×

Announcing: Slashdot Deals - Explore geek apps, games, gadgets and more. (what is this?)

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!

Bill Gates Opens Up About Steve Jobs

samzenpus posted about a year and a half ago | from the what-did-he-say dept.

Microsoft 294

Nerval's Lobster writes "Former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates displayed a bit of emotion when talking to CBS's 60 Minutes about Steve Jobs. The interview didn't focus entirely on the relationship between the two men, with most of its running time devoted instead to Gates's charitable efforts. But when the conversation shifted to their last meeting before Jobs's death from cancer in 2011, Gates—normally so cerebral—seemed a bit sad. 'When he was sick I got to go down and spend time with him,' Gates said, describing their meeting as 'forward looking.' Jobs spent a portion of their time together showing off designs for his yacht, which he would never see completed—something that Gates defended when the interviewer seemed a little bit incredulous. 'Thinking about your potential mortality isn't very constructive,' he said. Gates also praised Steve Jobs's marketing and design skills: 'He understood, he had an intuitive sense for marketing that was amazing.' In contrast to his subtle—and not so subtle—digs at the iPad over the years, Gates conceded that Apple had 'put the pieces together in a way that succeeded' with regard to tablets. Gates's magnanimity toward his former rival and Apple is a reflection, perhaps, of his current position in life: it's been nearly five years since his last full-time day at Microsoft, and all of his efforts seem focused on his philanthropic endeavors. He simply has no reason to rip a rival limb from limb in the same way he did as Microsoft CEO."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

must... protect.... god... (4, Funny)

alphatel (1450715) | about a year and a half ago | (#43711819)

insert Bill Gates slam here
insert Steve Jobs supreme being statement here
*phew* day saved.

Sent from my AT&T iPad

Re:must... protect.... god... (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712001)

"Death is the great equalizer. In his pale presence they forgot their old squabbles and jealousies..."
Norman Douglas, South Wind

Seems fitting.

Re:must... protect.... god... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712375)

Seems like you forgot to upgrade to the new "imprisoning Platinum Asylum of the Damned 4"... HERETIC! BURN HIM! SMITE HIM WITH LUMIAS!

Re:must... protect.... god... (4, Funny)

FatdogHaiku (978357) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712589)

SMITE HIM WITH LUMIAS!

I've got to change my default font, I first read that as "SMITE HIM WITH LLAMAS!" which was of course incorrect... a slightly amusing visual but incorrect none the less.

Re:must... protect.... god... (4, Funny)

Dins (2538550) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712625)

I've got to change my default font, I first read that as "SMITE HIM WITH LLAMAS!" which was of course incorrect...

I would pay good money to see someone smited (smitten?) with llamas.

Re:must... protect.... god... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712673)

I've got to change my default font, I first read that as "SMITE HIM WITH LLAMAS!" which was of course incorrect...

I would pay good money to see someone smited (smitten?) with llamas.

Smote

Re:must... protect.... god... (3, Funny)

dsvick (987919) | about a year and a half ago | (#43713035)

According to http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/smitten?s=t [reference.com] , you're ok with smitten. However you should probably be a bit more specific about which definition you mean. One would be rather amusing to see, the other sort of disgusting in a beastial sort of way

And, I'm not sure the llamas would appreciate either

Re:must... protect.... god... (-1)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712497)

insert Bill Gates slam here ... insert Steve Jobs supreme being statement here

Neither, just a big "who cares". There are 37,000 people in the US who die every year from pancreatic cancer. I'm sure the vast majority have friends, or even former rivals, who aren't happy about their often premature deaths. Why am I supposed to care about such an odd couple named Jobs and Gates more than any others? If I cared about this crap, I'd read People magazine in some waiting room. At least they have pictures.

Coming soon! (4, Funny)

Kenja (541830) | about a year and a half ago | (#43711857)

Microsoft Yacht(tm).

Re:Coming soon! (4, Funny)

avandesande (143899) | about a year and a half ago | (#43711913)

Not square enough. Barge?

Re:Coming soon! (5, Funny)

OhSoLaMeow (2536022) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712411)

Not square enough. Barge?

As long as it doesn't have rounded corners.

Re:Coming soon! (2)

Bigby (659157) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712249)

Apple iBoat (because Yacht is too specific)

Re:Coming soon! (2)

YoungManKlaus (2773165) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712271)

ahem, iirc. it was Steve who took pride in stealing other's ideas ;)

Re:Coming soon! (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712455)

ahem, iirc. it was Steve who took pride in stealing other's ideas ;)

A particular irony with Microsoft is that in many cases, MS Research develops a technology, licenses it (unbeknownst to the masses) to a 3rd party, and later releases a product with the same capability and is accused of copying. Most of what MSR does is licensed that way, and a not-inconsequential portion of it eventually comes back.

