Steve Jobs and Bill Gates Talk About the Beginnings

Here is a brief excerpt from an article by Valeria Maltoni (“Conversation Strategist”) in which she provides much of a conversation between Steve Jobs and Bill Gates. She includes a video. To read the complete article, check out others, and sign up for a free subscription to Learning Habit Weekly, please click here.

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The video footage is from the D5 conference where Steve Jobs and Bill Gates shared the stage. Each gets to answer Walter Mossberg’s question about what major contribution the other made to the industry.

At about minute 7.5, as Gates is getting deeper into engineering talk, Jobs says, “let me tell the story.” This alone shows how the two leaders’ lives converged over the years.

The conversation is peppered with data points about the not too distant past — for example, Gates says Windows ’95 was the year graphics interface became mainstream. According to Gates it was a combination of things, software, hardware, etc.

At minute 17 Jobs talks about how the people at Apple thought that for the company to win, Microsoft had to lose and how he felt that Apple had forgotten how to be Apple, because it didn’t have to be like Microsoft.

It’s interesting to hear both talk and to observe their styles and language choices — Jobs being the natural storyteller with the power of persuasion. He says the PC guy in the famous rivalry commercials has a big heart:

“PC Guy is what makes it all work.”

Gates is far more technical. At the time Microsoft was a much larger company than Apple. A fun soundbite from Gates:

“Steve is so known for his restraint.”

At some point Jobs says Apple sees itself as a software company that mostly doesn’t compete with what Microsoft does and that they don’t believe they will reach an 80% share of the PC market.

However, Apple did reach a milestone last year. Re/Code reports:

“Apple’s Macs now enjoy their highest-ever market share in the United States, according to IDC’s third-quarter report: The Mac is the third-largest PC seller in the U.S., with a 13 percent share.”

There’s a great discussion about local vs. cloud computing, and rich clients on mobile systems at about 30 minutes into the video that hints at where each company is projecting the next few years. Five years out Gates says, “I believe in the tablet form factor. I think you’ll have voice. I think you’ll have ink. You’ll have some way of having a hardware keyboard and some settings for that.”

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Here is a direct link to read the complete article, transcript, and video.

Handpicked by Fast Company magazine for her particular expertise and ability to augment and amplify its brand footprint, Valeria Maltoni is the strategist a number of Fortune 500 businesses with multiple brands, revenue streams, and audiences rely on for brand value and profitable business growth. Leaders in industries as diverse as media and entertainment, consumer goods, beauty, fashion & style, wellness, publishing, and technology tap Maltoni for her strategic mind and hands-on approach. A future-oriented business resource, she drives the creative execution of integrated marketing and communication programs.

To learn more about her, please click here.

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