學英文認識微軟起源 -比爾蓋茲

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Bill Gates 科技界的巨人:比爾蓋茲

你知道科技界的大亨比爾蓋茲為什麼在哈佛大學讀了一年半就休學嗎?他又是如何打造出今日的微軟王國呢?以下請看這位傳奇人物的介紹。

While in the eighth grade, Gates wrote his first computer program, a tic-tac-toe game in BASIC that allowed users to match wits with an early General Electric model. A few years later, Gates launched his first business venture, Traf-O-Data, with fellow Lakeside student Paul Allen. Their creation, which analyzed data from roadway traffic counters, earned around twenty thousand dollars for the young software designers. After graduation, Gates attended Harvard University, where his parents hoped he would begin preparing for a career in law. But the allure of the computer lab proved too strong. He spent more time there than he did in class, and in 1975 dropped out after only a year and a half. Swapping academia for business, Gates joined Allen in New Mexico, where he was working at the time, and soon after the pair founded Microsoft.

Microsoft moved to its present home in Bellevue, Washington in January 1979, and true to its name, the company started developing software for microcomputers, or today’s PCs. In the early days, Gates not only took responsibility for overseeing company operations, but was also involved in writing software code. In partnership with IBM, Gates led the development of MS-DOS (Microsoft Disk Operating System), which propelled the company to the forefront of the industry in the early ’80s. Then, in 1985, Microsoft released the first 8)retail version of the popular Windows operating system, forever changing how people interact with their computers.

八年級時,蓋茲用 BASIC 寫出他第一道電腦程式:讓使用者與早期奇異電腦鬥智的井字遊戲。幾年後,蓋茲和他湖畔中學的同學保羅艾倫首度創業:Traf-OData公司。他們的作品可以分析道路交通量計數器收集來的數據,替這兩位小小年紀的軟體設計師賺進約兩萬美元。畢業後,蓋茲赴哈佛大學就讀,他的雙親希望他能開始準備走法律的路。但結果電腦中心的誘惑實在太強烈,他花在那裡的時間比在課堂還多,一九七五年,他在哈佛讀了一年半後就退學了。從學術轉往商場,蓋茲赴新墨西哥州找在這裡工作的艾倫,不久兩人便成立微軟。

微軟於一九七九年一月遷至華盛頓州貝爾維的現址,而且一如其名,該公司開始為微型電腦(也就是今天的個人電腦)研發軟體。草創初期,蓋茲不僅負責監管公司營運,也實際參與軟體程式碼的撰寫。與 IBM 合作,蓋茲帶頭開發出 MSDOS(微軟磁碟作業系統),在八○年代初期將公司推到軟體業龍頭地位。接著,一九八五年,微軟推出廣受歡迎視窗作業系統的第一零售版,永遠改變人們與電腦的互動方式。

【實用字彙】
venture (n.) 新創事業,投資事業
analyze (v.) 分析
partnership (n.) 合夥關係,合作
interact (v.) 互動,互相影響

 

本文取材自《歷史名人堂Hall of Fame:EZ TALK總編嚴選特刊

(本文授權刊登自EZTALK編輯部)

圖片來源:pixabay

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