That's why very interesting tech, like the Courier and the adaptive keyboard that made the media rounds a couple years ago, never get to market. Something is done with a partner, and that partnership ends before a product hits the market. Microsoft keeps the IP and maybe licenses it in the future, maybe not. That's why they spend $10B a year in research and rack in a huge amount of revenue from the IP that comes out of it.

Re:Coming soon! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712643)

ahem, iirc. it was Steve who took pride in stealing other's ideas ;)

Sure, but now a yacht with rounded corners? There's a patent (pending) for that!

Competition is often complex. (4, Insightful)

jellomizer (103300) | about a year and a half ago | (#43711895)

We hear and see stories about bitter company rivals. However at the same time they are also partners.
For the most part it is business it isn't personal.
In areas where they are competing in the same spot, they will be quite bitter rivals, however if a different product supports the other company they will be best friends.

Microsoft Fought OS's while partnered in Office.

Re:Competition is often complex. (4, Insightful)

SJHillman (1966756) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712007)

You see the same thing among lawyers... they may be bitter rivals in court, but then go out for drinks and have a few laughs afterwards. You have to figure two people in direct competition will probably have more in common with each other than with another random person. Just because they are professional rivals doesn't mean they can't have a great personal relationship.

Re:Competition is often complex. (2)

alen (225700) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712081)

kind of like athletes?

chances are these people went to school together or have friends in common and see each other at holidays or common functions

i've known officers in the army who trained each other in west point and ended up in the same unit or assuming command of a unit from a former upper classman

Re:Competition is often complex. (2)

Hognoxious (631665) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712599)

Hardly the same thing. Athletes often have friends on rival teams, but officers aren't usually pals with their counterparts in enemy armies.

Re:Competition is often complex. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712927)

Enemy armies?

Re:Competition is often complex. (2)

sgent (874402) | about a year and a half ago | (#43713097)

Umm.... I'm not so sure about that. Especially in civil wars, high ranking officers are often friends with each other.

US Grant and Robert E. Lee is the classic example, but there are numerous others.

Re:Competition is often complex. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712257)

Not always. Fore example, some lawyers, especially those who represent patent and copyright trolls, are sincerely loathed by other attorneys, and for them, it is deeply personal.

Re:Competition is often complex. (1, Insightful)

femtobyte (710429) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712099)

In addition to both being fellow business competitors, Jobs and Gates are also both highly successful sociopaths. Gates knows quite well that emulating compassion and humanity for the media is a savvy move; I'm sure Jobs would have done the same for him, had the situation been reversed.

Re:Competition is often complex. (5, Insightful)

Seumas (6865) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712351)

I understand the cynicism, but I don't see what benefit there is to an uber-billionaire who no longer runs anything except a philanthropic organization where he gives away his own money, to worry about "emulating compassion and humanity for the media".

Ultimately, I don't care, either. Actions speak louder than words. Emulate whatever the fuck you want, as long as you're giving away hundreds of millions of dollars to solve fundamental problems in the world and try to build a structure with which your money will provide the most long-term benefits continued far into the future.

Re:Competition is often complex. (-1, Troll)

rudy_wayne (414635) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712441)

I understand the cynicism, but I don't see what benefit there is to an uber-billionaire who no longer runs anything except a philanthropic organization where he gives away his own money, to worry about "emulating compassion and humanity for the media".

Ultimately, I don't care, either. Actions speak louder than words. Emulate whatever the fuck you want, as long as you're giving away hundreds of millions of dollars to solve fundamental problems in the world and try to build a structure with which your money will provide the most long-term benefits continued far into the future.

Bill Gates has used his fortune to create a foundation that gives many hundreds of million of dollars to help solve various "problems" which sounds really great until you look a little deeper and find that most of his "charity work" has, at best, just been a lot of wasted money that did nothing and in many cases made things worse instead of better.

Re:Competition is often complex. (5, Insightful)

tnk1 (899206) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712631)

I prefer Bill Gates trying and perhaps failing at charity in an attempt to be a decent person to Bill Gates trying and succeeding in being a douchebag.

Actually operating a charity is not as easy as you think it is. It's not just a matter of wrapping up some food and sending it to starving kids in Ethiopia. If that were the case, we'd have solved hunger long ago, as we already make more than enough food for every person on Earth.

Re:Competition is often complex. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712967)

The funny thing is the people running charity suffers harsher criticism than the worst blood-sucking toxin-spilling corporations you don't even know the names of.

