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History Will Revere Bill Gates and Forget Steve Jobs, Says Author 679

Hugh Pickens writes "PC Magazine reports that journalist Malcolm Gladwell, author of The Tipping Point and Outliers, has stirred up quite a controversy in tech circles with his off-the-cuff remarks that history will remember Bill Gates fondly while Steve Jobs slips into obscurity. Gladwell likened Gates' charitable work to the German armaments maker Oskar Schindler's famous efforts to save his Jewish workers from the gas chambers during World War II, and added that because of Gates there's a reasonable shot we will cure malaria. 'Gates, sure, is the most ruthless capitalist. And then he decides, he wakes up one morning and he says, "Enough." And he steps down, he takes his money, takes it off the table ... and I think, I firmly believe that 50 years from now, he will be remembered for his charitable work,' said Gladwell. 'And of the great entrepreneurs of this era, people will have forgotten Steve Jobs. Who's Steve Jobs again?' For all his dismissal of Jobs' legacy, however, Gladwell remains utterly fascinated with him. 'He was an extraordinarily brilliant businessman and entrepreneur. He was also a self-promoter on a level that we have rarely seen,' said Gladwell. 'What was brilliant about Apple, he understood from the get-go that the key to success in that marketplace was creating a distinctive and powerful and seductive brand.' Gladwell concludes that the most extraordinary moment in the biography of Jobs is when Jobs is on his deathbed and it's over and he knows it. 'And on, I forget, three, four occasions, he refuses the mask because he is unhappy with its design. That's who he was. Right to the very end, he had a set of standards. If he was going to die, dammit, he's going to die with the right kind of oxygen mask. To him it was like making him send his final emails using Windows.'"
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History Will Revere Bill Gates and Forget Steve Jobs, Says Author

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:29AM (#40273569)

    In 50 years history will understand bill gates destroyed more than he created.

  • by DemomanDeveloper ( 2658739 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:36AM (#40273599)
    But say what you want about Microsoft or Bill Gates, but he sure has helped the world with the fortune he created during his lifetime. He sure is a great person for that reason, and kudos to Bill for that.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:39AM (#40273615)

    In the same way that everyone remember Columbus, but no one remembers his financial supporters, I don't think Gates will be remembered for curing malaria or whatever else he gives money too.
    Leading a successful company just isn't interesting enough for you to be remembered for hundreds of years.

  • by realityimpaired ( 1668397 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:43AM (#40273645)

    The article is right, though... 50 years from now, Steve Jobs' chief contribution will have been the creation of a design company that hasn't actually come up with a new idea since a couple of years before Jobs' death. I would be surprised if Apple is still in existence in 50 years. Jobs will end up as a footnote in history. I would be equally surprised if Microsoft is still in existence in 50 years, but they do have a better chance because they're ruled by committee. How many people remember what Douglas Engelbart did for computing? This place is populated by geeks, and I'd lay odds that several people reading this don't know what he did, even though modern computers couldn't work the way they do without his contributions. 50 years from now, Jobs will be in the same category.

    Here's the thing... the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is set up as a self-perpetuating trust. They are spending gobs of cash, but they're only spending the interest and are actually profitable despite the amount of money they're spending on charity work. Barring some kind of global economic meltdown orders of magnitude worse than the one in 2008, 50 years from now the Gates Foundation will still be around, and will still be doing charitable work. For that reason alone, Bill Gates will be better remembered by history.

  • by DemomanDeveloper ( 2658739 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:44AM (#40273653)

    Yes, let's all be sure to thank him for operating Microsoft anticompetitively and taking a giant shit on all of us for so many years.

    Yeah, what were they thinking when they dared to include web browser in their OS so that people could actually get online (and maybe get their favorite browsers' install files). How dare they!

  • by whisper_jeff ( 680366 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:47AM (#40273677)

    He's right - Gates probably will be remembered fondly in time. Gates is using his vast fortune to do a lot of good things now and it will make an already-memorable man more so.

    He is, however, entirely wrong that Jobs will be forgotten. Jobs is, simply put, the most successful CEO in history. I don't think that can even vaguely be debated (at least not intelligently). Some could even argue that his success as a CEO makes him also the most successful _leader_ of all time. Of course, some will argue against that theory. Regardless of your thoughts on it, however, you will be discussing him and thus he will not be forgotten, at least not for many, many generations.

