT 8086, Wearnes 8088, and all Intel X86 range including Motorola 68030 processor…. and Operating System from CP/M, DOS, Windows, Unix, Linux, MacOS, Irix and OS/2.

    May God bless Steve Jobs soul..


  7. cilipadi
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 09:55:56

    Drop out doesn’t means he or she is lousy
    Steve Jobs has proven to us
    Being innovative is what matters in this century

    People will see Buddhism differently from now on
    Since he is a Buddhist
    Buddhism is really something

    Drop out makan cili, innovative rasa pedas


  8. merlion
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 10:40:34

    A towering American in life, a legend in the afterlife. How does the “glocal” Malaysian stack up against Steve Jobs? Like crap apples against the real thing.


  9. Dr Hsu
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 11:32:10

    Some of Steve’s views:

    “Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking,” Jobs said. “Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice.”

    and this is Steve:
    “I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5 cent deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the seven miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple,” he said. “I loved it.”

    He was a fan of the Beatles, who also embraced spirituality and made a similar pilgrimage to India. Jobs told television’s “60 Minutes” he modeled his own business after the rock group.

    “They were four guys that kept each other’s negative tendencies in check; they balanced each other,” he said. “And the total was greater than the sum of the parts. Great things in business are not done by one person, they are done by a team of people.

    Former Pepsico President John Sculley, who eventually fired Jobs, said walking into Jobs’ apartment had the same design feel.

    “I remember going into Steve’s house, and he had almost no furniture in it,” Sculley said in a 2010 interview with Businessweek.”He just had a picture of Einstein, whom he admired greatly, and he had a Tiffany lamp and a chair and a bed. He just didn’t believe in having lots of things around, but he was incredibly careful in what he selected.” … compared this with our ministers .. luxurious bungalows, diamonds, etc etc

    His greatest legacy is to free people from dogma and give normal people the computing powers, the use of which was dominated by big businesses and big brother…He helped giving rise to people’s power that we see today.
    It was his initial role in making the PC available to individuals to give them computer power,” said Thurman. “He was democratizing computer power. It was his own inspiration of things and not accepting the status quo and breaking through the power of the people.”

    italics is this blog’s opinion.


  10. klm
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 12:29:25

    Steve Jobs quotes had many Zen like philosophy behind the words. Was he into Zen Buddhism?


  11. Dr Hsu
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 14:33:03


    Ya, he was into zen apparently.

    Go to read this article in Yahoo before they delete it;

    Steve Jobs Mantra rooted in buddhism


  12. cilipadi
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 16:28:42

    Free people from dogma
    You have to learn Buddhism this way
    Unlike Religions of God
    No Bible, no Quran, no Kitab
    That even one found illogical verses
    You still need to follow
    Because God says so, they argue
    How to free of dogma then?
    As if one can’t think, got brain like no brain
    That made Buddhism his choice, Steve Jobs’ choice
    Zen or non-Zen, Buddhism is still Buddhism

    Quran makan cili, Bible rasa pedas?

    (please don’t be offended some of you, think out of the box, free yourselves from dogma)


  13. klm
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 16:40:44

    cilipadi. From the aesthetics point of view, Zen is different for other branches of Buddhism. Zen seeks clarity and beauty from simplicity. SImple is good. SImple is beautiful. But beauty from simplicity is the most difficult thing. It takes a genius to be able to achieve it.


  14. aiz
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 17:37:40

    Steve Jobs.. a conqueror of ideas of modern history who has made a great contribution to mankind with so feeble means: Your greatness of purpose; your smallness of means; your faith in success; your forbearance in victory, and your triumph after death will certainly move millions of people.


  15. Ellese
    Oct 08, 2011 @ 06:35:49


    Are you giving me a write on our budget. It’s an interesting budget. But if you do can you compare with pr alternative budget. It’s imperative we move to a debate about principles and stands on the budget. Right now both bn and pr making general sweeping statements of each others budget just to create a perception. Were tired of this. And they think we can’t think and analyse.


  16. Dr Hsu
    Oct 08, 2011 @ 09:40:40

    this thread is not suitable to discuss budget. i will start a new post immediately for you guys to discuss it, but i need time to go throught he details before i can really comment on the finer points of the budget.


  17. Dr Hsu
    Oct 27, 2011 @ 12:25:35

    a blog reader emailed to me the link below and asked me to comment on it. It is about whether early treatment would have enabled Steve Jobs to live longer.

    This was my reply to him via email, but I feel that i would like to share with all of you too.

    The link is: http://www.quora.com/Steve-Jobs/Why-did-Steve-Jobs-choose-not-to-effectively-treat-his-cancer?srid=eys

    My reply to him as followed:
    “”Steve was in a way quite lucky since his pancreatic tumour was discovered relatively early, and his was a type that soulc be treated if discovered early. The time lapse before he agreed to the operation was crucial… It would have allowed the cancer to spread to the liver and even though he had that part of liver removed, once cancer cells had metastasized, it would not just involve liver alone; once there is liver involvement, some of the cancer cells would invariably have gone to other sites, and once that stage is reached, whatever treatment would only buy time.

    Had he gone for an early operation, he might still be alive, and the course of his cancer might have been different.

    Having said so, as a doctor, I would say that Steve had the right to decide whether he should try alternative medicine .. I have no objection for alternative medicine , but normally I would encourage them to take alternative medicine as well as the normal treatment as prescribed by doctors. I would only encourage them to go for alternative treatment alone, when the patient is already in late stages at the time of discovery, eg, 3rd or 4th stage. since at those stages, normal medical treatment would only be palliative..

    There are actually some cases which I have come across who were on herbal treatment and had lived for more than 5 years while on herbal medicine…It could be due to the herbal treatment, as well as other fatcors, including the patient’s own immune response, but overall, most who have undergone herbal treatment do not last 5 years. In evidence-based medicine, we normally see how the majority response to the treatment, rather than the results of one or two persons.

    Anyway, the case of Steve Jobs is now academic.. whether he would have survived longer had he resorted to early removal is theorectical… As a buddhist, I thik Steve must have view death differently..And death is a path everyone of us have to go through, in order to move to other realms of existence.””


  18. sally
    Oct 28, 2011 @ 10:48:28

    Dear Dr Hsu,

    It is just a coincidence that I have been diagnosed with pancreatic tumour/insulinoma which is not malignant but which is causing a lot of havoc to my daily biorhythm. Headache, nausea, double vision, sudden loss of energy, hypo attacks are normal occurrence. At times I am so weak and lethargic that I can’t even remember my spouse name and has to remain in bed for a few days. I have been in and out of hospitals and the only thing I have not done is open surgery to remove my pancreas. I am trying spiritual and alternative medicine now.

    My doctor said I can go into a coma anytime and may never wake up. I think he is quite right because I have collapsed many times.. I want to thank you for your therapeutic words “… And death is a path everyone of us have to go through, in order to move to other realm of existence.”

    The latest I found out from the internet is ‘cannabis’… which I am tempted to have a go…



  19. Dr Hsu
    Oct 28, 2011 @ 12:48:46

    my sympathy for having such a condition. If the tumour is not inoperable ( since yours is benign chances are it is operable), surgical operation can be curative and should take care of your problem.


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