New Role for Bill in July 2008

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Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer had an important announcement to make today and we were lucky enough to catch up with them for a brief chat about the big news this morning.

Postscript:  Check out the coverage on TechMeme.



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    The Discussion

    • Rossj
      erik_ wrote:
      Can't watch the stream

      Is the download comming soon?

      Works fine here, and I'm on a Mac.
    • Charles

      Yes, download coming soon...

    • Rossj
      littleguru wrote:
      Microsoft loosing another face

      But it'll be great to have Ray Ozzie as CSA - he *knows* about collaboration.  I can't wait for his C9 debut Smiley
    • ElucidWeb
      littleguru wrote:
      Microsoft loosing another face and the guy with the original vision.

      First off its "losing" second off they aren't losing him, he is simply engaging in other efforts full time and doing the Microsoft thing part time.  Always amazes me that he is so cordial and relaxed being the worlds richest man and all.  That would go to a lot of peoples heads and its just fascinating!

      Sorry about the spelling correction but I like to point out the obvious ones since grammar seems to be a deteriorating thing these days.
    • trackerball

      For the richest man in the world to give up a very influential position and concentrate on some of the basic aspects of humanity like education and health care is phenomenal. Bill will no doubt be a very influential figure in the world of charity, and I personally feel that with this announcement, humankind has actually gained a lot more that what Microsoft may have lost. 

    • littleguru
      Microsoft losing another face Sad and the guy with the original vision.
    • mawcc
      I think it's right for Bill to put more energy into his foundation. He's a good guy, very intelligent and willing to make a change using his wealth. What better could happen to the world (especially those parts of it that are desparately in need of some help).
    • littleguru
      ElucidWeb wrote:
      Sorry about the spelling correction but I like to point out the obvious ones since grammar seems to be a deteriorating thing these days.

      This time it was a typo... sorry.
    • littleguru
      I got a strange feeling when watching the video. Why is Bill not looking at Steve. Why is his back looking at Steve. He is looking away from Steve.

      Did they have some fights and it turned out that Bill "quits"... Strange, strange, strange...

      Bill looks down. He seems not to like this move.
    • dentaku
      Steve seems more like a stereotypical american football coach than a geek Perplexed
    • rjdohnert
      I think Bill will have a hard time giving it up.  This is some real bummer news but Im sure he wouldnt have even made the announcement if he didnt feel that he had top-notch, quality people working for him.  Oh and Charles, i was kind of expecting you to the the new CSA Wink
    • erik_

      Great that they brought this quickly to channel9.

      Steve still got enough energy Smiley

      Good luck, Bill. Thanks for changing the world and keep the change going.

    • Mr. Smith
      dentaku wrote:
      Steve seems more like a stereotypical american football coach than a geek

      That's why some of us love him so Smiley  Bill is great and all, but doesn't really get you fired up as much as Steve chanting 'Developers' can.
    • alwaysmc2

      *gasp* Did anyone notice the fade in/out transitions at the beginning and end of the clip?  What is Channel 9 comming to?! Tongue Out

    • Manip
      I love Bill's sub concious no <shakes head> when he talks about getting Ray Ozy(?) on Channel 9... Good video... Nice work 9 team Smiley
    • jvervoorn
      I've heard Bill talk about his Foundation before, it's good he can be more involved with something he is so excited about.

      The light in this video was terible, it made Steve Balmer look like a Skull. I know the lighting on my avatar isn't great either, so I beat you to the comments.
    • dentaku
      Mr. Smith wrote:
      dentaku wrote: Steve seems more like a stereotypical american football coach than a geek

      That's why some of us love him so   Bill is great and all, but doesn't really get you fired up as much as Steve chanting 'Developers' can.

      I don't think I've ever seen Bill get excited about anything. I also wish someone would tell him to stop wearing pleated pants Wink

      Steve has gotten this far because he's so different, in fact he's just plain old weird (not that's it a bad thing).
    • fdezjose
      He should build a Channel 9 of his foundation. Wink
    • Fonze
      Steve Ballmer: Ray Ozzie, Ray Ozzie, Ray Ozzie !
    • BlackTiger
      They both looks so... old... Perplexed

    • djbones
      Obviously Bill is just following Scoble's lead, gettin' out while the gettin's good. Wink
    • staceyw
      I love that... Steve's done talking, so he stands up and walks out while the camera is rolling.  That was perfect Smiley  I showed my wife the video and she said "The world needs Bill more then Microsoft".  After a thinking about that for a few seconds, she is right.  Thanks Bill!  Looking forward to your next 2 years at MS and your foundation work after that.  Cheers.
    • darrenstrai​ght

      Well best of luck to Bill and Melinda I hope they both accomplish many more things for this world.