    And, no, I didn't read the article - I refuse to read any article that so obviously utilizes inane controversy to generate page views and bump of ad revenue.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:47AM (#40273681)

    "They abused their position as an OS vendor by tweaking products to be less interoperable with their competitors' software. They abused their thus-gained monopoly position through all manner of anticompetitive practice. This resulted not only in a dearth of customer choice (necessary for a healthy marketplace) but also in actual negative financial impact to human beings."

    Wait, are you talking about Microsoft or Apple here?

  • by medcalf ( 68293 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:49AM (#40273691) Homepage
    Gates like Rockefeller, and Jobs like Ford. And I suspect each would be content with that.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:52AM (#40273711)

    Thing is : you have no clue what philanthropic work has been done by Jobs. Unlike Gates who like to put his freaking fucking face in each and every camera, Jobs did it privately as it should be done. Do good, and don't talk about it. Gates is an attention whore. Always was, always will be.

  • by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <> on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:53AM (#40273719) Homepage Journal

    Wait, are you talking about Microsoft or Apple here?

    I'm talking about Microsoft, but give Apple time and success and you'll likely be able to reuse the quotation and apply it to them. Apple does not and never has had a monopoly, not even on apps for iDevices, although I do think their attempts at lockdown are anticompetitive.

  • by msauve ( 701917 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:54AM (#40273729)
    "what were they thinking when they dared to include an 'embrace and extend,' proprietary network platform in their OS so that people might actually be locked into their ecosystem (despite the pre-existence of browsers based on open standards). "

    Fixed that.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 10, 2012 @08:55AM (#40273735)

    Add to that, that Jobs did give money to charity, except Jobs didn't advertise it, while gates apparently did it because it was 'expected' for the billionaires club. Bono said he has given tens of millions to charities under the table but refused to have his name attributed to it.

    Which is more charitable in such cases?

  • by Real_Reddox ( 1010195 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:01AM (#40273769) Journal

    But in the end, Gates is using some of his money to give a false impression of philanthronpy

    Oh yeah, how dare he use his money to cure malaria, the false bastard

  • by fafaforza ( 248976 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:01AM (#40273775)

    Right. "Force" people to use computers that were a vast improvement over what they had before, or help all kinds of underprivileged people via an array of humanitarian efforts. Yup, definitely a scumbag. He gave us Windows, after all, and might have prevented other multinationals from making more money than they did.

    What a shortsighted nerd view.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:06AM (#40273801)

    More and more I'm seeing users here toss around allegations of "astroturfing" or "shilling" any time anybody says something that isn't completely negative about Microsoft, or Apple, or Google, or Oracle, or Facebook, or Bill Gates, or Steve Jobs, or basically any other prominent company or individual.

    Worst of all, this is done without providing any sort of evidence that astroturfing actually is taking place. The age of an account and the number of comments posted using it in the past are not evidence, by the way.

    Martin Espinoza, please present some real evidence to show that this is indeed a case of astroturfing. At the very least, you'll need to prove that the "DemomanDeveloper" was in contact with a representative or representatives of Microsoft and/or Bill Gates, that an agreement was put in place for "DemomanDeveloper" to fake support for Gates, that consideration (financial or otherwise) was involved, and that Slashdot comment 40273599 was intentionally posted to fulfill the obligations of this agreement. I await your evidence.

    Save the accusations of "astroturfing" and "shilling" for when such incidents can provably be shown to have happened. Otherwise, learn to accept that some people may have opinions that differ from yours, and that just because they support Microsoft, or Google, or Facebook, or Apple, or whoever, it does not mean that they are "astroturfing".

    It really degrades the conversation here, Martin Espinoza, when people like you are tossing around "astroturfing" accusations and allegations day-in and day-out, with no evidence or proof of any kind. I'd expect that over at Digg or reddit, but not here.

  • by Ralish ( 775196 ) <> on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:09AM (#40273827) Homepage

    How sad and cynical do you have to be to seriously believe that all the time and money Gates has spent, especially post-Microsoft, is some sort of elaborate ploy to make people think better of him? I'm sure he's under no illusion that he can convince certain elements of the Slashdot community, but really, that's far more a reflection on those people than it is him.

