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Gates has new toilets, bug zappers and even nuclear reactors in the works

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates showed a bit of emotion when discussing his last meeting with former Apple CEO Steve Jobs in a recent interview, and even demonstrated some of his latest technologies that aim to save lives. 

Journalist Charlie Rose interviewed Gates on CBS' 60 Minutes this week, where Gates opened up about his relationship with Jobs -- who died from complications with pancreatic cancer in October 2011 -- and showed off technologies that he hopes will aid his philanthropic work. 

When Rose asked Gates about Jobs, Gates showed a rare, emotional reaction to the topic. He described a meeting with Jobs right before he died, where the two talked about issues like electronic devices helping education and even about a boat Jobs was building just for fun. 

Gates' eyes welled up slightly when talking about their lives as both friends and rivals. 

"He and I, in a sense, grew up together," said Gates. "We were within a year of the same age, and we were kind of naively optimistic and built big companies. And every fantasy we had about creating products and learning new things-- we achieved all of it. And most of it as rivals. But we always retained a certain respect and communication, including even when he was sick."

While helping to run Microsoft and competing with Apple is a large part of Gates' life, it's not his whole life. 

Gates is currently chairman of Microsoft. He stepped down as CEO in 2000 (handing off the title to Steve Ballmer) and quit day-to-day duties as the company's chief software architect in 2006. 

Now, Gates focuses on his philanthropy. Through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, he aims to help what he calls the "bottom two billion" -- which is a third of the world's population (mainly in developing countries) who live on less than $2 a day. 

Gates wants to help these areas and the rest of the world by eradicating polio by 2018, tuberculosis in about six to seven years and malaria in about 20 years. He also wants to improve nutrition and agriculture. How? Through new technologies he's creating, of course.

One of these inventions is a thermos that can keep vaccines cool in developing countries, where electricity is hard to come by. Gates turned to Seattle-based company Intellectual Ventures (where he is an investor and inventor) to create the thermos, which can keep vaccines cold for 50 days on a single batch of ice. It can hold vaccines for about 200 children. 

Gates also set out to address another problem: two and half billion people in the world do not have satisfactory toilets, meaning that fecal matter and urine is often in water and right out on the streets. This leads to the spread of disease. 

Gates sought to fix this by launching a contest last year which asked participants to create a toilet without plumbing, but safely got rid of waste. There were 20 contestants with a variety of ideas ranging from burning to use of lasers. One of the winners that is being made into a prototype processes the waste inside the toilet and recycles the water throughout the system. 

In March of this year, Gates launched another interesting contest: create a condom men will actually want to use. This would help prevent the spread of HIV.

As far as malaria goes, Gates has worked on a bug zapper that uses a laser to shoot and kill malaria-infected mosquitoes. 

Finally, Gates showed off a new nuclear reactor that would burn depleted uranium, which could prove to be cleaner, safer and cheaper than traditional reactors. It has a fuel supply of 60 years, meaning it doesn't have to be opened up and refueled often. He hopes to have a prototype by 2022.

Source: CBS News

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By Motoman on 5/13/2013 12:41:33 PM , Rating: 5
Gates has become one of the most generous philanthropic people the world has ever seen - the efforts of he and his wife have saved and improved countless lives in impoverished areas of the world.

Jobs, on the other hand, was the greatest con artist of the modern age. A kind of reverse Robin Hood, conning large amounts of money from everyone to give to...himself.

RE: Yup
By BRB29 on 5/13/2013 1:04:07 PM , Rating: 2
I guess in comparison, Steve Jobs pales versus Bill Gates and Warren Buffet. I don't thin it's fair to accuse him of being a con artist.
Steve Jobs forced an entire industry to improve quality in their products. He did not con anyone. The apple premium is not for everyone but it is there for those you wanted a simple and high quality piece of tech.

Don't berate him because he was a good businessman and not a big philanthropist.

Bill Gates will definitely be in the history books while Steve Jobs may only get a brief mention here and there in some business books.

RE: Yup
By amanojaku on 5/13/2013 1:36:57 PM , Rating: 5
Bill Gates will definitely be in the history books while Steve Jobs may only get a brief mention here and there in some business books.
Funny, all I ever hear is people praising Steve Jobs, even now. I never hear anyone mention Bill Gates. I never liked Gates when he ran Microsoft, but as he stepped up his philanthropic efforts he made it clear he was a hell of human being in comparison.