      I can only hope that the Microsoft stocks don’t go down anymore than they are now, especially as they were up a little after closing just before they announced this transition.

      And as for you Craig Mundie, Ray Ozzie and CEO Steve Ballmer, make sure you do your best, I'm sure you all will though. Smiley

    • paulo
      Bill for President !!! Tongue Out
    • androidi
      Manip wrote:
      I love Bill's sub concious no <shakes head> when he talks about getting Ray Ozy(?) on Channel 9... Good video... Nice work 9 team

      Yeah.. Ray Is mmm A Big Believer Expressionless .... in Channel 9 .. :O ...

      Steve said Ray will be today on Channel 9. Charles will be working over time to accomplish that. Right?

    • Charles
      Ray will not be on Channel 9 today. However, Ray will be on Channel 9.

    • jeffsand
      We're scheduling this as we speak.  As you can imagine today was a really crazy day for all the folks involved in the announcement.  But yes, you'll see this and much more on Channel 9.

      Its going to be a lot of fun in the years ahead for Channel 9.

      Thank you all for visiting and participating, its because of you that we get to do this.

    • Daveed
      It seems to me that Bill has realized his persona now casts too wide of a shadow and prevents him from being as effective as he used to.
      My take is, that he sees in Ozzie the same attributes that Microsoft used to get from him before the he became “BILL GATES"

      I think that with Ozzie and him, as a behind the seen contributor, MSFT will most likely expand into the next big ERA.

      Daveed   Cool
    • intelman
      I'm glad Bill did not decide to leave completely. It is good that he is going to work at the foundation. I hope the foundation funds a lot of cancer research and such. I know they did AIDs, but they probably do cancer too. I hope he changes the world with his work at the foundation.

      Steve seemed so energetic like always in the video...hard to get used to!
    • Chadk

      I think this is both a good, and a bad thing.

      Bill is gonna step down, such a shame as he seems like a great guy.

      This is a GREAT chance for microsoft to get even better, and make changes.

      Who's Ray Ozzie?
      I must say that Steve is filled with energy, the way he said that he would get Ray on channel9, was overwhelming.

    • Shark_M
      Why Is Bill Gates stepping down in July 2008?

      what is the reason for this? Is it too much work? (semi-retirement for Bill?)

    • bkmgeosv
      Microsoft is influencing us in some way, and this time will Bill's planned move influence us in any way as well?
    • fcisco

      It is sad to see Bill go.  I've been in the software business a long time, and I have definitely gone through a few phases in my career ( liking Microsoft and not liking Microsoft ).  Bill Gates has been one of the most thought provoking figures in the industry for the past couple of decades.

      Bill moving on, kind of seems like a sign of the times.  The software industry is maturing.   We are starting to come to terms with the influence that our applications, frameworks, and systems actually have in our world.  We've been busy building them, and having a lot of fun doing it.  Now we're getting older, and realizing what all of these capabilities mean in real terms, and how they can truly be used to make a significant positive impact in the world, and future generations.

      Best of luck, and best wishes, Bill! 

    • Keyvan Nayyeri
      I'm sure this helps Micorosoft to be better but no one can forget the role of Bill in our world.

      Really he changed our world compeletly.
    • die-Sel
      I wish Bill al the luck with his Foundation work, he really does make a difference for 1000s of people over the world.

      Not to mention, I will miss him after 2008. I have always liked Bill and his approach to MS work method. And i know its been werid but he has always had a good reason. I do feel though that he is a bit late at connecting with developers with Windows Live Dev only coming around the coner and the VS Express Versions arent that old neither, but again all the best to him and his work.

      As for Steve, clam down buddy, take a min and think wtf your doing. Wink;)
    • geniusleft
      Tongue Out
      Bill seems as a child.
    • System
      BlackTiger wrote:
      They both looks so... old...

