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View Diary: A partial response to Bill Gates' op ed about teachers (247 comments)

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  •  Wiki's take: (6+ / 0-)

    Link:

    In 1980, IBM approached Microsoft to write the BASIC interpreter for its upcoming personal computer, the IBM PC. When IBM's representatives mentioned that they needed an operating system, Gates referred them to Digital Research (DRI), makers of the widely used CP/M operating system.[30] IBM's discussions with Digital Research went poorly, and they did not reach a licensing agreement. IBM representative Jack Sams mentioned the licensing difficulties during a subsequent meeting with Gates and told him to get an acceptable operating system. A few weeks later Gates proposed using 86-DOS (QDOS), an operating system similar to CP/M that Tim Paterson of Seattle Computer Products (SCP) had made for hardware similar to the PC. Microsoft made a deal with SCP to become the exclusive licensing agent, and later the full owner, of 86-DOS. After adapting the operating system for the PC, Microsoft delivered it to IBM as PC-DOS in exchange for a one-time fee of $50,000. Gates did not offer to transfer the copyright on the operating system, because he believed that other hardware vendors would clone IBM's system.[31] They did, and the sales of MS-DOS made Microsoft a major player in the industry.[32]

    Ol' Bill sure milked that cow! ;-)

    This ain't no party. This ain't no disco. This ain't no foolin' around!

    by Snud on Mon Feb 28, 2011 at 05:54:49 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  And QDOS was a copy of CP/M (0+ / 0-)

      ported from the 8080 8-bit architecture to the 8086/8 16 bit architecture. It used the same Program Segment Prefix (PSP) that CP/M copied from DEC operating systems, and MS-DOS used a lot of the same interrupt handler structure as CP/M originally.

      There's a quote from Gary Killdall (DRI), who wrote CP/M originally for Intel, where Killdall asks Gates to explain why a certain interrupt handler returns a '$' character (which both CP/M and MS-DOS versions did). It appears to serve no function, but Killdall said he knew why it returned a '$' - and nobody at MS could, because Killdall wrote the code they copied nearly verbatim.

      We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard. - John F Kennedy

      by badger on Mon Feb 28, 2011 at 11:34:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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