*Anybody* running a charity should be commended, even if misguided. If the intention is good, it can't be all worse than the lowest sociopath corporations.

Re:Competition is often complex. (1)

countach74 (2484150) | about a year and a half ago | (#43713065)

Would you like to donate to the Human Fund? It's a charity I started and my intentions are good (TM). Please send check payable to myself at 55 Lonely Drive, Houston TX. Thanks!

Re:Competition is often complex. (4, Interesting)

rudy_wayne (414635) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712971)

I prefer Bill Gates trying and perhaps failing at charity in an attempt to be a decent person to Bill Gates trying and succeeding in being a douchebag.

Actually operating a charity is not as easy as you think it is. It's not just a matter of wrapping up some food and sending it to starving kids in Ethiopia. If that were the case, we'd have solved hunger long ago, as we already make more than enough food for every person on Earth.

The issue isn't Bill Gates "trying and perhaps failing at charity". The problem is that an enormous amount of the work done by his foundation is actually harmful, not beneficial.

Why has the Gates Foundation invested hundreds of millions of dollars in oil companies in Africa (who are among the biggest polluters and whose pollution is causing substantial harm to the local people)? Why has the foundation invested in dozens of the worst polluting companies in the U.S. and Canada? Why has the foundation invested enormous amounts of money in big pharma companies who are actively fighting against making inexpensive medications available to developing nations?

Why? Because that's how Bill Gates and all his billionaire friends make money, now and in the future. Less than 20% of Gates' wealth comes from Microsoft stock.

Re:Competition is often complex. (-1, Troll)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712601)

Considering that he has more money than anyone could spend in ten lifetimes, Gates' philanthropy is like you buying a hamburger for a homeless man. I'm just not impressed. I'm far more impressed with the hungry man who shares half that hamburger with another homeless man.

You realize his father reportedly shamed him into philanthropy, right? And his parents are lawyers!

I'm also not a fan of his reprehensible business practices. [cnet.com]

Re:Competition is often complex. (5, Insightful)

SirGarlon (845873) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712401)

If you look at what Bill Gates has been doing with his time and money [gatesfoundation.org] since he quit Microsoft, it's hard to make the case that he is lacking compassion and humanity. He is doing more and higher-profile philanthropy than any other billionaire I can think of, and doing a lot more good in the world than an average citizen like me is in a position to.

Which is not to say he's a saint. How he got his money is certainly open to criticism: I certainly disapprove of that.

If you feel {compelled, qualified, entitled} to assess the man's character, please consider all the facts. Myself, I don't really know the guy.

Re:Competition is often complex. (0, Flamebait)

femtobyte (710429) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712515)

I've seen Gates spending a lot of "charity" money to coerce poor countries into accepting Big Pharma's terms for "intellectual property" --- to make sure they can't produce cheap medications for themselves, but are ever reliant on (tax-deductible) contributions from wealthy benefactors. I've seen millions poured into "educational reform," to encourage profitable privatization and the creation of corporate-friendly obedient peon mills. Yes, the Gates "philanthropic" foundations have done some good things, but if you look more closely at their records, they're often involved in empire building to assure that the future of the world is still at the mercy of power-hungry multibillionaires.

Re:Competition is often complex. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712543)

Yes. Because Bill Gates cares about how much money the pharmaceutical industry makes. It all makes sense now!

Re:Competition is often complex. (0, Troll)

femtobyte (710429) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712579)

When you have billions of dollars of your own money invested in Big Pharma, you sure do. You know Bill Gates doesn't keep all his money in Microsoft stock? He (and his heirs) are massive beneficiaries of profits for pharmaceutical companies and private education investments. "Big Charity" to coerce national level decision making is just another profitable business/investment decision.

Re:Competition is often complex. (4, Insightful)

KingMotley (944240) | about a year and a half ago | (#43713003)

That might be true, if he actually had heirs. Mr. Gates has already stated that he is not leaving anything to his kids, and he has enough money to last him until he dies, so it kind of makes your argument kind of silly.

Re:Competition is often complex. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43713057)

Bill Gates plans to give away 95% of his fortune: http://archive.is/20120719/http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-11565953.
Let's be honest. Do you really think Bill Gates thinks he can achieve more than a 20x return with the assets he doesn't sell off? I don't think the conspiracy you're looking for exists. If this was the case, why would he intentionally make the operation of the organization transparent? Is Warren Buffett in on the conspiracy too? I honestly think you're grasping at straws.

Re:Competition is often complex. (1, Troll)

rudy_wayne (414635) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712541)

If you look at what Bill Gates has been doing with his time and money [gatesfoundation.org] since he quit Microsoft, it's hard to make the case that he is lacking compassion and humanity.

