Bill Gates: Life Story, Bio and Facts

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Going by materialistic standards of wealth being directly proportional to “success”, Bill Gates is the most successful person the world ever saw. Going by un-materialistic standards of success being the accomplishment of tasks that are beneficial to many, Bill Gates is still among the most successful persons the world has ever seen.

Entrepreneurs are but leaders with visions and missions. To lead a company is to lead ideas and to lead a complex network of people and their set of aspirations. Business schools and self help books are available galore that promise to enlighten you with the theoretical knowledge about being an entrepreneur, and to enable you to be the leader that a company would need to evolve. Bill Gates, on the other hand, is a man whose practices were largely against what is typically advised by any book.

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This goes on to show that theoretical knowledge can only provide so much help in helping you understand the strings of running a business or any other institution, and it is your own views that are the true guide.

Bill Gates is a multi-faceted man who not only created history and delivered to the world, along with Paul Allen, the product that has revolutionarised the field of personal computers – Microsoft, besides stunning the world with his philanthropic work. His life bespeaks self confidence and the ability to spot an opportunity a mile away.

Bill Gates Life Story

William Henry Bill Gates III was born on 28 October 1955 in Seattle, and is of English, German and Scotch-Irish descent. His father was a prominent lawyer and his parents wished for their son to be one, too. However, when a young Bill approached them with a proposal to launch a software company of his own, they acknowledged his passion and supported him.

Bill’s first encounter with computer programs occurred when he was in the 8th grade and was introduced to working on General Electric (GE) computer, maintained by Computer Centre Corporation (CCC). He began developing BASIC at that young age.
He worked himself into trouble by exploiting bugs in the operating systems of the GE computers in schools to obtain free computer time. Bill and Paul Allen were among the 4 boys who were banned from using the system for exploiting the OS bugs. Bill was far from discouraged – at the end of the ban he offered to spot OS bugs for CCC in exchange for free computer time.

During his schooling life, Bill was also approached to write programs to meet various ends like payroll programs for commercial companies, and his own school asked him to write a program to distribute students in different classes. Bill, ever so cheeky, tweaked with his own program to place himself in a class wherein girls were the majority.

Gates went on to enroll himself at Harvard, and during his sophomore formulated an algorithm for pancake sorting to solve combinatronics problems, and his program was the fastest version for more than 3 decades, with the solution replacing it in speed being a mere 1% faster.

Gates and Allen maintained close contact with each other, and in 1975 when MITS Altair 8800 was launched, they spotted an opportunity. The duo contacted MITS to inform them they had developed a BASIC interpreter for Altair 8800 to gauge the interest of MITS and when they did get a return call from the company, they developed the program within a couple of weeks and approached the company. And with this started the mainstream work of the gentlemen.

Gates had taken leave from Harvard to work with MITS, and having tasted success that convinced him that he was quite the right guy for the job, he never returned to Harvard. In 1976, Microsoft, the brand that would soon be synonymous with operating system, was born and registered.

Bill wrote codes during the initial phase of the career and for the first five years, he is known to have read through every line of coding Microsoft ever sold. Later, he concentrated on developing product strategy, boldly expanding the range of products offered by Microsoft.

He was the archetypal hells-on-wheels boss, grilling his staff till they convinced him that a proposed product truly served the long-term interests of the company. He demanded dedication from all his employees, and strongly voiced out dissent against those who procrastinated.

In 2006, Gates slowly transitioned from full-time to part-time work at Microsoft and launched the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Inspired by the philanthropic work of Andrew Carnegie and John Rockefeller, Bill and Melinda pledged that they would distribute 95% of their wealth as charity. And this saying something as Bill was the world’s richest man from 1195 to 2007, and once more in 2009. He was dethroned once again in 2010, with the dot-com burst and his charitable work contributing to the drop in wealth.

Lessons from Bill Gates Story

Gates may not be the chief with the best interpersonal skills, but he did have a passion that commanded respect. His business strategies have been accused of being unfair and engendering monopoly, but the man stood his ground and defended himself and his decisions in the face of such accusations.

