The NYT has some nice context on Barack Obama's current ratings. Just prior to taking office, 79% of the country is optimistic about America's future, ten points higher than the average of his five most recent predecessors and fifteen above those of the White House's current occupant. The question's wording is somewhat muddled and doesn't directly ask about approval or favorability, but it is roughly in line with other polling that shows Obama faring substantially better than any president since Richard Nixon.
There are any number of possible reasons for that ten point gap. For now, let's just enjoy it.