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October 18, 2000
 


Bill Gates Unplugged
By Jason Pontin
From the September 2000 issue

The day before Bill Gates, Microsoft's (Nasdaq: MSFT) chairman, delivered his keynote address to the Professional Developer's Conference in Orlando, Florida, we were summoned for an interview. We didn't know what to expect.

 CONTENTS
  Introduction

Dot.net
 -  Microsoft and standards
 -  Extending Windows to the Internet
 -  From software to service
 

 
  Hardware
 -  Set-tops and handhelds
 -  AOL and Sony
 
 
  Linux
 -  Linux in China
 -  Linux and the press
 
 
  Research
 -  The next new thing
 -  "Intentional programming"
 
 
  Bill's value-add
 -  A former CEO's reflections
 
 
  Flaming the DOJ
 -  Who wins?
 -  "Worse than dumb"
 -  No regrets
 
 
  Forum Discussion: Gates Unplugged

 

We had been allowed 30 minutes, and had agreed to ask only one question about the government's case against Microsoft. In the end, for whatever reason, Mr. Gates seemed to enjoy himself, and we talked for much longer: about Dot.net, Microsoft's new Internet strategy, and Microsoft's plans for Interactive TV, video games, and other devices; but more unexpectedly, we talked about Mr. Gates's bitterness at the government. He even said who, in his opinion, was responsible for the trial.

At the start of the interview, we discussed Microsoft's Dot.net strategy. Up to this point, we had been confused as to Microsoft's plans to make money from this ostensibly open product. As Mr. Gates explains, Dot.net is not the same as other completely open systems. It is, instead, a Microsoft platform -- just like Windows.

The first part of this interview was posted on July 31. This is the complete interview, and includes the following new sections: Hardware platforms; Linux; Research; and Flaming the DOJ. The interview will also appear in the September issue of Red Herring Magazine.

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