Also, Bill Gates is a man who nourished his own interests and commercial success was inevitable for him because of his dedication to his work. Had he placed a third party’s aspirations or suggestions above his own passion, the world would have lost out on a great visionary.

Another attribute of Bill Gates that one must learn from is his generosity, and insistence on true charity. Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is the largest charitable trust that functions transparently. The foundation has already donated more than $26 billion and has reached out to a wide range of needy populations, in developed, under-developed and developing nations.

What is note-worthy about Bill’s strategy is that he insists that the recipients of his donations record developed, and is known to have retracted help in the event that the recipient fails to develop effective strategies to alleviate the issue at hand.

One must learn to insist on excellence in order to succeed in reaching a set goal.

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Short Bio: Who is Bill Gates?

William Henry "Bill" Gates III is a co-founder of Microsoft Corporation, the world's largest personal-computer software company, and one of the pioneers of the personal computer revolution and the modern software industry. He is widely recognized as an entrepreneur and philanthropist. He was born on October 28, 1955, in Seattle, Washington. He attended Harvard University but dropped out to pursue his dream of starting a software company with his childhood friend Paul Allen. They formed the company Microsoft in 1975 and launched their first product, MS-DOS, in 1981. Microsoft's Windows operating system soon became the world's most widely used operating system for personal computers. Gates was the CEO and chairman of Microsoft until 2000 and then stepped down as CEO. He served as chairman and as an advisor to support the company's growth. Gates is also an accomplished philanthropist, and has donated billions of dollars through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which aims to improve global healthcare and reduce extreme poverty.

Bill Gates Fast Facts

Bill Gates Birthday: October 28, 1955
Bill Gates Height: 5′ 10″
Bill Gates Birthplace: Seattle, WA
Bill Gates Net Worth: As of 2021, Bill Gates' net worth was estimated to be around $130 billion. However, this number can fluctuate depending on various factors such as stock market performance and personal investments.

Here are some other facts about Bill Gates:

  • Bill Gates co-founded Microsoft Corporation in 1975, which is now the world's largest personal-computer software company.
  • He was the CEO and chairman of Microsoft until 2000, and played a pivotal role in the company's growth and success.
  • He is one of the best-known entrepreneurs in the world and his name is synonymous with the personal computer.
  • He is the second-richest person in the world, with a net worth of over $130 billion.
  • Bill Gates is also a philanthropist, and has donated billions of dollars through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which aims to improve global healthcare and reduce extreme poverty.
  • He is also a technology advisor to the US government, serving on several committees and boards, including the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.
  • Bill Gates is also an active investor, and his investment firm, Cascade Investment, has invested in a wide range of companies and industries, including energy, healthcare, and real estate.
  • He is also an author, and has written several books, including "The Road Ahead" and "Business @ the Speed of Thought."
  • He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Royal Society.
  • In 2020, Bill and Melinda Gates stepped down as leaders of their foundation to focus more on their personal lives, however they continue to support the foundation.

What is Bill Gates famous for?

Bill Gates is famous for co-founding Microsoft Corporation, the world's largest personal-computer software company. He is widely recognized as a pioneer of the personal computer revolution and the modern software industry. He was the CEO and chairman of Microsoft from 1975 until 2000 and played a pivotal role in the company's growth and success. He is one of the best-known entrepreneurs in the world and his name is synonymous with the personal computer. Additionally, He is also well-known for his philanthropy through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which aims to improve global healthcare and reduce extreme poverty.

Bill gates divorce

In May 2021, Bill and Melinda Gates announced that they were getting a divorce. They issued a joint statement saying that they had been working to separate their relationship for some time. They emphasized that they would continue to work together on their philanthropic foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which is one of the largest private foundations in the world, and that they would continue to be friends and parents to their three children. The divorce process was finalized on April 3rd,2022. The divorce is considered to be an amicable one and both Bill and Melinda continue to work together in their foundation.

What did bill gates invent?