    Your comment has truly depressed me. Doubly so that it got modded anything other than flamebait.

  • by sed quid in infernos ( 1167989 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:18AM (#40273901)

    Gates's talking about it got Buffet to donate more than a billion dollars. There's little doubt that he has gotten others to contribute significant money, too. Jobs was well equipped to do the same, had he chosen to do so. I'm not going to knock Jobs for however he conducted his philanthropy. There are trade-offs involved in everything, and Jobs made his for reasons that presumably made sense to him. Good for him. And good for Gates for deciding to apply not just his money but his prestige to the causes he cares about.

    And let's ignore that there are at least some beneficent motives for being public about charitable giving, and assume for a minute Gates is just in it for the attention. So the hell what? It means that society has found a way to channel base motivations to do impressive good. That's a good thing. I prefer a world where attention whores give billions to disease prevention and education to a world in which they do something useless or actively harmful to get attention.

  • by FitForTheSun ( 2651243 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:19AM (#40273905)

    Steve Jobs famously publicly eschewed charity. Whether that was a front for secret charity, I don't know, but unless you do know, the parsimonious conclusions is that he wasn't a charitable person.

  • by Haedrian ( 1676506 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:21AM (#40273919)

    Its not like he (and apple) weren't rolling in cash before Jobs died...

  • You are insane.

    Ad Hominem.

    Is anyone dying because of drug patents?

    Seriously? You're really going to ask that question? You don't actually want the answer, do you? AIDS drugs are expensive largely because of patents, and 30 children die every hour because of AIDS-related complications. That's one illness.

    Strong IP protection for big pharma is currently extremely necessary.

    [citation needed]

    Drug development isn't cheap.

    The vast majority of Big Pharma's expenditure is on advertising. Much of the funding to create their drugs actually comes from the taxpayer, because the fundamental research is carried out at public universities.

    Now if we were in an ideal world where all drug development was funded generously by tax and not private enterprise i'd agree that patents would be counter productive

    Great. Let's do that. There's no reason we can't do that; the fundamental research is already done at universities. Now the trials will have to be done by the universities instead of private firms that find it much easier to hide inconvenient results.

    I wish they'd start by making all drug advertising illegal then maybe they'd have a bit more money to work with.

    Well, now you have found something on which we can agree 100%.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:22AM (#40273939)

    IE and standards in the same sentence. WOW! Call the NYT, Batman, Superman and David Letterman : we have a new comedy hero in the house.

    Hilarious. Any more clueless jokes? Come on. Entertain us, MS shill

  • by JoshuaZ ( 1134087 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:27AM (#40273981) Homepage
    I suspect Gates does do what he does in part because he wants to be liked. Humans have a lot of trouble not having that as a motivation. However, I agree strongly with your analysis. The real evidence that Gates is trying to really be helpful and that's his primary goal is what he has targeted. He isn't doing flashy stuff in the developed world, but rather looked and said "how can I save the most lives the most efficiently?" and then went and did this. This is what charity should be, not feel good measures but giving money where it is really needed.
  • by AngryDeuce ( 2205124 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:53AM (#40274179)

    The guy (Steve Jobs) parked in handicapped spots [], and even went so far as to only keep his cars long enough to skirt under the registration requirement so he couldn't be ticketed for it.

    I know there are a lot of Apple haters out there, but everything I've ever read about Steve Jobs as a person is totally negative and points to him being an asshole of epic proportions. This makes it hard for me to believe he was a philanthropist in secret.

    This quote in particular cracks me up []:

    “He’s gotten a lot of criticism for not giving away tons of money, but I think it’s a bum rap. There’s only so many hours in a week, and he created so many incredible products. He really contributed to culture and society.”

    Only in today's twisted world can creating Chinese-made, throw-away consumer goods sold for premium prices be considered "giving back to the world". It fits well with this whole mythology we're building up around the wealthy these days, how it's just such a burden being rich and all that...

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 10, 2012 @09:57AM (#40274197)

    "Only in America do people tell you about all the good work they are doing for charity anonymously" - Jay Leno

  • by KH2002 ( 547812 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @10:04AM (#40274241) Journal

    I agree about Gladwell. The way he talked about Jobs not having original ideas showed that he really has no clue about how the technology industry works. The smugness that went along with this was fairly insufferable.

