Skip to main content

WindowToWallStreet®

Excuse our construction site. We had only 120 hours to rebuild after Microsoft 365 tsunami devastation. There's a lot of editorial clean-up to do. Our to-do-list is overflowing. Come visit us again. Copyright © 2005-2014, The Wright Solution ®

Home
Ridge Tahoe Resort
Cypress Pointe Resort
Contact Us
Financial News
Stocks and Sectors
Financial Education
Financial Training
Economics
World Financial Crisis
CATO Institute
Heritage Foundation
Financial Tools
Amazing People
Lee Iacocca
Achievement Academy
John DeLorean
Richard Branson
Paul Newman
Steve Jobs
Nikola Tesla PBS
Nikola Tesla
Industrial Revolution
Microsoft Revolution
Young Entrepreneurs
Young Americans
Young Asian
Amazing Kids 1
Amazing Kids 2
Walt Disney
Inspiration Voices
Computer People
Apple & Jobs History
Technology Trends
PBS On Demand
My Memorabilia
About Us
Controversial Topics
Site Map
Member Login
High School Buddies Bill Gates & Paul Allencreate software for the Altair 8800

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

The Legend of Micro-Kid was the name of Microsoft's first ad campaign (refering to Bill Gates).
While Hobbyists around the USA were trying to figure out how to piece together systems from parts found in electronics shops, MITS (Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems) of Albuquerque, New Mexico, announced the MITS Altair 8800 on the cover of the 1st January 1975 issue of Popular Electronics.

"This is it!" says Paul Allen, waving a copy of Popular Electronics in his hand. "it's about to begin!" On the cover is a mockup of the MITS Altair, the first personal computer.

The MITS Altair inspired a new generation of technology enthusiasts, including Bill Gates and Paul Allen, who were among the first of these early hobbyists to realize that the key to the future of personal computing lay in the unlimited potential of software.

Allen, employed by Honeywell and his friend Bill Gates, a sophomore at Harvard, immediately set out to adapt BASIC for the machine, working in marathon 24-hour sessions.

Using the Altair's published specifications, Gates and Allen created a simulator on a DEC PDP-10 computer that allowed it to emulate the MITS machine. Working day and night, they created the first version of MICROSOFT BASIC for the Altair

Jan 2, Bill Gates and Paul Allen complete BASIC

Allen is going to deliver it to MITS president Ed Roberts in Albuquerque. Realizing he didn't have a way to load it into the computer, Paul Allen hand assembled a loader program for BASIC at 30,000 feet in the air, on the flight to New Mexico. Even though it had never been tested on an actual machine, it ran perfectly on the very first try.

 

They license BASIC to their first customer, MITS of Albuquerque, New Mexico, the manufacturer of the Altair 8800 personal computer. This is the first computer language program written for a personal computer.

 


 

The Year Was 1975 : Microsoft Has Revenues: $16,005. Employees: 3 (Allen, Gates, and Ric Weiland)

Hobbyists became entrepreneurs - some more successfully than others. Personal computers proliferated, with no standards and no preconceived notions of what these new machines could be or could do. It was an adventure shared by a virtual handful of enthusiasts...

World's First Minicomputer to Rival Commercial Models

While Hobbyists around the USA were trying to figure out how to piece together systems from parts found in electronics shops, MITS (Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems) of Albuquerque, New Mexico, announced the MITS Altair 8800 on the cover of the 1st January 1975 issue of Popular Electronics.

The MITS Altair inspired a new generation of technology enthusiasts, including Bill Gates and Paul Allen, who were among the first of these early hobbyists to realize that the key to the future of personal computing lay in the unlimited potential of software.

"This is it!" says Paul Allen, waving a copy of Popular Electronics in his hand. "it's about to begin!" On the cover is a mockup of the MITS Altair, the first personal computer.

Jan 3, Paul Allen joins MITS (Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems) as Director of Software. , and Gates follows him later that year to form an informal partnership called Micro-soft, complete with hyphen.

March 7, The MITS Altair newsletter, Computer Notes, declares, "Altair BASIC -- Up and Running."

July 1, Bill Gates' and Paul Allen's BASIC officially ships as version 2.0 in both 4K and 8K editions.

 

July 22, Paul Allen and Bill Gates sign a licensing agreement with MITS regarding the BASIC Interpreter. Microsoft is not yet an official partnership. In fact, the name has not even been chosen.

Nov 29, In a letter to Paul Allen, Bill Gates uses the name "Micro-soft" to refer to their (60/40) Partnership. This is the earliest known written reference.

Homebrew Computer Club meets for the first time (in Gordon French's garage) in Menlo Park, California.

