Best of bill gates interviews

At 58, Bill Gates is not solitary the richest man in the earth, with a luck that now surpasses $76 billion, but he might also be the most positive view. In his view, the globe is a huge operating system that just wants to be debugged. Gates' driving idea – the idea that liven up his life, that leaders his philanthropy, that keeps him late in his sleek book-lined office supervising Lake Washington, outside Seattle – is the hacker's notion that the code for these difficulties can be re-written, that mistakes can be fixed, that vast systems – whether it's Windows 8, worldwide poverty or climate alteration – can be enhanced if you have the right tools and the correct knowledge. The Gates & Melinda Gates Organization, the philanthropic foundation with a $36 billion donation that he runs with his wife, is like a huge startup whose target marketplace is human civilization.

Individually, Gates has very small Master of the Universe arrogance and, specified the scale of his riches, his possessions are modest: 3 home, 1 plane, no yachts. He attired loafers and khakis and V-neck sweaters. He frequently wants a haircut. His glasses haven't altered much in forty years. For entertaining, he attends bridge contests.

But if his social goals are modest, his knowledgeable scope is mind-boggling: weather, energy, agriculture, infectious diseases and education improvement, to term a few. He has earlier nuclear physicists aiding cook up nutritional cookies to feed the evolving globe. A polio SWAT group has previously spent $1.5 billion (and is loyal to additional $1.8 billion through 2018) to eradicate the virus. He's engineering superior toilets and funding research.

It's a long way from the initial days of the digital uprising, when Gates was nearly a caricature of a desirous monopolist hell-bent on installing Windows on each computer in the galaxy ("The trouble with Bill," Steve Jobs on one occasion told me, "is that he needs to take a nickel for himself out of each dollar that passes thru his hands"). But once Gates walked down as Microsoft chief executive in 2000, he found a method to transform his aggressive drive to triumph over the desktop into an aggressive drive to overcome poverty and sickness.

Now he's returning to Microsoft as a "technology guide" to, Microsoft's new chief executive. "Satya has inquired me to review the product ideas and come in and aid makes some quick choices and top choice some new directions," Gates told me as we communicated in his office on a rainy day some weeks ago. He estimates that he'll devote a 3rd of his time to Microsoft and two-thirds of his foundation and supplementary work.

But the Microsoft of now is nothing like the globe-dominating behemoth of the Nineties. The corporation remained shackled to the desktop for too extensive, while challengers – specifically, Apple & Google – progressed on to phones and tablets. And in its place of talking in visionary terms about the company's forthcoming, Gates talks of challenges that sound nearly mundane for a man of his determinations, like reinventing Windows and Office for the period of cloud computing. But in some techniques, that's not sudden: Unlike, say, Jobs, who come back to Apple with a religious zeal, Gates clearly has larger things on his mind than assuming out how to make spreadsheets practicable in the cloud.