    I didn't have a particularly positive impression of Gladwell to begin with – but it's even lower now.

  • by SydShamino ( 547793 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @10:08AM (#40274273)

    Really? So you invest in what's making money, for example, like a dirty coal power plant on the outskirts of a poor village, then use 1/10th the profit from that plant to combat asthma in that village?

    How exactly is that charity?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 10, 2012 @10:21AM (#40274365)
    Bill Gates has been VERY ABUSIVE. Hugh Pickens, that story damages your reputation! What does Malcom Gladwell know about technology? Mr. Gladwell often over-estimates how much he knows.

    Now Mr. Gates is taking money he got from having an un-regulated monopoly and using it to take credit for the accomplishments of other people. There appears to be little or no evidence Mr. Gates understands much about what he is doing. He has admitted mistakes in education, for example.

    Both Steve Jobs and Bill Gates were abusive. Bill Gates has been more destructive to the world, not less. It seems reasonable to guess that Mr. Gladwell or Mr. Pickens, or both, took money to make Bill Gates seem better than he really is.
  • by fafaforza ( 248976 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @10:25AM (#40274389)

    Are you honestly comparing hunger and disease that he's now giving money to cure to you having to use one type of computer? Are you for real? Maybe you should take this to r/firstworldproblems. "Dear FWP, I was forced to use one type of operating system to make my life just a tad easier." Tell that to someone whose main task is to find some drinking water for today.

  • by oji-sama ( 1151023 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @10:27AM (#40274401)

    I refuse to believe that you are not DemomanDeveloper until you log in and demonstrate a posting history.

    And yet the comment is valid even if the writer was DemomanDeveloper.

  • by BitZtream ( 692029 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @10:54AM (#40274597)

    He didn't give us Windows, he forced windows on us by having an exclusive contract with the PC vendors.

    I hate MS and Bill Gates almost as much as Linux zealots ... but this is just a retarded statement.

    No one was FORCED to buy Windows, everyone DID buy Windows because it fit there needs better than alternatives.

    If people didn't want Windows, he wouldn't have been able to get exclusive distribution rights with PC makers.

    I suspect that if he's going to admit it (which no one should hold their breath waiting) he'll do it on his death bed so he can't be chewed out for the damage he's wreaked on the computing sector.

    Seriously? You've got a warped view of the world if your reason for doing things is because of what others think of you.

    If Bill Gates is concerned with with how he's acted in this world, he's concerned RIGHT NOW. He's already aware of his evils, FAR more than we are.

    People don't make death bed confessions because they were afraid of what was going to happen to them in life. People make death bed confessions because they are afraid of what comes in the after life and they're hoping for forgiveness before its too late to be forgiven.

    And yes, DOS was better than CP/M, you know why? Because the shit I wanted to use ran on it. If you think the 'technically superior' product is the one that wins the market, you've never had your eyes open. Technically superior products ALWAYS fail as people don't want technically superior, they want fucking useful, which is almost always different. Go see how HURD and Plan 9 are doing.

    You speak like a 15 year old who hates gates because its nerd trendy.

  • by thetoadwarrior ( 1268702 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @11:10AM (#40274709) Homepage
    Except that all that money still primarily ends up in the hands of corporations through investment and they more or less only give enough away to avoid taxes. How is that really any different than running a investment firm? But then on top of it he's effectively creating a charity monopoly that has a knock-on effect of hurting a lot of other charities that do good things. And a lot of those companies they invest in are harming poor countries.

    Here's a good more balanced look at his foundation.,0,2533850.story []

    Arguably Gates is causing more problems than he's fixing. I don't think we need even more billionaires doing that.

    In my opinion a lot of his billionaire charitable actions are a con. They claim they are giving their money away rather than giving it to their children but the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is a family foundation. Where do you think Gates' kids will end up or if they start their own foundation do you not think they'll get family money for that?