The Year Was 1976: Microsoft Stats

Revenues: $22,496, Employees: 7

The Computer Mart opens on Madison Avenue in New York. Zilog Z-80 chip is introduced.

Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak announce the Apple I personal computer, for only $666.66! (2) A price high but affordable for someone really wanting to buy his own computer.

Shugart introduces the 5.25-inch floppy disk drive at $390. Three computer magazines arrive: BYTE, Computer Graphics & Art, and Dr. Dobb's Journal of Computer Calisthenics and Orthodontia.

 

April Fools!
Apple Computer is formed with the introduction of the Apple I on April Fool's day 1976. Out of the garage and into the history books, Steve Jobs and Stephen Wozniak build the first single circuit board PC complete with video interface and 8K of RAM and a keyboard. The system incorporated some cost saving components including the MOS Technologies 6502 processor and dynamic RAM. Various potential investors were shown the prototype Apple I which was mounted on a piece of plywood with all components visible. A computer hobbyist group; the Homebrew Computer Club based in Palo Alto, California previewed one of the prototypes and its innovative features. A local computer dealer owner who agreed to sell the units required that they were assembled which was not the norm for customers buying computers at the time. Once displayed in his store, almost all the Apple I systems sold in the next ten months. 200 Apple I systems were built before the introduction of the Apple II. Jobs and Wozniak continued building systems out of their garage for two years before the move to the current Apple headquarters in Cupertino, California.

March 27, Twenty-year old Bill Gates gives the opening address at the First Annual World Altair Computer Convention (WACC) held in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

July 1, Microsoft refines and enhances BASIC to sell to other customers including DTC, General Electric, NCR, and Citibank.

November 1, Paul Allen resigns from MITS to join Microsoft full time.

November 26, The tradename "Microsoft" is registered with the Office of the Secretary of the State of New Mexico "to identify computer programs for use in automatic data processing systems; pre-programming processing systems; and data processing services including computer programming services." The application says that the name has been in continuous use since November 12, 1975.

Microsoft develops its first ad campaign, called "The Legend of Micro-Kid."

 

Although still an informal partnership, Microsoft moves to its first real offices in One Park Central Tower in Albuquerque. Gates returns to Harvard for the spring term, but finds time to direct Microsoft in its efforts to license BASIC to General Electric, NCR, Citibank, and others.

February 3, Bill Gates is one of the first programmers to raise the issue of software piracy. In his "An Open Letter to Hobbyists," first published in MITS newsletter "Computer Notes" and later in several other newsletters and magazines), Gates accuses hobbyists of stealing software and thus preventing "...good software from being written." "If you are STILL using Altair BASIC 1.1, you have a copy that was stolen in March 1975!"
He prophetically concludes with the line, "...Nothing would please me more than being able to hire ten programmers and deluge the hobby market with good software."

MITS sponsors the World Altair Computer Convention (WACC) in Albuquerque, for Altair owners, dealers, programmers, and anyone interested in microcomputers. The convention features a 20-year-old as the keynote speaker: Bill Gates.

Microsoft develops its first ad campaign, called "The Legend of Micro-Kid."

 


 

Bill Gates came from a family of entrepreneurship and high-spirited liveliness. William Henry Gates III was born in Seattle, Washington on October 28th, 1955. His father, William H. Gates II, is a Seattle attorney. His late mother, Mary Gates, was a schoolteacher, University of Washington regent, and chairwoman of United Way International.

Bill Gates - Early Life

He had an early interest in softwareand began programming computers at the age of thirteen. In 1973, Bill Gates became a student at Harvard University, where he meet Steve Ballmer (now Microsoft's chief executive officer). While still a Harvard undergraduate, Bill Gates wrote a version of the programming languageBASICfor the MITSAltair microcomputer.

Did you know that as young teenagers Bill Gates and Paul Allen ran a small company called Traf-O-Data and sold a computer to the city of Seattle that could count city traffic?

Bill Gates & Microsoft

In 1975, before graduation Gates left Harvard to form Microsoft with his childhood friend Paul Allen. The pair planned to develop software for the newly emerging personal computer market.

Bill Gate's company Microsoft became famous for their computer operating systems and killer business deals. For example, Bill Gates talkedIBMinto letting Microsoft retain the licensing rights to MS-DOS an operating system, that IBM needed for their newpersonal computer. Gates proceeded to make afortune from the licensing of MS-DOS.

 

On January 1, 1994, Bill Gates married Melinda French Gates. They have three children.

 

On November 10, 1983, at the Plaza Hotel in New York City, Microsoft Corporation formally announced Microsoft Windows, a next-generation operating system.

 

Bill Gates Philanthropist

Bill Gates and his wife, Melinda, have endowed the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with more than $28.8 billion (as of January 2005) to support philanthropic initiatives in the areas of global health and learning.

