In 1986, Steve Jobs sidelined by the company he had founded, Jobs sold all but one of his shares in Apple. Around the same time, Jobs founded another computer company, NeXT Computer. The NeXT workstation was technologically advanced, but was never able to break into the mainstream mainly owing to its high cost.
Though the NeXT technology played a large role in catalyzing three unrelated events:
- The World Wide Web. Tim Berners-Lee developed the original World Wide Web system at CERN on a NeXT workstation.
- Jobs' insistence that average people should be able to write custom "mission-critical" applications formed the basis of Interface Builder, which Berners-Lee utilized to do just that — by writing a program entitled "WorldWideWeb 1.0".
- NeXT computers were used in the development of the computer game Doom.
- The return of Apple Computer. Apple's reliance on ancient software and internal mismanagement, particularly its inability to release a major operating system upgrade, had brought it near bankruptcy in the early-to-mid 1990s.
- Jobs' progressive stance on Unix underpinnings was considered overly ambitious and somewhat backward in the 1980s, but his choice ultimately became an expandable, solid foundation for an operating system. Apple would later acquire this software and, under Jobs' leadership, experience a renaissance.