Really? How about this: http://jennydaviesdevelopment.wordpress.com/2012/10/25/gates-foundation-doing-good-or-causing-harm/ [wordpress.com]

"The Gates Foundation has invested more than $400 million in oil firms in the Niger Delta which are responsible for pollution that many blame for respiratory problems among the local population The Foundation also has investments in sixty-nine of the worst polluting companies in the United States and Canada "

Re:Competition is often complex. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712459)

How do you know that, psychologically speaking, either are sociopaths? Do you have any evidence that they lack emotion, or are you just throwing around words without knowing what they really imply?

Re:Competition is often complex. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712751)

He knows what they imply, it's just more satisfying for him to believe that there must be some sort of simple answer like "they're all monsters", that explains the state of the world and how rich people get rich.

And yeah, some of those guys probably are sociopaths, but many of them are people who just worked hard when they got opportunities that matched their skills. Admittedly, those opportunities do not always fall evenly, but you don't have to lack compassion or emotion to receive them.

The problem is that rich people crop up when inequalities can be turned into revenue generating opportunities, and those opportunities are caused by situations that we often put in place to help more than just rich people.

But that's also why you used to be able to pay an unskilled auto worker $70,000 a year to fetch tools from a tool bin. Trade barriers or knowledge barriers kept the people who were willing to do it for $700 a year from actually getting a chance at the job. So that auto worker had a nice little house and car, and the unemployed foreign worker starved or worked in something so dangerous that a westerner wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole.

Re:Competition is often complex. (1)

avandesande (143899) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712913)

I have always suspected that Bill G. believed he was doing the public a favor by strong arming them into a common platform. Paternalistic or Sociopath?

Re:Competition is often complex. (0)

femtobyte (710429) | about a year and a half ago | (#43713033)

Both? A sociopath won't have much concept of the interests of others as distinct from their own. To a sociopath, doing what's right for *yourself* is identical to doing what's right for the world. Paternalism is fundamentally sociopathic.

Re:Competition is often complex. (5, Insightful)

JohnnyMindcrime (2487092) | about a year and a half ago | (#43713179)

Gates had stated through his entire career at Microsoft that he would give most of his fortune to charity and he does appear to be doing that,

I do not wish to speak ill of the dead but Jobs was not renowned for any charitable works and certainly made little mention of them.

Re:Competition is often complex. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712105)

"kill the baby" but nothing personal right? FYI, it is personal when you put people out of work and that is what Microsoft has done and worked to do over and over so they could save their own business, products and position in the market. There is next to no partnership with Microsoft which ends well for the other company because everything they do and have done has been about making sure Microsoft controls and owns the market. They don't provide software for a competing product until it is so very painfully obvious they can't own that market and even then those products are slow to market and less feature complete compared to their Windows based counter parts.

As for these comments about Steve Jobs not being venomous rivalry backed, well Bill is a good marketing man and knows he'd only harm is position if he badmouthed Jobs. Jobs is gone, he's being held high in the press and public eye since his passing and any good PR person knows you don't hit a dead guy in public when he's liked that much.

Re:Competition is often complex. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712279)

Like when I play chess with my friend, I want to destroy him, then whoever wins, we drink another beer?

Re:Competition is often complex. (2)

femtobyte (710429) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712409)

Like that, only that you'd have been happier to so thoroughly destroy him that he could never play chess again, and take every cent that he had, and leave him homeless to die starving on the street. The only reason you don't is that you're not *that* much better a player than him --- so until then, you act friendly and drink beer together.

Re:Competition is often complex. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712535)

Indeed. It is the same reason that makes my brain cave in when people are saying silly things like "Why would Playstation let Xbox have bluray, that would be helping them" (yes, typed as that, not even the company names... that is the level of brains those types typically have)

Business is business. Companies regularly have sub-sections of their company competing and helping each other indirectly and even directly in some cases.
You might not even agree with a business partners ethics, but they are still paying you for stuff, screw the ethics of it.

Many people come across these situations, such as IBM dealing with Nazi Germany, or the creators of encrypted networks having to come to the realization that they are also helping terrorists, pedos, human traffickers and other shady types communicate too, that is the price of true freedom. To have censorship introduces an unwelcome avenue for abuse. To balance those being suppressed by oppressive oversight to those being abused physically, some even meet each other at times. (although there was a system in some program that let the community rate things positively, so only things the community wants at the top results is shown. Open to abuse, still)
There is rarely ever black and white situations in these scenarios, they are mainly many shades of grey.

Thinking about your mortality... (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43711897)

Thinking about your mortality is possibly the MOST constructive thing you can do, at least as far as not being an a-hole is concerned.