Bill Gates is best known as the co-founder of Microsoft Corporation, the world's largest personal-computer software company. He did not invent any specific technology or product, but he played a key role in the development and popularization of personal computers and the software that runs on them. Along with his business partner Paul Allen, Gates developed the first version of the Microsoft Disk Operating System (MS-DOS), which was the software that allowed personal computers to operate. He then went on to develop the first version of the Microsoft Windows operating system, which became the most widely used operating system for personal computers. These operating systems, MS-DOS and Windows, were the foundation of Microsoft's success and made personal computing accessible to millions of people around the world. He also developed other software like Microsoft Office and Internet Explorer.

How did Bill Gates start Microsoft?

Bill Gates and Paul Allen, his childhood friend, started Microsoft Corporation in 1975. The company was originally called Micro-Soft, a combination of "microcomputer" and "software."

The two friends had a passion for computer technology and saw an opportunity to create software for personal computers, which were just starting to become available to consumers. They started working on software for the Altair 8800, one of the first personal computers on the market, and created a version of the BASIC programming language that could run on it. They then began selling the software to hobbyists and small companies.

In 1980, Microsoft signed a contract with IBM to develop an operating system for the IBM PC, which was one of the first widely-available personal computers. Microsoft developed MS-DOS (Microsoft Disk Operating System) and licensed it to IBM. MS-DOS became the standard operating system for the IBM PC and many other personal computers, and Microsoft's revenue grew rapidly.

In 1985, Microsoft introduced Windows, a graphical operating system that was an extension of MS-DOS. Windows became very popular, and it helped to make personal computers accessible to millions of people around the world.

With the success of Windows and other software like the Microsoft Office Suite, Microsoft became the world's largest personal-computer software company, and Bill Gates became one of the wealthiest and most influential people in the world.

Bill gates foundation

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is a private foundation that was founded by Bill and Melinda Gates in 2000. The foundation is focused on improving global healthcare and reducing extreme poverty, and it is one of the largest private foundations in the world. The foundation has several programs and initiatives that are aimed at improving healthcare and reducing poverty in developing countries.

One of the foundation's main initiatives is the Global Health Program, which aims to combat infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis, and to improve maternal and child health. The foundation has invested billions of dollars in research, development, and delivery of vaccines, drugs, and other health technologies, as well as in strengthening health systems in developing countries.

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The foundation also has a Development Program, which aims to reduce extreme poverty and improve the economic well-being of people in developing countries. The program's focus is on improving agricultural productivity, increasing access to financial services, and improving education and economic opportunities for women and girls.

The foundation also has a Global Policy & Advocacy Program, which aims to shape the public policy environment to support the foundation's work in global health and development.

In 2020, Bill and Melinda Gates stepped down as leaders of their foundation to focus more on their personal lives, however they continue to support the foundation.

Bill gates books

Here is a list of books authored by Bill Gates:

  • "The Road Ahead" (1995) - In this book, Gates describes his vision for how technology will shape the future and how it will change the way we live and work.
  • "Business @ the Speed of Thought" (1999) - In this book, Gates describes how technology can help businesses become more efficient and productive, and how it can be used to gain a competitive advantage.
  • "Showstopper!: The Breakneck Race to Create Windows NT and the Next Generation at Microsoft" (1994) - In this book, Gates provides an inside look at the development of the Windows NT operating system, one of the most significant products in Microsoft history.
  • "The Road Ahead for America" (1994) - This is a collection of speeches and articles by Gates on technology and its impact on society, as well as his vision for the future of America.
  • "Business @ the Speed of Thought: Using a Digital Nervous System" (2000) - This is an updated edition of "Business @ the Speed of Thought" with new insights and examples of how technology can be used in business.
  • "The Personal Computing Paradigm" (2003) - In this book, Gates explores the history and future of personal computing and its impact on society.
  • "The Third Wave: An Entrepreneur's Vision of the Future" (2016) - In this book, Gates offers his perspective on how the internet and technology will shape the future and how it will change the way we live and work.
  • "How to Avoid a Climate Disaster: The Solutions We Have and the Breakthroughs We Need" (2021) - This is a book that explains the science and politics of climate change, and lays out a plan for how the world can achieve a zero-carbon future.

