After a short transition period, Gates relinquished day-to-day oversight of Microsoft in June 2008—although he remained chairman of the board—in order to devote more time to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
In February 2014 he stepped down as chairman but continued to serve as a board member.
His supporters, on the other hand, celebrated his uncanny business acumen, his flexibility, and his boundless appetite for finding new ways to make computers and electronics more useful through software.
Windows CE operating system platform for networking noncomputer devices such as home televisions and personal digital assistants, created the Microsoft Network to compete with America Online and other Internet providers, and, through Gates’s company Corbis, acquired the huge Bettmann photo archives and other collections for use in electronic distribution.
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in 1999) in 1994 to fund global health programs as well as projects in the Pacific Northwest.
During the latter part of the 1990s, the couple also funded North American libraries through the Gates Library Foundation (renamed Gates Learning Foundation in 1999) and raised money for minority study grants through the Gates Millennium Scholars program.Gates’s sway over the infant microcomputer industry greatly increased when Microsoft licensed an operating system called IBM PC (personal computer).After the machine’s release in 1981, IBM quickly set the technical standard for the PC industry, and MS-DOS likewise pushed out competing operating systems.They began by adapting BASIC, a popular programming language used on large computers, for use on microcomputers.With the success of this project, Gates left Harvard during his junior year and, with Allen, formed Microsoft.In 1975 Gates, then a sophomore at Harvard University, joined his hometown friend Paul G.Allen to develop software for the first microcomputers.Nevertheless, as Microsoft’s power and reputation grew, and especially as it attracted the attention of the U. Justice Department’s antitrust division, Gates, with some reluctance, became a more public figure.Rivals (particularly in competing companies in Silicon Valley) portrayed him as driven, duplicitous, and determined to profit from virtually every electronic transaction in the world.At the very least, historians seem likely to view him as a business figure as important to computers as John D. The second of three children born to a lawyer and a teacher, Bill Gates attended private school, where he discovered his interest in software.