Even the most hard-hearted members of the business world offered kind (or at the very least admiring) words for Jobs on Thursday. News Corp.‘s (NASDAQ:NWS) embattled CEO Rupert Murdoch, still licking his wounds from the numerous scandals that plagued his company this summer, hailed Jobs. Murdoch called him not just “the greatest CEO of his generation,” but also “one of the most influential thinkers, creators and entrepreneurs of all time.”
Jobs’ death has been a unifying force. Murdoch’s words were strangely reflected in those of Salman Rushdie, the author of The Satanic Verses and The Ground Beneath Her Feet. Where Murdoch used the language of industry to remember Jobs, Rushdie’s language delivered via Twitter was more poetic: “He was one of the great architects of the real.” Steve Jobs’ lasting legacy will be mirrored in the “real” Rushdie describes — the methods with which people communicate that the inventor and businessman so influenced.
Far more people have shared their feelings via the web and used the space to remember how Jobs’ creations personally affected their lives. Colin Meloy, the lead singer of The Decemberists and a musician whose career has been defined by the iPod and iTunes technology Jobs pioneered, said, “My dad brought home a squat, beige Mac in ’84. I played Dark Castle and wrote stories on it. It changed everything. Thanks, Mr. Jobs.”
That says it all. Steve Jobs did indeed change everything, and — more than anything else — the world is grateful for it.