Journal: News & Comment

Friday, January 18, 2002
# 8:53:00 AM:

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Success isn't winning, or winning isn't success

Bill Gates of Microsoft and Steve Jobs of Apple Computer are probably the two most famous personalities in the computer industry (Larry Ellison of Oracle, much to his chagrin I'm sure, might be third). Despite their prominent positions and shared history, Gates and Jobs are apparently very different men. Both are powerful, rich, and smart. However, despite Microsoft's (deserved) reputation as an Evil Empire, Gates is the nicer of the two moguls.

PBS commentator Robert X. Cringely (a pseudonym) has an excellent analysis of the differences between Gates and Jobs in his latest article. He sums it up this way:

We have to understand the difference between winning in Gatespeak and Jobspeak. When Gates speaks about winning he means WINNING, the whole enchilada, mastery of the universe [but] in Steve Jobs' mind, he has already won [...] Apple's future as a boutique computer company is secure. He dominates Apple completely. When he doesn't feel like being a high tech mogul, he can be a movie mogul, something Gates will never be. In Steve's mind, he has the best of everything. Apple software is cooler than Windows will ever be. Palo Alto, where Jobs lives, is trendier than Seattle. Even Jobs' plane, a Gulfstream V, is cooler than Gates' Challenger 604. It goes on and on.

I sure like my Macs, but I doubt I'd want Steve Jobs as my boss.


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