Re:Thinking about your mortality... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43711957)

If that's true then after reading Jobs biography I'd have to guess he spent no time thinking about his mortality.

Re:Thinking about your mortality... (2)

MachineShedFred (621896) | about a year and a half ago | (#43713007)

A man that spends time thinking about mortality doesn't do shloads of LSD, go on some whack-a-nut "frutarian" diet, and put off tumor removal surgery for months.

Many things can be said about Jobs, but rational concern for his own health was not one of them.

Re:Thinking about your mortality... (1)

Northern Pike (308389) | about a year and a half ago | (#43711973)

Perhaps he should have said "'Obsessing' about your potential morality isn't very constructive". It is important to understand that our time is limited and it makes good sense to do the best you can while you can. Taken that way I think his comment rings true.

Re:Thinking about your mortality... (5, Insightful)

Seumas (6865) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712365)

Thinking about your mortality is valuable when you have all the time in the world ahead of you. Thinking about it when it is an immediate certainty is a detriment.

Oh come on Bill (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43711933)

'Thinking about your potential mortality isn't very constructive,
That is bullshit, and he knows it. Wasting your last months on earth worrying about a design for a mega yacht somehow is constructive? I guess rich people really aren't like me. They don't seem to actually have a soul.

Re:Oh come on Bill (3, Insightful)

0racle (667029) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712027)

Are you suggesting wallowing in misery was a better way to spend their time together?

Re:Oh come on Bill (0)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712245)

Haven't you read Maslow? According to a navel gazer, navel gazing (aka 'wallowing in misery') is the highest form of human activity.

Re:Oh come on Bill (2)

Seumas (6865) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712323)

I don't think that's what he meant. It isn't personally constructive. A yacht may seem stupid to you, but it was important to a dying man and gave him something to occupy his time and energy, which is valuable in a time like that. Sure, maybe he could have spent his remaining months in his frail body overseas handing out cash or something, but whatever.

Re:Oh come on Bill (5, Insightful)

GLMDesigns (2044134) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712369)

What is so wrong about a yacht? If he was looking at the design for a garden would you still spew such venom? He was designing something he found beautiful. Maybe he was keeping hope alive that he might sail it around the world; imagining the sunrises and the ocean sky. Is that so much different than you and I?

Oh. I got it. He's got money. Therefore he's evil.

Re:Oh come on Bill (1, Troll)

TWiTfan (2887093) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712389)

I suspect Gates is being magnanimous here. It seems quite likely that Gates was trying to talk with Jobs about the Gates Foundation and to seek his support in his waning days. The fact that Jobs (who had a notoriously anti-charity reputation) only wanted to talk about his damned yacht is telling. If that is true, then Gates is being quite generous to only mention the detail about his yacht, and not the part about Jobs rebuffing his charitable request.

Re:Oh come on Bill (5, Interesting)

unimacs (597299) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712527)

My step-dad worked in construction his whole life and he loved it. He loved building things. Well after "retiring" he'd putter around in the workshop he had in the garage. Not long before he died he had me helping him build these modular tables and benches he could reposition for doing various things. His health had deteriorated quite a bit by this point and I strongly suspected he would die before getting much if any use from these tables.

To me it seemed kind of pointless and physically it wasn't easy for him. As I suspected, it was only a few months later that he ended up in the hospital because of his ongoing heart problems, suffered a stroke and died.

These tables were monstrous and incomplete. Nobody wanted them, so eventually they were dismantled.

The missing part of the story is that this man survived over 40 years after open heart surgery and was relatively active in spite of several heat attacks and periodic bouts with other debilitating health problems. Part of the reason he managed to do this was that in spite of his often poor health he never stopped living the life he wanted to live. He may very well have known he'd never finish the tables, but he loved the process. It got him up in the morning.

I think lots of people when faced with mortality will spend more time with their families and trying to do the things they wished they had been doing all their lives. Some people were already doing it. That may be the case with Jobs. I'm not saying he wasn't a jerk and that he didn't have regrets. I'm sure he did. But that doesn't change what brought him joy.