And Jobs WAS a con artist. How many times did he lie about the things Apple "created"? My favorite being multi-touch, PURCHASED from

2007 -
1991 -

And quality? Really?

The company claims to prohibit 3rd party clones because it improves quality, yet the above articles show this isn't always the case.

And good business man? He was forced out of Apple, and NeXT was a failure.

RE: Yup
By BRB29 on 5/13/2013 2:07:09 PM , Rating: 3
Did you also realize that Apple was only successful with Steve Jobs? and this you miss this little information?

I hear people praise Bill Gates all the time, almost every day. Bill Gates is in Forbes on the regular. He is constantly mentioned in many articles, media, and even kids "I want to be like Bill Gates when I grow up". I can't say I ever hear Steve Jobs instead. The Gates foundation is constantly talked about in the humanitarian side. His Foundation is the largest in the world. Whenever someone mentions anything about Warren Buffet then Bill Gates name follows and vice versa. Bill Gates is a household name while Steve Jobs is a household names usually for people who are materialistic or keep up with tech.

Quoting forums discussions? really? is there any one product that doesn't have complaints or faults?
The quality is there in their product. They also have great customer service. Their fail rate is also fairly low compared to the rest of the industry.

RE: Yup
By Mitch101 on 5/13/2013 2:15:20 PM , Rating: 3
I dont like Steve either but he was a good salesman and did take good ideas and make them great even if not all of them was his own and sometimes invention is improving on and existing item.


NeXT Computer
Jobs Founded in 1985 with $7 million
Apple purchased NeXT on December 20, 1996, for $429 million and 1.5 million shares of Apple stock.

What people fail to realize or acknowledge Apple can make mistakes. Lisa Computer, Newton, CyberDog, Pippin, RoKR, EWorld, Puck.

In order to be fair Google and Microsoft fail too. Google TV, Chromebook, and Windows RT, BoB, MS Money.

RE: Yup
By MaulBall789 on 5/13/2013 3:21:09 PM , Rating: 2
He was forced out of Apple,

...after which Apple nearly died without him, and may still again.

and NeXT was a failure.

...but became the basis for OSX when Jobs returned to Apple. NeXT was just a little ahead of its time.

Hate on the guy all you like, but you can't take away what Jobs was able to accomplish with Apple. And if it weren't for Jobs, Gates and Microsoft might not have been nearly as successful. GUI and object oriented programing would have still been in its infancy. Tablets would still be a niche item, if that. Smartphones/Android wouldn't exist at all.

Jobs forced the envelope on a lot of these things, even though he didn't develop the tech himself. He saw potential in tech that others discarded or didn't have a use for. He took big risks and though some didn't work, the ones that did paid off big to the tune of $100B in pure profit over just the year and a half since he died.

Without Jobs Apple is starting to look more and more like just another computer company. May as well be Acer but with $140B of liquid cash at its disposal.

One could also say that without Jobs as a foil, Gates would not have been able to amass the fortune with which to start his foundation that helps so many people throughout the world.

You don't get much better at business than that.

RE: Yup
By KoolAidMan1 on 5/14/2013 2:51:50 AM , Rating: 1
...but became the basis for OSX when Jobs returned to Apple. NeXT was just a little ahead of its time.

It was also the leading development platform of its time. It was used for everything from the first web browser and web server to the platform DOOM and Quake were made on. Windows and MacOS were toys in comparison, Nextstep was at least a decade ahead of its time.

Hate on the guy all you like, but you can't take away what Jobs was able to accomplish with Apple. And if it weren't for Jobs, Gates and Microsoft might not have been nearly as successful. GUI and object oriented programing would have still been in its infancy. Tablets would still be a niche item, if that. Smartphones/Android wouldn't exist at all.

Jobs forced the envelope on a lot of these things, even though he didn't develop the tech himself. He saw potential in tech that others discarded or didn't have a use for.

Exactly. Who invented the individual components is one thing, but putting them in a package that everybody could use is another. Calling him a con artist makes no sense when his company's execution on mass market products is the one that everyone emulated.

Without Jobs Apple is starting to look more and more like just another computer company. May as well be Acer but with $140B of liquid cash at its disposal.

Jobs passing wasn't just a loss for Apple, its arguably an even bigger loss for the entire industry. I don't see any other tech companies leading the charge like he did.

