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"Your Time Is Limited, so Don't Waste It" -- Steve Jobs on Death in 2005 Stanford Address (VIDEO)

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You've probably heard this one at least once today, or last night on Twitter: "Stay hungry, stay foolish." A modern mantra, attributed to the departed tech titan Steve Jobs.

Wondering where it came from? It was a speech to college graduates, half a decade ago, which the famous dropout ended with a meditation on death. Here's Jobs starting that passage, after recounting his pancreatic cancer diagnosis, in his now-famous 2005 commencement address to Stanford University:

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don't want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life's change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Stanford put the video in its entirety on YouTube, where it's had more than 6.5 million views.

Suffice it to say there's something in this speech for more than just graduating college students.

As a quick Jobs autobiography, it's a fascinating take -- the man was notoriously private, and it's rare to hear anyone discuss, for example, his early life as an orphan.

And while Jobs' tribulations as a young adult are part of his public legend, Jobs uncharacteristically shares insights from his life that will resonate with people at any stage in life.

Why dropping out of college (while dropping into the courses that really interested him) was one of his greatest decisions ever. How getting fired from Apple was among the best things that happened to him.

And -- this a year after he got the diagnosis that would kill him -- how confronting his mortality crystallized his approach to life.

Continuing from the above passage (emphasis ours):

Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma -- which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

When I was young, there was an amazing publication called The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960's, before personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all made with typewriters, scissors, and polaroid cameras. It was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before Google came along: it was idealistic, and overflowing with neat tools and great notions.

Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: "Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish." It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you.

If you have 15 minutes today, it's more than worth watching. Or, if you're in a rush, read the full transcript.

Just a warning, keep tissues nearby.

(See also: Apple's Steve Jobs Has Died at 56 and Apple Shares On the Rise)
POSITION:  No positions in stocks mentioned.