    Let's see where Buffet puts his money:

    the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
    the Sherwood Foundation (formerly called the Susan A. Buffett Foundation)
    the Howard G. Buffett Foundation
    the NoVo Foundation (Co-Chair Peter Buffet and President and Co-Chair Jennifer Buffet)
    Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation

    So all his money goes to his friend or his family. If they're so concerned about helping us plebes why can't they just give that money to existing charities and foundations rather than to friends and family? It's a scam, imo.
  • by Kijori ( 897770 ) <ward,jake&gmail,com> on Sunday June 10, 2012 @11:12AM (#40274717)

    The world's richest man decided that he wanted to make more money. In order to do so he decided not to invest in stocks or venture capital. Instead he gave away a large proportion of his money to a foundation that is required by law to give away over $1.5bn each year to public charities. The foundation can then use this as a cover to invest in lucrative enterprises like eradicating polio and curing guinea worm disease.

    You are alleging that a seemingly philanthropic endeavour is actually some sort of cynical scheme to make money from the problems of the developing world. That's a pretty serious allegation. If you don't have any evidence an honourable person would take it back.

  • While I agree that the way it is done today is not ideal, there is no guarantee that another specific way will be better, and making the change to another way is going to be complicated.

    If you use the same techniques but eliminate the corporate (not personal — people still get jobs which can be quite well-paying as they are performing a highly-needed service) profit motive thereby eliminating the majority of their expenditures by also eliminating advertising that alone will decrease the cost of medication by more than 50%.

  • by AngryDeuce ( 2205124 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @11:34AM (#40274877)

    Come on, it may be a dick move, but I bet he never came close to preventing a handicapped person from parking.

    How the hell would you know? How could he know? Unless he was visually monitoring the spot, there could have been plenty of handicapped people that were forced to drive by and park farther away all because he was Steve fucking Jobs and the rules don't apply to him.

    Would you make the same excuses if Joe Blow did it in front of your local 7-11? Why does Steve Jobs get a pass?

  • by QuantumLeaper ( 607189 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @11:44AM (#40274933) Journal

    Tech company that had no ethics and would follow a pattern of Steal , Sue and Buyout.

    Sounds just like Apple but they don't Buy you out, they try to put completion out of Business.

  • by bzipitidoo ( 647217 ) <> on Sunday June 10, 2012 @11:47AM (#40274949) Journal

    Gladwell is way off base. We remember the business giants of bygone eras for being business giants, not their charitable work. Rockefeller is known for oil more than anything else. Likewise with J. P. Morgan and banking, Carnegie and steel, Vanderbilt and railroads, etc. None of these guys have a savory reputation. They were all known for being ruthless businessmen ready to engage in any profitable behavior no matter how unethical, if they had good odds of getting away with it or getting off lightly if caught.

    Today, there isn't a one among our best business leaders who doesn't have more and worse baggage than the average politician. Nor has there ever been. The very "best" business leaders ever (as crudely measured by wealth) look pathetic next to the best statesmen, scientists, journalists, explorers, military leaders, sports stars, artists, and performers. Top business leaders are almost more infamous than famous. Always seem to leave behind them a long trail of victims of dirty competition, callousness, theft, treachery, betrayal, bribery, graft, and corruption. Many even think that sort of thing might be necessary to succeed big in business, so bad is its reputation. One of the earliest business leaders recorded in history, Crassus, the wealthiest Roman ever, was of the same stripe. Greedy, unprincipled, arrogant, and crass. The very word "crass" comes from his name.

    For the most part, their charitable work looks like feeble attempts to make up for the damage they did to accomplish their rise, to buy love and popularity just like they buy everything else. And it's never above suspicion, as charitable contributions have been used and abused to dodge taxes.

  • by ATMAvatar ( 648864 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @11:51AM (#40274987) Journal

    Search for it. I am not your personal Google.

    The burden of evidence is on the person making a claim, not on the reader of said claim.

    Telling people to search for the evidence of your claims on their own is a strong indication that your claim is weakly-supported (even if it is not, like this instance). Otherwise, why would you not provide them up-front?

  • by sam_handelman ( 519767 ) <skh2003@columbia. e d u> on Sunday June 10, 2012 @12:15PM (#40275125) Homepage Journal

    In fact, no.

      I accidentally posted this anonymously farther down, but in fact Bill Gates has done tremendous harm with his so-called "philanthropy"; his real contribution is "leveraged philanthropy", where you use philanthropic donations to control something so that you make more money. This is true with his vaccine so-called "charity" - which forces poor nations to spend money from other sources on expensive foreign vaccines, rather than on development of local vaccine manufacturing or of general public health infrastructure, and thus actually degrades the quality of 3rd world health care while making Bill Gates his "charitable" money back and then some. This is true of his education so-called "charity" - which forces poor school districts to spend money from other sources on high-tech gadgets and expensive consulting services, which are sold by Bill Gates' various partners, but which are actually worse than no services at all.