RE: Yup
By Argon18 on 5/13/13, Rating: -1
RE: Yup
By Kiffberet on 5/14/2013 8:06:52 AM , Rating: 2

Yeah, 'cause IBM DOS was so much better...

Without MS, PC's probably would've faded away and Apple would rule the desktop world.

RE: Yup
By BRB29 on 5/15/2013 8:28:38 AM , Rating: 2
Argon, what are you thinking bro?

RE: Yup
By KCjoker on 5/13/2013 7:47:08 PM , Rating: 2
Jobs was a con artist. He liked to pretend to be for the people but he was all about himself. That makes him no better or worse than most but his problem was to foster the idea he WAS different. The biggest problem is so many still believe it.

RE: Yup
By KoolAidMan1 on 5/14/2013 2:57:36 AM , Rating: 2
Jobs' public figure was always prickly and selfish and he didn't much seem to care.

RE: Yup
By xti on 5/14/2013 11:27:02 PM , Rating: 3
where does it say that every business guy needs to be a nice humanitarian?

what he did for the tech world is incredible. I dont care if he helped old ladies cross the street.

RE: Yup
By kleinma on 5/13/2013 1:07:34 PM , Rating: 5
Key there is "has become". I am a microsoft guy and have more respect for gates than jobs, but lets be honest here. The guy was a ruthless business man who didn't care about stepping on other companies on his way to bring his company to the top. In that way, he was a lot like jobs. I also have heard stories from MS alum about gates being nearly as nasty to employees as jobs was when he thought they weren't doing a good enough job.

The difference is at some point gates decided to change his focus, and it has been for the greater good. Jobs never made that shift, and even if he had stayed healthy, i don't think he ever would have.

Gates has much less of an ego. At least external ego.

RE: Yup
By ppardee on 5/13/2013 1:44:14 PM , Rating: 2
But even in his ruthlessness, Gates improved the world to an unimaginable degree. The business practices of MS forced a unification of operating systems. There may have been better operating systems out there, but it didn't matter if no one knew how to use them.

I know I can sit down at any computer and there is a 97% chance that it will have Windows. Without Gates' and MS's 'forceful' licensing practices, that would have happened eventually, but it could have delayed PC development 5 or 10 years, but you'd probably still have some OS2 hold-outs and Linux/Unix would likely have a larger market share.

RE: Yup
By lelias2k on 5/13/2013 2:55:20 PM , Rating: 3
IMHO that has much more to do with market maturation leading to the choice of a preferred OS than Gates' being ruthless, but that's very debatable for sure.

RE: Yup
By BRB29 on 5/13/2013 3:38:12 PM , Rating: 2
You mean tablets and smartphones are not apple innovations but no one before Jobs has implemented it in a slick and useful package. Not only that, it was excellent and created a mass market demand for it. It took years until the competitor catch up.
You can say a big reason why there's a push for higher res is because apple forced it. Steve Jobs pushed quality for hardware and software package to a new level. He did not innovate or invent any of it though.

RE: Yup
By KoolAidMan1 on 5/14/2013 3:01:21 AM , Rating: 2
Debateable for sure. Windows dominance might have been inevitable, but Microsoft's coercion and fining of OEMs over Windows licenses definitely helped.

Bundling IE in the Windows was never a big deal to me, but what they did in the 90s by threatening OEMs if they carried other operating systems or sold hardware without an operating system was brutal.

RE: Yup
By Skywalker123 on 5/14/2013 9:13:56 AM , Rating: 1
The money Gates has donated will only result in a higher population of poor people that will rape the environment and destroy what is left of the African animals. The increased population will only die in a future starvation crisis.

RE: Yup
By Fujikoma on 5/14/2013 5:48:30 PM , Rating: 2
Not really. Family planning and better access to sanitation/medicine tends to cut down on the population. Educated U.S., Japan and Europe both have negative population growth. Typically, a non-educated/fundmentalist society has excessive population growth. China deals with its growth by limiting children, which is why there is an extreme inbalance among the male/female population.
Current industrialized nations are enjoying the 'free-rider' syndrome of technology. That's fine, until everyone else wants to do the same thing. At that point, humans have to deal with their excessive pollution and waste of materials.
Poor is not just an African problem. Raping the environment has already been perfected by the current industrialized nations, so why the discimination on letting someone else join the party? In the U.S., it's acceptable to denigrate energy efficiency with no or false evidence. I'm amazed that my own country has turned away from doing things better, in order to promote the argument that we should just be allowed to use the worst because some people feels it's their right to not dwell in reality of what defines society.