Bill Gates is also an avid reader and has recommended many books throughout the years, here are some of the books he has recommended:

  • "The Better Angels of Our Nature" by Steven Pinker - This book explores the history of violence and how it has decreased over time, and how it can continue to decrease in the future.
  • "The Alchemist" by Paulo Coelho - A novel about following one's dreams and the importance of listening to one's heart.
  • "The Power of Habit" by Charles Duhigg - A book that explores the science of habit formation and how it can be used to create positive change in our lives.
  • "The Gene: An Intimate History" by Siddhartha Mukherjee - This book explores the history of genetics and its impact on society.
  • "Thinking, Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman - A book that explores the psychological processes of decision-making and how it can be improved.
  • "Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind" by Yuval Noah Harari - A book that provides a comprehensive history of humanity from the origins of mankind to the present day.
  • "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions" by Thomas S. Kuhn - A book that explores the nature of scientific progress and how it happens.
  • "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks" by Rebecca Skloot - A book that explores the story of a woman whose cancer cells were used to create the first immortal human cell line and the impact it had on the scientific world.
  • "The End of Alchemy: Money, Banking, and the Future of the Global Economy" by Mervyn King - A book that explores the history and future of money, banking and the global economy.
  • "The New New Thing: A Silicon Valley Story" by Michael Lewis - A book that provides an inside look at the Silicon Valley culture and the rise of the digital economy.

Please note that these are some books that Bill Gates has recommended in the past, but it's not a comprehensive list, and his taste in books may have changed over time.

Bill Gates Quotes

Favorite Quote: "We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten. Don't let yourself be lulled into inaction."

"Success is a lousy teacher. It seduces smart people into thinking they can't lose."

"If you can't make it good, at least make it look good"

"The Internet is becoming the town square for the global village of tomorrow."

"I'm a great believer that any tool that enhances communication has profound effects in terms of how people can learn from each other, and how they can achieve the kind of freedoms that they're interested in."

"The advance of technology is based on making it fit in so that you don't really even notice it, so it's part of everyday life."

"Climate change is a terrible problem, and it absolutely needs to be solved. It deserves to be a huge priority."

"I never took a day off in my twenties. Not one. And I'm still fanatical, but now I'm a little less fanatical."

"Historically, privacy was almost implicit, because it was hard to find and gather information. But in the digital world, whether it's digital cameras or satellites or just what you click on, we need to have more explicit rules - not just for governments but for private companies."

"Intellectual property has the shelf life of a banana."

"Software is a great combination between artistry and engineering."

"Security is, I would say, our top priority because for all the exciting things you will be able to do with computers - organizing your lives, staying in touch with people, being creative - if we don't solve these security problems, then people will hold back."

"The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency."

"It's fine to celebrate success but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure."

"Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning."

"I think it's fair to say that personal computers have become the most empowering tool we've ever created. They're tools of communication, they're tools of creativity, and they can be shaped by their user."

"I think it's fair to say that personal computers have become the most empowering tool we've ever created. They're tools of communication, they're tools of creativity, and they can be shaped by their user."

"Information technology and business are becoming inextricably interwoven. I don't think anybody can talk meaningfully about one without the talking about the other."

"In the long run, your human capital is your main base of competition. Your leading indicator of where you're going to be 20 years from now is how well you're doing in your education system."

"Discrimination has a lot of layers that make it tough for minorities to get a leg up."

"Drones overall will be more impactful than I think people recognize, in positive ways to help society."

"People always fear change. People feared electricity when it was invented, didn't they? People feared coal, they feared gas-powered engines... There will always be ignorance, and ignorance leads to fear. But with time, people will come to accept their silicon masters."

"I believe that if you show people the problems and you show them the solutions they will be moved to act."

"The worst pandemic in modern history was the Spanish flu of 1918, which killed tens of millions of people. Today, with how interconnected the world is, it would spread faster."

"I believe in innovation and that the way you get innovation is you fund research and you learn the basic facts."

Chief Editor

Tal Gur is an author, founder, and impact-driven entrepreneur at heart. After trading his daily grind for a life of his own daring design, he spent a decade pursuing 100 major life goals around the globe. His journey and most recent book, The Art of Fully Living, has led him to found Elevate Society.

 
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