MS DOS The Operating System History

From a Quick and Dirty Operating System a giant walks (ms-dos), in 1980, IBM first approached Bill Gates and Microsoft, to discuss the state of home computers and Microsoft products.

Windows 1.0 To Windows Beyond 2000

Windows is the graphical user interface for IBM and IBM compatible machines, this article discusses the origins of Windows and where Windows is heading.

Top Books on Bill Gates

Authorized and unauthorized books on Bill Gates, Microsoft Chairman and the youngest self-made billionaire in history.

 


The Basics of Basic

Dr. John G. Kemeny and Thomas Kurtz developed theBASIClanguage at Dartmouth in 1964. BASIC stood for "Beginner's All-Purpose Symbolic Instruction Code". Their objective: to create a simplified computer language for teaching students how to program. Gates and Allen recognized that the compact design of BASIC made it ideal for the limitations of the first personal computers, which had extremely restricted memory and processing power.

 


Inventors of the Modern Computer

The History of the MS-DOS Operating Systems, Microsoft, Tim Paterson, and Gary Kildall

 

By Mary Bellis

"I don't think it's that significant." - Tandy president John Roach on IBM's entry into the microcomputer field

 

On August 12, 1981, IBM introduced its new revolution in a box, the "Personal Computer" complete with a brand new operating system from Microsoft and a 16-bit computer operating system called MS-DOS 1.0.

Operating System : /n./ [techspeak] (Often abbreviated `OS') The foundation software of a machine, of course; that which schedules tasks, allocates storage, and presents a default interface to the user between applications. The facilities an operating system provides and its general design philosophy exert an extremely strong influence on programming style and on the technical cultures that grow up around its host machines. - The Jargon Dictionary*

In 1980, IBM first approached Bill Gates and Microsoft, to discuss the state of home computers and Microsoft products. Gates gave IBM a few ideas on what would make a great home computer, among them to have Basic written into the ROM chip. Microsoft had already produced several versions of Basic for different computer system beginning with the Altair, so Gates was more than happy to write a version for IBM.

As for an operating system (OS) for the new computers, since Microsoft had never written an operating system before, Gates had suggested that IBM investigate an OS called CP/M (Control Program for Microcomputers), written by Gary Kildall of Digital Research. Kindall had his Ph.D. in computers and had written the most successful operating system of the time, selling over 600,000 copies of CP/M, his OS set the standard at that time.

IBM tried to contact Kildall for a meeting, executives met with Mrs. Kildall who refused to sign a non-disclosure agreement. IBM soon returned to Bill Gates and gave Microsoft the contract to write the new operating system, one that would eventually wipe Kildall's CP/M out of common use.

The "Microsoft Disk Operating System" or MS-DOS was based on QDOS, the "Quick and Dirty Operating System" written by Tim Paterson of Seattle Computer Products, for their prototype Intel 8086 based computer.

QDOS was based on Gary Kildall's CP/M, Paterson had bought a CP/M manual and used it as the basis to write his operating system in six weeks, QDOS was different enough from CP/M to be considered legal.

Microsoft bought the rights to QDOS for $50,000, keeping the IBM deal a secret from Seattle Computer Products. Gates then talked IBM into letting Microsoft retain the rights, to market MS DOS separate from the IBM PC project, Gates proceeded to make a fortune from the licensing of MS-DOS.

 

In 1981, Tim Paterson quit Seattle Computer Products and found employment at Microsoft.

 

"Life begins with a disk drive." - Tim Paterson

 


Paul Gardner Allen (born January 21, 1953) is an American entrepreneur and philanthropist who co-founded Microsoft with Bill Gates and is one of the wealthiest people in the world. Paul has been out of the Microsoft limelight for over a decade. Unlike his relatively frugal MS co-founder Bill Gates, Paul is a big spender. He's purchased two of the worlds newest and largest private Yachts in the World ( Tattosh foe $100 million in 2001 and Octopus for $200 million in 2003). Just for fun you can see Pauls two little Yacht toys in the video to the right. Paul was recently out done by the oil wealth in Dubai, where the head of state purchased the worlds largest Yacht.

He is the founder and chairman of Vulcan Inc., which is his private asset management company, and is chairman of Charter Communications. Allen also has a multi-billion dollar investment portfolio which includes stakes in Digeo, Kiha Software, real estate holdings, and more than 40 other technology, media, and content companies. Paul did loss a small fortune on the colapse of Charter Communications stock during the tech and telecom bust of 2000-2002.

Allen also owns three professional sports teams: the Seattle Seahawks of the National Football League, the Portland Trail Blazers of the National Basketball Association, and the Seattle Sounders FC franchise in Major League Soccer that began playing in the 2009 season.