Bill Gates at Mix and Mash

2 minute read

This should be fun. We’re just a few minutes away from Bill showing up at the Executive Briefing Center. It’s been quite a while since I last was in a meeting with Bill. Last time it was as an employee of Microsoft walking him through a review of ASP.NET and SQL Server caching. This time its as a customer.

There are only about 8-10 of us here and we each get to ask 2 questions.

I’m going to try and live blog the meeting.

Wow. It’s still intimidating. I was nervous just to introduce myself. Bill is now going through an overview of where they started and where the industry is at now. It’s interesting listening to him talk through what he sees happening in the next couple of years with interactive content and video.

He’s still geeky. Cool 🙂 Talking about some problems and how Microsoft is looking at technologies like Microsoft Surface (pictures forthcoming).

He has spent the last 10 minutes going through a really high-level vision of the services [Cloud Services] of the internet: sharing content, some thoughts on 3D web, etc. Talked about how moving “cross web” as you move from site to site that your data should follow you.

I asked Bill about how Social Software, like blogs, has changed how business happens. Specifically, looking at Microsoft and how as a company they have become more transparent starting in the late 1990s; was it motivation from the business that drove the transparency or was it the technology that enabled it?

His answer was that they have always wanted to get the message out and that the motivation was always there. Starting back in 1974 when he started Microsoft he was out trying to get the message out and that the motivation to talk about what they are doing/planning was always there. He then said he gives full credit to the technology for enabling them to more easily get the message out. He mentioned sites like Channel9 and how it now seems obvious to do what that site does with a camera and just going around and talking with people. Obviously there was more to it (and apparently we’ll get a full transcription of the chat) so I’ll hopefully post more later.

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