Print 36 comment(s) - last by Skywalker123.. on May 15 at 7:59 PM

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

Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

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.

"If you can find a PS3 anywhere in North America that's been on shelves for more than five minutes, I'll give you 1,200 bucks for it." -- SCEA President Jack Tretton

Copyright 2015 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki