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Mac says hello to PC (Source:

The two most important men in computing (Source:

The hosts help keep things rolling (Source:
Microsoft and Apple leaders speak on each other, commercials, Xbox, iPod and more

Microsoft and Apple Computer are the yin and yang of the computer world. Without either of them, the technology landscape would not be as it is today. At the head of those two very different, but significant companies are equally different and significant individuals: Bill Gates and Steve Jobs.

The two pioneers are often at the center of the stage preaching the latest innovations for their respective companies, but rarely do they share the same stage. Bill Gates and Steve Jobs appeared together at this year’s D: All Things Digital conference, an annual gathering coordinated by the Wall Street Journal.

The session began with each leader asked to say what the other has contributed to the industry. Jobs started, “Well, you know, Bill built the first software company in the industry and I think he built the first software company before anybody really in our industry knew what a software company was, except for these guys. And that was huge. That was really huge. And the business model that they ended up pursuing turned out to be the one that worked really well, you know, for the industry. I think the biggest thing was, Bill was really focused on software before almost anybody else had a clue that it was really the software.”

Then Gates started with a joke, “First I want to clarify, I'm not Fake Steve Jobs,” referring to the notorious blog. “What Steve's done is phenomenal. Back in 1977, the Apple II, the idea that it would be a mass-market machine and an incredibly empowering phenomenon. And the Macintosh, that was so risky. Apple really bet the company, Lisa hadn't done that well, but the team that Steve built within the company to pursue that, some days it felt a little ahead of its time. Remember the Twiggy disk drive and...” – Jobs interjected, “128K!”

Gates continued, “In a certain sense, we build the products we want to use ourselves. He's really pursued that with an incredible taste and elegance and had a huge impact on the industry. Apple literally was failing when Steve went back and reinfused innovation and risk-taking that have been phenomenal. So the industry has benefited immensely from his work. I'd say he's contributed as much as anyone.”

The two then went over some historical bits, arriving eventually to 1997, when Steve Jobs returned to Apple. Jobs recalls his thoughts from that time, recorded by the D5 website, “If the game was a zero-sum game where if Apple wanted to win, Microsoft had to lose, then Apple was going to lose. But Apple didn’t have to beat Microsoft. It had to remember what Apple was. Microsoft was the biggest software developer around, and Apple was weak. So I called Bill up.”

Although Bill Gates and Steve Jobs are popularly portrayed as rivals, especially in the movie the Pirates of Silicon Valley, the Apple leader says that his company’s close ties with Microsoft is very important. “The developer relationship between Microsoft and Apple is one of the best we have,” said Jobs.

A bit of a rivalry does appear on the topic of the Mac ads that appear all over the web and television. Bill Gates referred to the ads as lies in an interview back in February, “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.”

Back on stage, Job defended the purpose of the ads, saying, “The art of those commercials is not to be mean, but for the guys to like each other. The PC Guy is great… The PC Guy is what makes it all work.”

Gates had only to say, “PC guy’s mother loves him.” The two hosts of the session chimed in to add that they liked PC guy too.

Moving away from current spats and towards the current products, Jobs cited Alan Kay as once saying, “People that love software want to build their own hardware.” Although Microsoft has its own hardware devices with the Xbox consoles and the Zune, Jobs is referring to any potential desire Microsoft may have to build machines specifically to run Windows.

One of the forum hosts had brought up an interesting anecdote: at one point, Microsoft was for a while the biggest purchaser of a certain Mac tower for the use of Xbox 360 development software. Gates then added, “I don’t know if it was the biggest, but, yeah, we had the same processor essentially that the Mac had. This is one of those great ironies is they were switching away from that processor while the Xbox 360 was adopting it. But for good reasons, actually, in both cases. Because we’re not in a portable application and that was one of the things that that processor road map didn’t have. But yes, it shows pragmatism, but we try and do things that way. So that was the development system for the early people getting their software ready for the introduction of Xbox 360.”