Re:Oh come on Bill (1)

BradleyAndersen (1195415) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712845)

I am very sorry to have spent all my mod points earlier, troll-bashing. This is a great post.

wasting time (5, Interesting)

bzipitidoo (647217) | about a year and a half ago | (#43713053)

Many years ago, I once spent a Saturday trying to make the Catalan solids out of wood, using cheap tilt vises, a homemade rotary table, and a poor man's milling machine (an end mill in a cheap drill press that couldn't hold it steady). Didn't get very far-- the tools simply didn't have the precision needed to do a good job. Even though we economized too much on the tools, they were still ridiculously expensive. Why did I try that way? I was following my father's vision of how such a thing should be done, and machinery was what he grew up with. Another Saturday, I used a different approach of making a paper model and filling the interior with epoxy. This worked much better but still had problems. For one, epoxy has a shelf life. It will not harden properly if it is too old, and this was. Another is that epoxy generates heat when it is curing, and this was a large enough mass to become almost too hot to touch. I don't know if an even larger mass could get hot enough to cause real problems such as fires and melting, but it was something to keep in mind. Then my father wanted to employ number punches to number the sides, as if hardened epoxy was just as malleable as metal. To satisfy him, I tried it, and of course the epoxy shattered. Today, those shapes would be a trivial job for a 3D printer.

The point? If I had spent those Saturdays playing computer games, no one would have thought anything of it. But when I mentioned this use of a Saturday, I got a lot of strange looks, and a few queries about why I had "wasted" my time so. My brother warned his fiancee, who dislikes nerds, that I was likely to show off those polyhedrons. It was almost as if I had contracted a contagious disease, the way people acted about the whole thing. Nice when your own brother inoculates his circle against your weirdness, so that they all know to keep their distance and not give you any opportunities to bore the hell out of them and show off how nerdy you really are.

You don't know what specifically Jobs and Gates were discussing about yachts. If it was ways of fitting the ship for cleanup of oil spills, plastics, or other pollution, or for some sort of science like ocean or hydrothermal vent research, or as a test bed for Internet communication over vast expanses of empty ocean (think how that could benefit the Pirate Bay), I would not call that a waste of time. And even if it was none of that, it likely was something of some use. I hardly think Jobs and Gates would have discussed the sort of crass, trashy thing a moronic joker like Donald Trump would do, such as solid gold plumbing fixtures which serves no good purpose, as it is only to inspire jealousy by rubbing in how incredibly filthy rich the owner is, and that only works on fellow fools.

So...no more evil BORG icon (0, Redundant)

MindPrison (864299) | about a year and a half ago | (#43711965)

...on Slashdot then?

Re:So...no more evil BORG icon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712065)

DICE wanted those Microsoft job postings

Re:So...no more evil BORG icon (3, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712287)

I always thought the Billy borg icon looked rather upbeat.

Re:So...no more evil BORG icon (1)

Immerman (2627577) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712815)

And why not? He was on a multi-decade winning streak, I'd be upbeat too.

NO . (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712327)

Now, a weeping clown.

Re:So...no more evil BORG icon (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712675)

Would you let yourself be implanted with a Microsoft device?? I wouldn't, and I am a device-implanted cyborg! So I think that gates-of-borg icon is hilarious for that reason.

"Set your phasers on bluescreen!"

first Po5t (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712005)

The poinT more

With all due credit to their rivals (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712019)

He simply has no reason to rip a rival limb from limb in the same way he did as Microsoft CEO.

Microsoft had a few shady dealings, and the case with Netscape was outright illegal. But even that didn't put Netscape under, it was their idiotic decision to rewrite their browser from scratch in Java that doomed them.

The real history is that Microsoft's rivals ripped themselves limb from limb. All Microsoft did was not screw up quite so much that it put them out of business.

Not very surprising. (4, Funny)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712021)

Whatever said and done in public, these college drop outs, they are a thick bunch. They stand up for one another.

Re:Not very surprising. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712659)

Whatever said and done in public, these college drop outs, they are a thick bunch. They stand up for one another.

Yes they do, when its good for public image.

Had gates stood up for jobs, shown him public respect and been friends in public then that's another story. But to show compassion and explain friendship when the other person has died? Eh, that's just playing a game of putting on a good face. Kind of like how everyone did nothing but say Michael Jackson was a pathetic joke and make fun of him, but as soon as he dies people line up to talk about what a great amazing legend he was and the bright shining example of humanity.

Its all bullshit.

Re:Not very surprising. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712811)

Yes we do. Frat boy.

Re:Not very surprising. (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712907)

Well, one thing for sure - there are few people who are as crass as RMS when discussing someone like Jobs, even if they were rivals during the time the deceased was alive. Gates did the dignified thing he could do, and separated his corporate rivalry with Apple from anything personal to say about Jobs. As for the yachts, it's called a hobby - different people have different ones, be it flying, sking, sailing, whitewater rafting, coding, travelling and so on

iSink on the iYacht (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712047)

Bill gates bringing up late Mr Jobs ridiculous yacht is the worst possible insult imaginable.

1st rule in business (4, Insightful)

IWantMoreSpamPlease (571972) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712083)

You never talk bad (in public) about a rival who is dead. It's poor form.