    The Gates' foundation has announced a partnership with Pearson (for profit-education company) to develop and market materials aligned to the common core. These are the materials that your school district must agree to purchase (this particular test cost $32 million state wide) in order to qualify for Race to the Top. []
        So, Bill Gates is using a small amount of his "charitable" money to force public money in much larger amounts, to be wasted on this crap.

    Bill Gates wants to fit teachers with galvanic bracelets: []

    Bill Gates needs vaccines to be a "profit center" for his pharmaceutical buddies. I spelled this out above but read the comments. []

    Oh, hey, Bill Gates is using his agricultural charity to force the 3rd world to buy Monsanto's crops: []

  • by hey! ( 33014 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @12:24PM (#40275205) Homepage Journal

    No one was FORCED to buy Windows,

    That's right. The CHOSE to buy windows, rather than pay for alternatives whose costs and inconvenience were artificially inflated by Microsoft's abuse of its monopoly powers.

  • Re:hypocrisy (Score:5, Insightful)

    by JimCanuck ( 2474366 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @12:53PM (#40275445)

    If, however, you're writing this from a personal computer, smartphone, tablet, or anything with a GUI, then you must be a huge hypocrite, since you owe it to Steve Jobs for bringing those tools to the masses.

    William Shockley brought us the transistor in 1947.
    Texas Instruments created the first silicon transistor in 1954.
    The first computer meant to be small enough you could put it beside ones desk and have only one person operate it, was built by IBM in 1954, called the IBM 610.
    A group known as the "traitorous Eight", of engineers and scientists left Shockley's company in 1957 to form Fairchild Semiconductor making some of the first commercially viable transistors.
    Two from Bell Labs in 1960 created the first MOS transistor which would be the basis of digital electronics for many years.
    Two of the "traitorous Eight" who formed Fairchild went on to create Intel in 1968.
    Alan Kay, one of the people who designed the Xerox Alto, first proposed a "tablet" computer in 1968. Creating the concept that many would attempt over the years.
    Intel created their first SRAM memory in 1969, created the first processor (the Intel 4004) in 1971.
    Xerox Alto's created in 1973 was the first "desktop" computer to include a GUI and mouse, something both Jobs and Gates stole from to design their own OS's. Alan Kay by the way designed the GUI window system we still use today for this PC.
    The first "portable" computer was the IBM 5100 series, which could be carried around in one piece. Introduced in 1975.
    Intel created the Intel 8086 in 1978, which till this day its derivatives still dominates the computer processor market. Including the newest Mac Hardware.
    The IBM PC was released in 1981. After that, the rest is history, both the Intel x86 architecture, and the MS DOS became the dominate way to build computers, eating up the rest of the competition till there was virtually nothing left.

    Fast forward a few years ...

    Compaq released the first convertible slate/tablet PC back in 2003, as the TC1000. Where you could dock the touch screen monitor to a fully functional keyboard/laptop base and use it both as tablet and as a PC.
    Fujitsu ST5011D's came out in 2004 as a fully functional Windows Slate Machine.
    Motion LS800 was introduced as a fully functional Windows Slate machine in 2005.

    There are about a dozen more models that came out between then and now, but personally my first fully tablet PC, not a convertible or a docking model was the Archos 9, a fully functioning Windows 7 PC, first up for sale in October 2009 when I bought mine. Apple's initial iPad wasn't even for sale till April of 2010. A whole half year after I bought my first.

    So again other then the headaches of dealing with tech support issues on Mac's, how do I owe Apple anything?

  • by Zironic ( 1112127 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @01:00PM (#40275513)

    When it comes to what people remember you for, it doesn't matter so much what you did, but what people credit you for doing.

  • by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <> on Sunday June 10, 2012 @01:17PM (#40275671) Homepage Journal

    Right. "Force" people to use computers that were a vast improvement over what they had before,

    Uh what? Microsoft wasn't forcing people to use particular computers, they were forcing people to use particular operating systems, by illegally (in this country and apparently about everywhere in Europe, too) inducing vendors to eschew other operating systems as part of their contracts, with punitive action for those corporations which dared to offer choice to customers.