Jobs then shifted the attention to Apple’s leading hardware innovation, the iPod, and a key reason why it is so successful. “If you look at the reason that the iPod exists and the Apple’s in that marketplace, it’s because these really great Japanese consumer electronics companies who kind of own the portable music market, invented it and owned it, couldn’t do the appropriate software, couldn’t conceive of and implement the appropriate software. Because an iPod’s really just software. It’s software in the iPod itself, it’s software on the PC or the Mac, and it’s software in the cloud for the store. And it’s in a beautiful box, but it’s software.”

Jobs and Gates were both there at the modern computer revolution, and they are still here today, furthering progress. “When Bill and I first entered the industry, we were the youngest guys in the room, and now we’re the oldest. I tend to think of things in terms of either Dylan or Beatles songs. And there’s that one line in that Beatles song, 'You and I have memories longer than the road that stretches out ahead,' and I think that’s clearly true here,” concluded Jobs.

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One has to wonder...
By therealnickdanger on 6/1/2007 12:38:08 PM , Rating: 3
Are they plotting something? I know they have worked together to some extent behind the scenes, but if this public outing is the first of more to come, I would expect some sort of joint-venture announcement in the future.

RE: One has to wonder...
By Anosh on 6/1/2007 12:52:38 PM , Rating: 3
I think I'd like it very much if they developed an underlying system were software would run in both MS and Apple OS.

Even though it would probably not happen in the near future an OS designed by your joint-venture would probably have many things to offer.

RE: One has to wonder...
By PrezWeezy on 6/1/2007 1:05:42 PM , Rating: 5
Nah. The reason they are both so successful is that they are different. I know people who love the mac, I love the PC. We use it for different things and I don't want to own a Mac, they don't want a PC. I think them being able to capitalize on their own niche is best. Although the sharing of ideas is always a good thing too. Just my thoughts.

RE: One has to wonder...
By Hare on 6/1/2007 6:45:58 PM , Rating: 2
Very well said. I own both and I can't really say which one is my favourite (Vista vs OS X). Both have unique strengths and weaknesses.

RE: One has to wonder...
By Oregonian2 on 6/1/2007 1:40:08 PM , Rating: 3
Even though it would probably not happen in the near future an OS designed by your joint-venture would probably have many things to offer.

Probably not legal either. The EU would be REALLY in a bad mood if Apple applications would then be "forced to" (they'd put it that way) run on a Microsoft OS. Conspiracy theorists would have it be a plot to do away with Apple specific application software and Windows to rule that little they don't already.

RE: One has to wonder...
By JoeBanana on 6/2/2007 8:04:12 AM , Rating: 2
That is a very sarcastic comment.:D But in this case I think it would be the other way around. They would like to run apps on both OS. And in that case they can also sue them cuz they currently don't run on both systems :P
But seriously I would like to see all apps work on both OS and then you can choose which apps will you use. In that case the customer wins. :D

RE: One has to wonder...
By mars777 on 6/3/2007 12:58:41 AM , Rating: 3
No, the only thing the EU would need is equality between competition.
They would force Microsoft to make a Linux compatible version if there was a Mac compatible version.

As much as this wouldn't pass in the US law system, a BSD(Mac) to Linux port wouldn't require much work, and in this case I would back-up the EU mentality. Just for the sake of compatibility vs duopolization of the market.

If Apple and Microsoft would run along with each other shaking hands, there WOULD NEVER BE any other OS software on EARTH, until they fade away somehow.
They would simply be hampering the market if they had joint-venture :(

RE: One has to wonder...
By mars777 on 6/3/2007 1:06:56 AM , Rating: 1
I am not trying to say that they improved the market, but everything they did is commercialize already done ideas.
This is where the open source community fails.
Open source invented everything from the lowest kernel lines of the Linus OS to the highest conception ideas of the MS OS. From the lowest lines of the OpenGL extensions to the X server to the highest conceptions of the Avalon in Vista, since one was the succesor to the other.
If the Open Source community could be able to commercialize better, the ones from this article would be bleeding much more. Then we would see COMPETITION.

RE: One has to wonder...
By mars777 on 6/3/2007 1:11:27 AM , Rating: 2
I am not trying to say that they improved the market, but everything they did is commercialize already done ideas.

Change to:
I am not trying to say that they DID NOT improve the market, but everything they did is commercialize already done ideas.

Sorry, too many things are happening around me at the moment, and i'm not able to run so many threads :D

RE: One has to wonder...
By FITCamaro on 6/1/2007 3:54:10 PM , Rating: 4
Maybe they can work on a venture to end the annoying Mac commercials plaguing TV. I'm getting tired of them.

RE: One has to wonder...
By GoodBytes on 6/1/2007 7:08:30 PM , Rating: 2
Thank you! Someone agrees with me!

RE: One has to wonder...
By Aprime on 6/1/07, Rating: 0
RE: One has to wonder...
By ksherman on 6/1/2007 1:18:00 PM , Rating: 1
Kinda thinking the same thing... not that their sources are bad, but just that it wasnt posted till today.

RE: One has to wonder...
By KristopherKubicki on 6/1/2007 1:19:29 PM , Rating: 3
Friday filler -- lol. We had more interesting things going on during the week.

RE: One has to wonder...
By ksherman on 6/1/2007 2:54:31 PM , Rating: 2
haha, makes sense!

RE: One has to wonder...
By bkm32 on 6/1/2007 1:17:22 PM , Rating: 1
THE IBOX 3000!

It's still in development, but the hardware is designed by Apple, while software, et al by MS. It connects wirelessly to all MS and Apple products, runs Vista and OS X virtually, but doesn't have an internal HD-DVD drive, only DVD9.

Just kidding, although a combined Apple-MS videogame system would upend the PC and console gaming world.

RE: One has to wonder...
By peritusONE on 6/1/2007 7:40:48 PM , Rating: 2
although a combined Apple-MS videogame system would upend the PC and console gaming world.

Ya, I can see it now. With Apple's mantra of simple, but pretty, we'd be playing versions of Pac-Man built with the Gears of War engine :D. The way the pellets all over the screen reflect the image of the ghosts coming upon them will look amazing!

RE: One has to wonder...
By Treckin on 6/8/2007 11:09:15 PM , Rating: 2
Best two posts Ive read in a month...
Iflock Box 300

Also,I second the motion to end the mac ads. They are immature, untrue, and pointlessly and overly confrontational. I would have thought that Apple would have realized how demeaning their commercials are to their customers. They basically deliver the message "If you are incredibly stupid and electronically handicapped, are scared of touching you computer because it might melt or eat your first born son, then the ibox is the machine for you. HEY! hears an idea, we'll just play on that fear and ignorance, package your computer in fake chrome and shiny plastic assembled by 4 year old girls living in tyranny, and charge you double!!!"

Forgive the exaggeration, I though it was warranted, and its Friday.

RE: One has to wonder...
By someguy123 on 6/1/2007 2:24:26 PM , Rating: 3
I believe this "outing" showed that they already plotted behind the scenes without the general public realizing it.

By iFX on 6/1/07, Rating: 0
RE: Haha
By Hare on 6/1/2007 6:51:06 PM , Rating: 2
You obviously know nothing about Jobs and what he has done to software and computers in general. Maybe you should rent pirates of the silicon valley...

Like it or not, Steve Jobs is a visionary. Dell? Are you serious? What the "#% has Dell done except make just another clone PC? I hardly would compare that to creating the first mass marketed computers, building a wonderful OS or introducing the mouse to the general public...

RE: Haha
By Snuffalufagus on 6/1/2007 10:23:15 PM , Rating: 4
You just pointed out one of the most disturbing problems with many posts made on these boards. They've seen that fr@ckin movie and take it for being historically accurate. It may not be totaly inaccurate, but it was a movie, it was exagerated and not technically 100% accurate, it is a very poor place to learn history.

RE: Haha
By Hare on 6/2/2007 4:10:35 AM , Rating: 2
I think it gives a pretty good overall picture. Yes it's a movie and not 100% correct but without going into small details it's quite an accurate description of the devices and technology Apple developed and implemented.

I wasn't suggesting that watching this movie would be better than reading couple of good books. It's better than nothing.

