For the first time in 20 years Bill Gates (founder of Microsoft and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation) and Steve Jobs (founder of Apple, NEXT, and Pixar) sat down for a joint interview on May 30, 2007 for the Wall Street Journal’s All Things Digital D5 Conference. The interview is hilarious and awe inspiring! Bill and Steve have achieved such outstanding professional success and their companies have affected many of our daily lives more profoundly than any other high technology companies to date. Microsoft and Apple laid the groundwork and helped train individuals who have since created companies of their own that have enabled email, blogging, Internet browsing, mobile devices, and Internet search (don’t tell Google) for the masses. Being an entrepreneur, I can appreciate how much effort, energy, and passion it takes to build even the smallest of businesses and for each of them to make it from Founder/CEO and still be heavily involved with their company’s decades later (even though Jobs had a little break during his career at Apple) is down right jaw dropping!
Bill married Melinda French in 1994 and they have 3 children born in 1996, 1999, and 2002. Steve’s first child was born in 1978. He later married Laurene Powell in 1991 and they have 3 children who were presumably born after 1991. Babble Soft released its first PC/Pocket PC version of Baby Manager in 2005 (just after our second child was born) and we released Baby Manager Web and Mobile in March 2007 so it’s unlikely we will have the chance to say that two of the most famous dads in the technology world used our software when their kids were born. Oh well, maybe some other up and coming dads in the tech world will discover us before their babies are born!
I’d like to think that if the technology behind mobile devices, the Internet, and Babble Soft had existed when the children of these well known dads were born that Bill and Steve would have enjoyed playing around with Baby Manager Web and Mobile. I could just see them and/or their wives giving their nannies a mobile device and showing them how to easily input information with a touch of a screen or click of a button. Later, they or their wives could log in to a web application to see how things were going at home and leave notes to their nannies, spouses, family, and friends. Or they could use their mobile device and sync via cradle or over-the-air to Baby Manager Web and get a real time update on baby. An entrepreneur can dream, can’t she?
Baby Manager was created using Microsoft technologies. The application works with the most commonly used browsers (e.g., Internet Explorer, Safari, and Firefox) and the latest Microsoft OS based PDAs and Smartphones. One of the reasons we created a web application was because expecting parents were emailing us asking when we would have a version that ran on the Mac. In 2005, I was barely holding my head above water with 2 little ones, so we put PR on hold until recently so we could more effectively use our limited resources to reach all the interested, Internet savvy new parents in the world. We do use our Mac to create graphics and design product literature. However, the PCs in our office outnumber the Macs…but if Macs start running Windows then the ratio might change.
The most interesting observation I can make about these two famous dads is that they have very different personalities, followed their own paths, have different strengths & weaknesses, and achieved financial success by being true to their own visions. As someone who also interviews people on the topic of success, this observation further affirms my belief that ‘people should follow their own path to success, not try to mimic someone else’s.’ Every second that passes the world is different, and what has worked for others in the past may not work in the present. There’s a reason we all have different fingerprints!
Happy Father’s Day Bill and Steve! 8)
AruniAuthor: Aruni | Filed under: apple, babble soft, baby manager, bill gates, dad, entrepreneur, father, Father's Day, microsoft, mobile devices, PDA, Smartphone, steve jobs, technology | Comments Off