      Ha, cut them some slack. They look pretty good for 50!
    • liridon shala

      Yeap Bill for president ! hmm that's fine why not let him be the president of the states right now world computing will take another way of effecting.

      by Liridon Shala

    • rhm
      Right at the end of the video when Steve gets all shouty about getting Ray Ozzie on Channel 9, I had a moment of deja vu. Then I realised who he reminded me of.....

      Big Smile
    • MrFile

      Open letter to Bill Gates:

      Wow... I heard this news yesterday and it stunned me.

      Bill gates, for better or worse you have been the face of technology for me since i was a little kid (which was not too long ago since im 25) and your company/software has inspirited and empowered me become the software engineer i am today. (C# Rocks)

      To see you leave Microsoft in two years is really odd news, but I really wish you all the best in your future endeavors with the foundation.

      I must agree with other comments though, you do look a bit down in the video and we all hope that this transition while hard is what you really want.

      Good luck!

    • Boomport
      I thought Bill was great when I used his computers at a library in a town of 600 people to access the internet.  I found it hard to believe that someone would donate so much equipment and money then.  Since I have read about all the great things that him and his wife are doing in helping with medicines and such.  Then I think about how I haven't worked for years because they pay me to do what I love and its because of Bills software.  Thanks Bill for helping out me, so I get to come to work and play all day and for helping out so many of humanities family.  
    • j0217995
      First of all I think its great to have both Steve B and Bill G on C9.  Especialy so close to the announcement.  Mr. Gates good luck and thanks for all you have done both at Microsoft and with your foundation.

      I find it funny all over the Linux Blogsphere this morning people are saying stuff like "its great that he's stepping down, now is the chance for Linux to take over.  With BillG gone, will Linux finally have its chance?  Is this the opportunity for Linux to take over.  "  And of course we all love the trolls on /. that are ripping the man to shreds and not focusing on the quality of work his foundation has done.

      Anyways this is not the opportunity for Linux to tkae over, this is also not the year of the Linux desktop.  This is an opportunity for MS to grow and change and to regain its place in the tech world as a lead.  
    • eagle
      Ray gave his first Microsoft Keynote here at TechEd on Sunday
      Ray Ozzie Keynote I agreed with everything he said.

      Ray is going to make a great CSA, he understands the web with all the changes it has brought to our world.

      I met Ray in San Francisco back in November 05, we had a nice chat and a bit of fun when he sent an email to my alter-ego in Dublin.

      Ray's blog 
    • rupeshxyz
      Guys You heard the news.

      The king is living his castle and the ministers are taking it over...... Isn't it sign of downturn of microsoft ?
      when there is screwed competitors like Oracle and google is still agressively pursuing new projects.


      Think about it. And respond to my posting.
    • teenarchie

      Good Luck Bill in your new role Smiley
      You have changed the world with Microsoft and now you are moving to a new dimension in your life.

      Steve ... I love your energy. You are an inspiration for Microsoft !


      Thanks and

    • teenarchie

      Good Luck Bill in your new role Smiley
      You have changed the world with Microsoft and now you are moving to a new dimension in your life.

      Steve ... I love your energy. You are an inspiration for Microsoft !


      Thanks and Regds,


    • teenarchie




      Good Luck Bill in your new role Smiley
      You have changed the world with Microsoft and now you are moving to a new dimension in your life.

      Steve ... I love your energy. You are an inspiration for Microsoft !


      Thanks and Regds,


    • j0217995
      I totally disagree with you... I think its time for Bill to move on and time for him to become just a chairman and nothing more.  I think we are going to see things improve for MS, but it will never return to its glory days of MicroSerfs with the stock ticker running along the bottom of everyone's computer etc...

      I think it still is a good long term investment
    • e_icc
      I got some feeling  . . 
      Funny ... Don't you think?????
    • Steve411
      Good bye, Microsoft; 08' is the year Ballmer screws everything up.

      - Steve
    • Techboy

      you gotta love ballmer. Smiley

    • iStation
      Many Hoorays for new Gates!
      Big Smile

      I saw his father in CNN the other day.
      He is really taking after his father!
    • Orchus

      La Cabeza el Balzana eh?

      Ballmer is just so freaking happy is get rid of Bill. HE IS THE BOSS. He really has a Napoleonic complex. Probably has a small one thats why. I am really frustrated by him. Please evince him someone!

      How can you let a company this size have a CEO that lets its biggest product overdue by that much???   -I don't know, except if your running a monarchy.


    • StevenS
      The likelihood of a fight is remote.

