Al Gore: Steve Jobs' greatest work was Apple itself

The Apple board member says Jobs leaves behind a world-class executive team that is "hitting on all cylinders" and committed to taking risks.

Al Gore at AsiaD
Al Gore speaking at the AsiaD conference yesterday. Screenshot of AllThingsD video by Jonathan Skillings/CNET

For board member Al Gore, Apple's future is in fine shape in spite of the loss of Steve Jobs--and in large part because of Jobs.

Speaking at the AsiaD conference in Hong Kong yesterday, Gore reminisced about the Apple co-founder and longtime CEO, who died earlier this month at the age of 56. Of all the breakthroughs that Jobs helped bring about, from the Mac to the iPad to Pixar Animation Studios, Gore said, "I actually think his greatest work was Apple itself."

Gore expressed confidence both in the Jobs-era Apple products still in the works and in the leadership that will guide Apple into the post-Jobs era: "There's so many things in the pipeline and the team he built is hitting on all cylinders."

To a question on whether he still expects risk-taking and game-changing efforts from Apple, the former U.S. vice president heaped praise on the company's leaders:

You can look at the executive team and go right across the list and every single one of them is world-class. Every single one of them could be the CEO of a major corporation.

And Jobs would have expected the risk-taking, even if it meant risking a break with his own view of the world, Gore said. "He had said to Tim [Cook, Apple's CEO] and to members of the executive team, 'Don't ask what would Steve have done. Follow your own voice.'"

Jobs was unique, of course, said Gore, who earlier in the week had attended Apple's in-house memorial for Jobs : "He's the kind of guy that comes along once every 250 years."

In the AsiaD talk, Gore also touched on climate change, Current TV, and the state of education and the economy in the U.S.

About the author

Jonathan Skillings is managing editor of CNET News, based in the Boston bureau. He's been with CNET since 2000, after a decade in tech journalism at the IDG News Service, PC Week, and an AS/400 magazine. He's also been a soldier and a schoolteacher, and will always be a die-hard fan of jazz, the brassier the better.

 

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