Had Jobs still been alive, things would be different.

Re:1st rule in business (5, Insightful)

Seumas (6865) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712201)

It's not just a matter of bad form. It's just a matter of something most people would never want to do, Gates included. It's exciting and driving to compete with a rival and to egg that rivalry on. When a respected rival passes -- especially one who was part of this back and forth spurring on for decades through something as amazing as the revolution of computing -- it's a huge personal loss. It's something and someone you miss.

Re:1st rule in business (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712285)

Despite the business rivalry Gates and Jobs seemed to get along well in public, at least when the cameras were rolling. I've seen interviews with them on stage together and they seemed respectful of each other.

Most people don't want to speak ill of the deceased, even if they were rivals. Of course Richard Stallman is an exception. He was badmouthing Jobs before the man's corpse was cold. RMS has zero class, he could learn a thing or two from Gates.

Re:1st rule in business (4, Insightful)

tnk1 (899206) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712825)

RMS is stone-cold focused. Not saying that makes him very comfortable to be around, but you always know he's being sincere.

Re:1st rule in business (2)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year and a half ago | (#43713183)

He did have a more dignified alternative if he wanted to be sincere - not commenting on Jobs in the first place. Few would have held that against him.

Re:1st rule in business (5, Insightful)

Dr. Spork (142693) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712243)

It's not just that. Talking about how everything good at Apple came from the brilliant mind of a now-dead guy actually is a dig at (present-day) Apple. It serves to undermine confidence in Apple's prospects, and feeds the meme of Apple's inevitable post-Jobs decline, without explicitly stating that.

Re:1st rule in business (0)

tippe (1136385) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712363)

This is very insightful. Why do my mod points always run out just before I need them...?

Re:1st rule in business (1)

SirGarlon (845873) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712277)

And here I thought the first rule in business was "do things that will make money." ;-)

Re:1st rule in business (1)

steelfood (895457) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712321)

That's because talking smack is only a part of the game. It's not personal. To keep talking smack once the competition is takes things from professional to personal, which is indeed bad form.

These types of people only stop competing with each other at death, so the smack talk will continue until somebody dies.

Note this doesn't mean Bill Gates is no longer competing with Apple. It's just that he's aiming in Tim Cook's direction now.

Gates's current position in life... (5, Funny)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712149)

Gates's magnanimity toward his former rival and Apple is a reflection, perhaps, of his current position in life:

Yeah, Gates being alive and Jobs being dead, mainly.

What about Stallman? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712195)

Let's trash the dead man. Sometime Stallman does not know when to shut up.

First Rule: You do not talk bad about a dead man, because the dead man can not reply you and everybody will look bad at you instead.

Both are assholes (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712197)

Yes, it's a shame a vindictive billionaire, who disavowed his daughter for nearly 20 years, didn't get to see his yacht finished before he died.

Bill Gates is a fascinating turn-around story. (5, Insightful)

Seumas (6865) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712307)

I've long been fascinated by the evolution of Bill Gates. I cut my teeth in this field as an engineer at Netscape, where I watched along with the rest of the industry as Microsoft did what they did to Netscape and all of the following legal proceedings and DoJ activities ensued. While I still respected the story and beginning of Gates (reading everything I could about him, when I was a teenager), I hated Mr. Borg with a passion and everything about Microsoft. It was what drove me to the arms of Linux and, ultimately, Unix (and my career therein).

Then, he decided to move on from just leading a tech and business army and raking in cash to making finding a way to properly use that cash for the betterment of man. We saw a completely different side of him. Perhaps a new side of the guy that game with maturity and wisdom. I gained a completely new respect for him. I still disagree with some of his views, completely disagree with some of his former business practices, am frustrated and dismayed with a lot of Microsoft's current endeavors and decisions . . . but as a man -- I've come to have a lot of admiration for what he's doing. He's a great example for the rest of the world's wealthiest in doing something truly constructive and beneficial with their unimaginable wealth.

Americans love a success story and we love a story of personal redemption. The only thing we love more than hating someone is them turning things around and giving us reasons to be in their corner. This is one of those stories. And, personally, I find his activities a solid reminder in my own personal life to remember how fortunate I am in my career. As a direct result, I make a point of doing what I can to support things like Engineers Without Borders. I bet many other engineers out there have found the same respect and inspiration.

I also find it sad that, for as inspiring as I found Jobs as far as business and design, there is simply no similar compelling feeling in that same way, after his passing.

Re:Bill Gates is a fascinating turn-around story. (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712503)

Uhm, he actually makes money on his "charities", which in really just funnel funds to MS through the backdoor. All the excusive MS-only licenses he sells to entire third world nations in exchange for healthcare donations are probably not doing them a net favor.