    What you and everyone else who thinks Gates has done more good than evil seems to be forgetting is that that's not Bill Gates' money that went into that foundation, it rightly belongs to too many people to count. What should have happened is that basically all of it (let him keep a few million, whatever) should have been seized and either just outright applied to the federal deficit (that sets an awful precedent but at least it would actually benefit pretty much everyone who had been harmed) or, better but more difficult to do well, spend it on improving oversight of corporations to ensure that the same kind of thing isn't happening in the present, and doesn't happen in the future.

    Instead, Bill Gates is still in control of the money behind the foundation. He ultimately decides how and where that money is invested, and where it is spent. How and where he decides to invest and spend it, of course, is in ways that benefit him personally, as he is (again, again, and again) personally, massively invested in big pharma.

    What a shortsighted nerd view.

    Right back atcha, me laddo. Billy boy is snerking at you all the way to the bank. He's snerking at me too, for my impotence; I certainly can't stop him, I can't even convince a quorum of bored nerds who have had to suffer with Microsoft's criminal activities for years that Bill Gates is not an angel.

  • by im_thatoneguy ( 819432 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @02:39PM (#40276443)

    Bill Gates is one of the greatest philanthropists to have ever lived because he ignores people like you.

    Instead of investing money in companies which have a low return (and will continue abusing the earth one way or another) he makes the pragmatic decision to put his money into at least capturing the profits of these companies and using their own profits to work against their interests. If you wanted to screw Microsoft you should have bought their stock and invested your returns in funding open source projects. That's a better use of your resources. "Voting with your dollars" doesn't work. They don't need your dollars. However, as a significant stock holder you do get voter rights. Vote with your stock. Get together with like minded share holders and vote in board members who are conducive to your cause. This is like the difference between the tea party and the occupy wall street movement. The Tea party is achieving their goals of dismantling government... by electing themselves government officials. If you want to change a corporation's behavior you don't try to ignore it you become the corporation's leadership and direct its behavior.

    And yes he's concentrating his philanthropy in areas that dollar for dollar pay of the most dividends. Instead of wasting money on trendy diseases he's simply seeing how many people can benefit and callously making those choices. This is what Philanthropy *needs*. Do 100 people in the Niger delta lose their charity so that 1,000 people in Darfur get their malaria medication? Yes. Because like an ER trauama ward you need to triage cases based on who has the best chance of using your limited resources most effectively. Sucks to be the person who doesn't get the resources but sucks less overall for all the people you help.

  • by Anubis IV ( 1279820 ) on Sunday June 10, 2012 @03:04PM (#40276649)

    Exactly the person I was going to compare Gates to. Gates made his billions and then turned philanthropist, just like Rockefeller. And similarly, he'll be remembered by some for doing so. His name isn't going away anytime soon, but it'll be an indistinct name that's generally well-regarded, though no one is sure why. The generations 100 years from now will remember him as someone who did something good with his money, though they'd be hard-pressed to say precisely what, just as most of us are likely hard-pressed to think of what specifically Rockefeller did for his philanthropy. I seriously doubt that he'll be remembered for curing malaria in the same sort of way that we think of Salk with polio.

    In contrast, I see Jobs being remembered for "his" inventions, in much the same way that Edison is credited for inventing a number of things that he actually just refined or made commercially viable. Jobs' name is the one that will receive credit in the history books for commercializing personal, tablet, and pocket computers thanks to the Mac, iPad, and iPhone, even though he wasn't alone on them and wasn't even the first to market for them. I doubt very much that his name will carry the same clout in 100+ years that Edison's name carries, but if tablet and mobile computing becomes more ubiquitous, I believe that his name is the one that will receive the credit for those.

    I would also hope that Jobs (and Jony Ive) would be remembered for reemphasizing and demonstrating the importance of design in products, but given that the world has largely already forgotten great designers from the past century, such as Dieter Rams, I doubt that he'll be remembered for that at all. Similarly, I expect that Apple will stray from that idea in the coming decades, in much the same way that Sony strayed from what made them great just a few decades ago.

Nothing ever becomes real till it is experienced -- even a proverb is no proverb to you till your life has illustrated it. -- John Keats