RE: Yup
By Skywalker123 on 5/15/2013 7:59:45 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe in 30yrs, the population of Africa will double before it levels off. The environment and animals are doomed. yeh, we screwed our continent why shouldnt they screw theirs? makes a lot of sense

RE: Yup
By BRB29 on 5/15/2013 8:31:51 AM , Rating: 2
Do you realize that people in poor countries have lots of kids to ensure survival?

What Gates is doing is ensuring survival so they don't have to have so many kids.

RE: Yup
By Skywalker123 on 5/15/2013 7:47:22 PM , Rating: 1
thats not why they have lots of kids, clue: they dont have a lot of recreational activities other than fucking.

This man
By BRB29 on 5/13/2013 12:53:19 PM , Rating: 5
There are many who hates on and make fun of Bill Gates. It is mostly because he is filthy rich and they are not. The fact is, he donates more money than all of Hollywood's celebrity by a overwhelming multiple(over $30bil). Not only that, he does not use it as publicity to advance his career like everyone else.

This guy is my hero.

RE: This man
By techxx on 5/13/2013 3:51:48 PM , Rating: 2
Wish Gates would send me a few million, but I still respect the guy! After all, Microsoft has added far more value to my life than Apple ever did.

RE: This man
By KoolAidMan1 on 5/14/2013 2:55:13 AM , Rating: 2
I'm a Windows guy and even I know how much Microsoft owes to Apple. They indirectly added to your life based on how much Microsoft has taken from them for the last 30+ years.

RE: This man
By cfaalm on 5/14/2013 2:55:25 PM , Rating: 2
Microsoft also invested in Apple when they we're 50 miles from the next town and two feet from hell. I guess they sometimes wish they hadn't, but they did.

RE: This man
By FaaR on 5/13/13, Rating: 0
RE: This man
By BRB29 on 5/14/2013 7:51:30 AM , Rating: 2
and what you don't want to realize is that any competitive company will run other businesses to bankruptcy. The tech industry is fast paced and brutal. Back in those days, Gates had to compete with IBM and Apple and Microsoft was the underdog compared to IBM.

I think you're just hating on his success. Stop hating it's contagious.

Steve Jobs the only time I've ever rooted for...
By ipay on 5/13/2013 1:31:17 PM , Rating: 3

By Reclaimer77 on 5/13/2013 1:33:31 PM , Rating: 2
lol man, +6

By vortmax2 on 5/14/2013 12:57:28 PM , Rating: 2
When one starts rooting for death, one dies inside.

3rd world toilets
By ptmmac on 5/13/2013 6:01:44 PM , Rating: 2
This is one of those civilizing inventions that just can't be properly emphasized. Even when we had no toilets, we had the space to give everyone some privacy to use a privy. The density of the population in India, China made this impossible before technology improved lifestyles. The costs in human suffering from the lack of privacy is rarely discussed, but it may be almost as important for women avoiding kidnapping and rape to have a toilet in the home where they can be safe and protected.

I would also say that Jobs believed that anonymous gifts were a better way to help, both for the giver and the recipient. Steve was not as philanthropic as Bill. No one else has come close. The world will be a better place because Bill decided to do more than enjoy the fruits of his success. Or perhaps he was just smart enough to realize nothing is more satisfying than doing successful philanthropy. It is really hard to give away money without poisoning the recipient. Bill seems to be capable of doing this which is just plain amazing.

RE: 3rd world toilets
By ShaolinSoccer on 5/13/2013 9:24:20 PM , Rating: 2
Financial Education
By cindywu on 5/14/2013 7:25:50 AM , Rating: 2
Bill Gates now works to give his billions of dollars away to charities and causes in need of his help. Apparently he was just as generous in friendship as he is with his charity, even when that friendship was with his own biggest rival. Keep your friends close and your enemies closer appears to be a motto that Bill Gates actually lives by.

By p05esto on 5/14/2013 6:52:37 PM , Rating: 2
I want to kiss Bill Gates while I'm glad that SOB Steve Jobs is dead. Gates is a class act and truly the man. He should come back to Microsoft for a few years and clean up the mess that Balmer made of things. MS stock would go through the roof and the company would rise from the ashes should Gates ever return. Seriously, MS needs Gates right now. The sh** coming out of MS these days is ticking me off.

"Death Is Very Likely The Single Best Invention Of Life" -- Steve Jobs

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