Re:Bill Gates is a fascinating turn-around story. (-1, Troll)

rodrigoandrade (713371) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712697)

All the while shielding his personal fortune from the IRS through a non-profit organization and endless tax exemptions.

A leopard doesn't change its spots.

Re:Bill Gates is a fascinating turn-around story. (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712507)

Some people are just there for the money. Others are all about the game. I think this is especially prevalent in Lawyers and Engineers. You want to win - whatever game it is you're playing. When Gates played computer monopoly, he played to win. Now he's playing save the world.

I'm not sure whether Jobs was just about the money (though I suspect it), whether he felt his defeat early on meant he could never play another game, or if his early death simply meant he never had the option to switch games.

Re:Bill Gates is a fascinating turn-around story. (2)

tnk1 (899206) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712905)

No, Jobs wasn't about the money either. He was about making the world look the way he wanted it to. It's just that the money was both the means of doing it, and the measure of his success.

While I doubt he was upset with the money, nothing I know about him leads me to believe that it did more than enable him to be as ambitious as he wanted to be. I think he would have been almost as happy as a bum on the street if he's seen that everyone was walking around with one of his products in their pocket and his idea of design was being copied everywhere.

To me, that's all about the game. But then, after a certain level of income, it ceases to be real anyway. You're just keeping score.

Re:Bill Gates is a fascinating turn-around story. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43712517)

I also find it sad that, for as inspiring as I found Jobs as far as business and design, there is simply no similar compelling feeling in that same way, after his passing.

Gates' very own Jacob Marley.

Re:Bill Gates is a fascinating turn-around story. (2)

BlackHawk-666 (560896) | about a year and a half ago | (#43713047)

Like you, I've been watching the evolution of Gates from the early days. I started out disliking him and his predatory business practices. In the early days it seemed to me like he stole almost all of the good things that made Microsoft strong (DOS-CPM, Windows-MacOS, MSN-Internet, Zune-iPod, etc). The company used highly unethical means to absorb, overpower, or destroy competitors. It's products seemed nothing more that badly cloned copies of more innovative ideas.

Over time though I have watched him develop from a robber-baron into a humanitarian who's charity work is invaluable to innumerable people. His character has mellowed, and although Microsoft itself still has many of it's old evil traits I no longer see him as inseparable from that.

He has become...strangely likeable to me, and I never thought I would say that.

If what I remember hearing is correct, when he dies he will leave a nominal amount to his family / friends, and the vast bulk of his earnings will go to charities. I have no reason at all now to call him anything but a good man.

Picture of Bill tearing up (4, Funny)

Tator Tot (1324235) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712311)

I found a picture of Bill as he's discussing [pandawhale.com] his friendship with Steve Jobs.

Re:Picture of Bill tearing up (1)

captbob2002 (411323) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712797)

was afraid that was going to be goatse

What did you expect them to discuss? (4, Funny)

TWiTfan (2887093) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712313)

Jobs' charity efforts?

He's over it (1)

poisonborz (2676611) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712513)

The more Bill Gates interviews I read, the more assured I am that he really is tired of the tech industry. He won't be a Wozniak-type of guy who will critically observe MS or other companies, judge platforms or review products. He endorses coding, talks about future technologies in broad terms, but he must be really pressed by reporters to share anything relevant to current affairs. He couldn't care less.

Magnanimity... (2)

nine-times (778537) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712565)

Gates's magnanimity toward his former rival and Apple is a reflection, perhaps, of his current position in life: it's been nearly five years since his last full-time day at Microsoft, and all of his efforts seem focused on his philanthropic endeavors. He simply has no reason to rip a rival limb from limb in the same way he did as Microsoft CEO.

Well... there's not much of a reason to rip a rival limb from limb when he's already dead. It'd be in pretty poor taste, actually, and I'd expect Gates to avoid badmouthing Jobs if only to avoid looking like an asshole.

Also, their relationship was reportedly far less adversarial than people tended to assume. Most of the people who were supposedly in-the-know claimed that they were friends to some extent, and got along pretty well in spite of disagreeing on a lot of things.

3 Bill (1)

BumpyCarrot (775949) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712585)

I never use an MS product aside from the XBox by choice, and I use OSX daily, but I think Bill Gates is a legitimately OK dude. I think if he made a return to MS, he could really turn things around for them, particularly with the lessons that Apple has taught the industry.

Also, it occurs me that such an obviously massive geek could be the antidote to the ultra-consumer tech. industry.

link to interview (1)

Mr. White (22990) | about a year and a half ago | (#43712831)

http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50146679n

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?