      Bill told Forbes magazine in the early nineties (1994 as I recall) he would not stay at MS beyond 50.  That he announced is not shattering news, nor a surprise.  He is just on schedule.

      As for not looking at SteveB, I would not read anything into that as well. 

      That the stock did not crash is also not a surprise.  The market knows that Bills goal has been achieved; there is a computer in the home and on the desk.  ('A computer on every desk and in every home running Microsoft software')  The market also knows services is not Bills sweet spot, so again his timing and exit are right on point.

      Bill should leave MS.  The time is right.  He has changed the world once, and with the BMG foundation, he has the chance to do it again.  Compare that corporate behaviour to that found in Enron and WorldCom.

      Go Bill go!


    • zhuo

      At least to me you are. You'll never know, with all the medical research at the foundation Bill might just double his wealth while change the world once more through bio-med research. He was always talking about how software and biology advances will change the world so let see if he could do the same with biology as he did with software.

      Have to say though, bill didn't look too happy, Steve is in contrast is beaming like Mr Mc'Donalds. I guess Bill leaving means full control to Steve. Oh btw, did you guys know steve is worth 11billon if i remember correctly on Forbes rich list.

    • jason818_25​3.33

      Bill Gates is a wonderful person, along with so many of those who work at Microsoft.

      Some times I wish there were computer soft ware that could be written to "fix"/change- all World problems. As of yet this has not been done.

      Change to be made on the scale of curing world poverty, hunger, and disease takes people who are able to create infrastructure that executes complex algorithms.

      I am glad for Bill Gates and his decision.


    • Peruris
      All the Best Bill.  You definitely have contributed a lot to the Computer Smiley World through Microsoft. I wish the same to the world through your foundation. Watching the energy and momentum in the new software and betas, Microsoft is definitely a head of the curve and going to make a good impact in the years to come by with more great software and solutions.
      Good luck with your transistion.
    • drew.0
      Before watching this video I had read about this in Information Week and had some doubts as to the direction that this was going. But hearing BillG talk about it and coupling that with seeing some of the core developments in architecture and services that the world is moving to (and how on top of them MS is), I feel that this is a great move for BillG and MS. Congratulations to MS for really stepping up Community Involvement and sticking to the common goal of innovative technology that can adapt to the rapid changes in the hardware industry.  And Congratulations to BillG especially, you have brought about innovation in so many ways and I hope the very best to you in your future endeavours. At this point, The World Does Need BillG More Than Microsoft, and it takes a remarkable man to recognize and accept that.

    • qwert231
      Bill has always been a coder. He was smart in that he got good business people to work with, because that wasn't what he wanted to deal with. If you noticed, he would still try to be in touch with some of the technical things. He's always loved the software and technology.

      As for Ballmer, somebody give that guy a decaf! Smiley
    • saurabh25

      Bill Gates has been my inspiration & a living example of how technology can transform the lives of people around the world.

      While it may make sense for MS/Bill to let others fill his shoes, it truly will be sad to not have him on the helm of affairs.

      The humility with which he comes across simply amazes me...(Maybe Mr. Trump can learn a few things about humility...nah maybe not..).

      The world can definitely use a few good men. I hope their foundation continues to do the good work they are so involved in.

      Good Luck Mr. Gates Sir!!

    • reinux
      I wanna see him go out with a bang... make one last product that we can attribute to him personally, as a monument. Get WinFS back on its feet maybe?

      Sorry, I just had to get that off my head Smiley

      Glad to see I'm not the only Gates fan out there. No doubt, there'll be even more once he hits it big again at his new job.
    • mcannistra

      Just read an interesting column on The Economist:


      The new powers in giving

      "Despite many denials, it is widely believed Mr Buffett made his gift conditional upon Mr Gates giving up his day job at Microsoft."

      I don't think that Mr Buffett made such a condition. Certainly, driving the Bill&Melinda Gates Foundation in doing the best with such a huge amount of money will require a great management effort. I think Mr Gates just wants to direct all his energies in those projects.

      ..and I add my wishes for Mr Gates and its foundation in doing more for other people.

    • SuperOffice
      Thank you for exist Bill!

    • starny

      I think his new role is watching his very young beautiful wife evry minute at the Bill and Melenda Gate Foundation, else he won't get out of his Microsoft office.

      I think he knows about himself better than me.

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