Gates to Google: My Lyrical Technique Will Leave Your Body Weak
Much as Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates fancies himself untroubled by Google’s incursions into his software empire, they clearly do chafe him a bit. As they would anyone in his position. How difficult it must be to watch an upstart rival do to Internet search and online advertising what you did to the PC desktop–so far without drawing complaints that it’s abusing its market dominance. Who would have ever believed that Google’s “Do no evil” schtick would work for as long as it has?
It’s got to be frustrating, right? So Gates can be forgiven his occasional snipes at Google, even as nasty as they sometimes are. After all, they seem to be an annual event, not a daily one.
- 2005: “Google is still perfect, the bubble is floating and they can do everything. You should buy their stock at any price … We had a 10-year period just like that.”
- 2006: “They’re in this honeymoon phase of, Google can do anything at all times. If it was rumored they were doing pizza, you’d think it was going to be zero calories and free.”
- And now 2007, which sees Gates incredulous over the notion that Google could ever become a successful competitor in the smart-phone software market. “How many products, of all the Google products that have been introduced, how many of them are profit-making products? They’ve introduced about 30 different products; they have one profit-making product. So, you’re now making a prediction without ever seeing the software that they’re going to have the world’s best phone and it’s going to be free?”
Of course, all three of these quotes pale beside the remarks Gates made about Apple and it’s “I’m a Mac; You’re a dork” campaign earlier this year:
I don’t think the over 90% of the [population] who use Windows PCs think of themselves as dullards, or the kind of klutzes that somebody is trying to say they are. … I don’t know why [Apple is] acting like it’s superior. I don’t even get it. What are they trying to say? Does honesty matter in these things, or if you’re really cool, that means you get to be a lying person whenever you feel like it? There’s not even the slightest shred of truth to it.
“You can go through and look at who showed any of these things first, if you care about the facts. If you just want to say, ‘Steve Jobs invented the world, and then the rest of us came along,’ that’s fine. If you’re interested, [Vista development chief] Jim Allchin will be glad to educate you feature by feature what the truth is. I mean, it’s fascinating, maybe we shouldn’t have showed so publicly the stuff we were doing, because we knew how long the new security base was going to take us to get done. Nowadays, security guys break the Mac every single day. Every single day, they come out with a total exploit, your machine can be taken over totally. I dare anybody to do that once a month on the Windows machine. So, yes, it took us longer, and they had what we were doing, user interface-wise. Let’s be realistic, who came up with [the] file, edit, view, help [menu bar]? Do you want to go back to the original Mac and think about where those interface concepts came from?”