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A Speech by "Bill Gates"

MR. GATES: Good evening. When someone first told me that I was scheduled to give this speech on Sunday night, I was worried that nobody would come. GATES: But, I guess I've been in the news enough recently to attract a little attention.

(Laughter.)

MR. GATES: Well, the theme of what I want to talk about tonight is how great the PC is to come, and how much greater it's going to be. I was thinking about all the reasons I love my PC, and I had to pick just a few and boil it down. And so I'm going to start with my top ten list of why I love my PC. The number ten reason why I love my PC.

(Applause.)

MR. GATES: Has somebody done this before?

(Laughter.)

MR. GATES: The number 10 reason is, I love using Barney software with my 18-month-old daughter. Now, I constantly find myself humming Barney's song. In fact, I can't even say the word "computer" in my house, because if she hears me say it, she'll just start saying, 'puter, 'puter, 'puter, and she won't do anything until I take her and let her play with that. And that really is a lot of fun.

The number nine reason I love my PC is, every function in my new house is managed by the PC, and sometimes it works.

(Applause.)

MR. GATES: I'm the only one who can get an NT error message when I try and flip on the light switch, so it gives me a lot of motivation to make things simpler. I have the house that deserves to have a little banner on the front saying, "Intel Inside."

(Laughter and applause.)

MR. GATES: The number eight reason I love my PC is, what other machine allows you to plug and play, embrace and extend, and link and embed. We have a lot of interesting terminology in this business. I think every three-letter acronym is being used, and we're well along the way to using up all the four-letter acronyms.

The number seven reason is, with electronic mail, anyone can send me their thoughts with the click of a button, and I get a lot of electronic mail. And it's every helpful to me to know what people are thinking about our products. It's a great way to stay in touch with what's going on. With electronic mail, you just -- immediately when you think something up, you can sit down and rattle off a message. In fact, my colleague Steve Ballmer, he's a great user of electronic mail. He's always coming up with ideas.

In fact, I have a little sample of email from Steve here, where he was so enthused, and his typing is not too good, so here's what it was. I've got the different version where we decoded. The reason we put spell checking into electronic mail, and now grammar checking, is to help Steve out so we can know exactly what he means when he sends us these messages.

Okay, the number six reason, I can program in any language I want. That means the PC is ecumenical. You don't have to get religious about COBOL or Fortran or C or Java, or whatever it is, you can use them all. In fact, people who use the programs don't even have to think about what it's written in. I expect in the years to come, there will be many great new languages. Java is a great language, one we support very well. But that doesn't mean that people have to rewrite or try to fit everything into a single solution.

Number five, and this is a real doozy. In just one weekend, I can sit at my PC, collaborate with attorneys all over the world, comment on a 48-page legal brief, and email it to the Department of Justice.

(Applause.)

MR. GATES: There's a certain irony in using those Internet technologies that are built into Windows to build the case to defend those Internet technologies.

(Laughter and applause.)

MR. GATES: And it worked perfectly.

The number four reason, I can gather information on the Internet, so I make sure never to repeat myself in speeches. I think that's very, very important. In fact, I made a short little video clip that will show how careful I am about this:

(Applause.)

MR. GATES: Okay. Now, for the third best reason, I do my best work using my laptop on the airplane, and I don't have to store a server under the seat in front of me. There's a lot to be said for portable computing.

Number two, the PC empowers everyone in the world to publish their ideas, opinions, and dreams of changing the world. And there are some great examples of that out there on the Web. Let's just go over here and see what we've got. Ah, yes, my favorite Web site, People Against Poodles. Everybody is entitled to their opinion. There's the poor little dog, cute pooch or ambassador of evil. And this is very sophisticated Web site. Why Pooh-pooh must die.

(Laughter.)

MR. GATES: Well, just about every opinion you can imagine is out there somewhere.

And, finally, the number one reason I love my PC, I can use Microsoft PowerPoint to show Ralph Nader my Corvair collection.

(Applause.)

MR. GATES: I haven't done that yet, but I'm sure looking forward to it.

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This page was last changed November 23, 1997


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