When GATES come crashing through the home of WINDOWS
MS celebrates 30 years this year, WINDOWS its 20th and Bill his 50th! What a theatrical exit for a man and an icon!
For these past years, Bill has always been synonymous to MS. BIll co-created MS when he was 20, and was there all this while, albeit changing role from CEO to Chief Architect. Putting aside how many feels about this arrogant company, the man has probably done lots - good and bad - for the ICT industry and the world as a whole.
His recent comment on 'nothing good came out of being the richest man in the world' caught many by surprise but I think it was one of his most sincere remark yet. He has lost his privacy, scrutinised every step of the way and hounded to give more and s never enough.
Through the Gates Foundation, with his family, he has promised and contributed millions and billions for health causes and to bridge the digital divide.
However, how much of what he preached becomes reality and how much of that reality was executed in the spirit that produced it? Many said they don't care, as long as it delivers its benefits. Many are also shallow in the way they think.
Many has cursed the man, many has praised him. Many have never met who they are cursing nor praising. I have had the privilege of meeting and managing one of his visits.
Bill to me is an introvert. His image is the one that is extrovert. People around him are so afraid to upset him. Even to offer him a chair when he is obviously tired or a drink when he is vocally hoarse. Many thinks he is 'untouchable' from a godly perspective. I treated him as a respectable man and offered him a chair and a diet coke and survived to tell it.
Bill has an image that is bigger than the man. This is good for stock prices - sometimes - but not good for the man.
MS has been talking about infusing new blood for sometime. But until old blood gets flushed, new blood in this rather tightly networked and very rich company has no chance. It is a company that not only cherishes its past success but live in it.
So is this a PR stint? Is this really Bill leaving and have nothing to do with MS? Will Steve be next to go? Both are billionaires and are on the top 20 of the world's richest list.
So the jury should still be out.
Whatever it is, times will change for MS, with or without Bill. With the onslaught of Google and LINUX, MS may find that the easy success in the past will remain in the past.