Bill Gates

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Bill Gates

William Henry Gates the Third or also known as Bill Gates is the co-founder of the huge Microsoft Corporation. This billionaire was born in Seattle on the 28th of October 1955 and grew up there with his two sisters, Kristi and Libby. His father, William Henry Gates Senior was a prominent Seattle lawyer, and his mother, Mary Maxwell Gates was a schoolteacher at the University of Washington regent and chairwoman of United Way International. His great-grandfather was a state legislator and mayor, and his grandfather was the vice president of a national bank.

Gates attend public elementary school before enrolling in the Lakeside School which is Seattle’s most exclusive preparatory school. During his time at the Lakeside, Gates developed an interest in computers and at the age of 13, he began programming the computer. Bill and a few other students formed the Lakeside Programmers Group, and nearly spent all of their time on the computer writing programs for various purposes. The group was even banned from the computer for a few weeks for hacking into the security program and altering data on the system. Many of the group members ended up working at Microsoft as programmers. Gates graduated from the Lakeside School in 1973. Later, after scoring 1590 out of 1600 on the SAT, he went onto Harvard University.

In 1975, during his junior year, Gates left Harvard to start his own software company, Microsoft with Paul Allen, who had been friend of Gates since childhood. Microsoft was originally a company that wrote applications and languages. They had not written any operating systems when IBM approached them for help on the IBM personal computer.

Seeing an opportunity, Bill Gates purchased the operating system known as CPM DOS from a small software company in Seattle, Washington. He then leased the operating system to IBM as MS-DOS. Initially this seemed like a good deal, but Bill soon realized that the lease agreement gave IBM unrestricted use of DOS. When COMPAQ approached Microsoft about licensing MS-DOS, Microsoft leased it to them on a per PC basis, which was more profitable for Microsoft. IBM was upset that Microsoft was leasing MS-DOS to its competitors, and negotiated for a new Operating system that would only run on IBM computers. Bill Gates tried to sell IBM on the idea of a new project that he was working on called Windows, but when IBM learned that it would run on all IBM PCs and the new IBM clone PCs, they lost interest. IBM wanted an operating system that would only work on IBM computers. Microsoft wrote OS2 for IBM, and ended with exclusive rights to DOS, and Windows. When Microsoft released Windows, Apple sued them claiming that it was a copy of their operating system that ran on Apple computers. Microsoft eventually won the lawsuit. In 1975, Microsoft had yearly revenue of $16,005. In 2000 that number had grown to $22.96 billion, and Microsoft currently employs more than 39,000 people in 60 countries.

Bill is currently chairman and chief software architect of Microsoft Corporation, which makes almost all of the dominant software products used on personal computers today. They make everything from the computer operating system to the applications that people use in daily life. Recently Microsoft has also made a push to dominate the Internet and Business Network Operating systems. Gates was formerly Chief Executive Officer, but recently passed that responsibility on to Steve Ballmer. Bill wanted to get back into programming because he felt that he had drifted away from it. Bill was married to Melinda French Gates in 1994 in Hawaii. They now have two children: a daughter, Jennifer Katharine Gates, born in 1996; and a son, Rory John Gates, born in 1999. Bill likes to read and play golf and bridge.

Extra: Bill Gates Timeline

1955 William Henry Gates III was born to William H. and Mary Maxwell Gates on October 28 shortly after 9 PM in Seattle Washington....
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