Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

The Entire D6 Interview With the Gates Foundation’s Melinda Gates (4 of 4)

We’re posting all the interviews from the sixth D: All Things Digital conference that took place in late May.

Unfortunately, due to issues too complicated to go into, we have to post all the D6 interviews in several 15-minute parts (I know, I know).

But–as many readers have requested–they will all be available in their entirety over the next weeks in this column.

Here’s Part 4 of 4 of an interview Walt Mossberg did with the Gates Foundation’s Melinda Gates.

(I posted one video part of the discussion with Melinda Gates every day this week, starting Monday and concluding today.)

As you will see, Melinda Gates is articulate in ways that are critical to the task that she and her husband–that would be Microsoft (MSFT) Founder Bill Gates–have put before themselves: Big league philanthropy with deeply effective results, specifically in health and learning.

In this video, Melinda Gates answers questions from the audience about the time frame for the foundation, models of philanthropy, how businesses can become more philanthropic, how to improve troubled schools by eliminating “facelessness,” entrepreneurs and how to get better teachers.


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We found that brainteasers are a complete waste of time. How many golf balls can you fit into an airplane? How many gas stations in Manhattan? A complete waste of time. They don’t predict anything. They serve primarily to make the interviewer feel smart.

— Google HR executive Laszlo Bock, telling the New York Times’ Adam Bryant that the company no longer asks applicants to complete mental gymnastics during job interviews. Via Quartz.