Photo Credit: Getty Images
"The world has lost a visionary."
So said President Barack Obama in a statement yesterday, reacting to the death of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs from pancreatic cancer at the age of 56. The fact that Obama took time to release a statement about Jobs' passing is indicative of the level of impact the technological innovator has had on our culture.
And Obama wasn't alone in sharing his appreciation for Jobs' contributions to daily life, which include the Mac, the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad. Celebrities -- some who were friends with the icon, others or who just never met him but felt his loss regardless -- released statements or took to Twitter to send their condolences to Jobs' family and to remember his legacy.
Peer and rival Bill Gates was among them. "I'm truly saddened to learn of Steve Jobs' death," the Microsoft founder said in a statement.
Filmmaker Steven Spielberg, meanwhile, had some very flattering things to say about Jobs' place in history: "Steve Jobs was the greatest inventor since Thomas Edison. He put the world at our fingertips."
Jimmy Fallon tweeted a goodbye to Apple's former CEO in the best medium he knew how. "Thank you, Steve Jobs, for all of the fun and amazing ways you made our lives better....Sent from my iPhone," the Late Night host said.
Red State director Kevin Smith compared Jobs to other visionaries of previous generations. "Our parents had JFK, we had Steve Jobs. Edison gave us electricity, Jobs gave us the Jetsons in real life. We lost an icon today. Mourn him," he tweeted.
Anderson Cooper took a step back in time to remember his first Apple purchase. "My first Apple product, the Apple 2E computer," he reminisced over Twitter. "I think that's what it was called."
And Glee star Diana Agron waxed poetic on the loss. "We never met, yet I stand beside members of this giant playground that you discovered for us," she twittered. "We use it every day, never tiring of the sand."
Some stars had actually been lucky enough to have met Jobs earlier in their lives, and shared their experiences with him in their farewell statements.
"Rest In Peace, Steve Jobs. A true genius and kind man," tweeted Shameless star Emmy Rossum. I was lucky to meet him and his family when I was a young child. He will be missed."
Drive star Albert Brooks had also met Jobs previously. "Had the pleasure of working for him and knowing him," he said. "He was our Edison. R.I.P. Steve Jobs."
Even those who hadn't met Jobs were deeply saddened by his loss. "I never thought I could be so busted up about the loss of someone I never met. #stevejobs," tweeted Ashton Kutcher.
Obama really said it the best, though, when he said: "There may be no greater tribute to Steve's success than the fact that much of the world learned of his passing on a device he invented."