RE: Haha
By michael2k on 6/1/2007 8:51:33 PM , Rating: 2
Uh, wrong?
1) Apple (with Jobs of course) brought us the mouse and UI as we know it in the Mac; Dell only brought us cheaper computers. Microsoft didn't release their UI until after Apple did, and of course it's true Apple got their inspiration from Xerox.
2) Microsoft owned $150m Apple stock in 1997. They sold it in 2000... you're seven years out of date.
3) They've been working together since 1985 when Microsoft released Word for Mac... several years before Word for Windows was released.

Gates and Jobs are pivotal figures... the mouse, TrueType fonts, windows, folders, hard drives... all the things you take for granted, Apple did first in their Lisa, in 1983, and then the Mac in 1984.

RE: Haha
By MobileZone on 6/3/2007 1:07:00 PM , Rating: 2
You might know that Apple didn't invent the mouse or GUI. Both things were available (not in so popular way) before the Lisa, Apple IIgs and Mac.

RE: Haha
By RjBass on 6/3/2007 11:11:41 PM , Rating: 2
They were available, but not so readily found.

While Apple didn't invent the mouse, it did bring it to the main stream.

By WiLDcAt on 6/1/2007 1:34:47 PM , Rating: 2
I hope this is a sign of good thingd to come

RE: Finally
By WiLDcAt on 6/1/2007 1:36:20 PM , Rating: 3
I ment "things"

RE: Finally
By Spivonious on 6/1/2007 1:51:10 PM , Rating: 5
And you meant "meant"?

By maroon1 on 6/1/2007 5:34:50 PM , Rating: 5
By webdawg77 on 6/1/2007 12:46:12 PM , Rating: 3
LOL. Great retouched picture! Brilliant!

By Mitch101 on 6/1/2007 2:26:58 PM , Rating: 1
I'm not sure either of the majority of their assets are in Microsoft and Apple any more. Gates and Jobs are so far into other ventures that Microsoft and Apple are probably more hobbies than their life long goals. Knowing Bill is a serious poker player for him this is most probably a game.

Did anyone feel it was a tiny bit anti Linux? In a other words I kind of felt that they were trying to say there is only Apple and Microsoft and that if your thinking Linux you should just think Apple instead. After all I think Bill makes more on an Apple machine than a Linux box because chances are you will buy a copy of Microsoft Office for Apple. In choosing that route both Apple and Microsoft win. So even with Gates promoting Apple he still comes out on top.

Either way its nice to see them get along like this. Maybe Apple and Microsoft people can find similar ground.

And as I heard someone say you know the difference between a billionaire and a multi billionaire? Nothing its not like you can get a better steak being a multi billionaire.

What's next Hector and Paul singing the barney song? I love you, you love me.

RE: Billionaire.
By TomZ on 6/1/2007 3:44:13 PM , Rating: 2
AFAIK, both Jobs and Gates are involved in their respective businesses on a daily basis. In Gates' case, he's delegated some of the day-to-day to Ballmer, but he's still there quite a bit. I don't think that Jobs has stepped back, at least I have't read anywhere that he did.

Both are great
By Future145 on 6/2/2007 5:25:56 AM , Rating: 2
lol its great to see steve and bill on the same stage complementing each other. without each other the software industies wouldn't be where it is right now. competition makes companies innovate and try to up each other.
Mac vs PC is just BS, each has its strong and weak sides but both are great in their own way. Windows and Mac FTW!!!!

By microchip on 6/2/2007 10:32:22 AM , Rating: 2
The reason why Bill Gates and Steve Jobs share stage at D conference is because they want more market share. The software giant is trying to find a way to put in the newest Apple C2D windows. On the other hand we have Apple who wants PC market share probably. Imagine the latest Apples working dual boot with OS X and Windows Vista at the same computer.

By Runiteshark on 6/3/2007 12:23:15 AM , Rating: 2
I find it funny that he still uses his hands like the rest of the idiots in the annoying commercials.

Ruddy hell...
By PrinceGaz on 6/4/2007 9:46:08 AM , Rating: 2
Did anyone else think of the regular 'Computer Billionaires' sketch on the BBC's 'Ruddy Hell! It's Harry and Paul'?

"If you mod me down, I will become more insightful than you can possibly imagine." -- Slashdot
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