Rather than merely innovating or dreaming, Gates took a disciplined approach toward software as a potential source of business opportunities.
He and his partner Paul Allen wrote the first version of Microsoft BASIC just to get in on the ground floor with a pioneer maker of home-built computer kits. Gates quit Harvard and moved to New Mexico to work with the company, named MITS, hoping to make Microsoft BASIC an industry standard. A few years later, Gates and Allen made similar moves to get close to Digital Research, then the leading maker of the most popular PC operating system. They even marketed a translator that allowed Digital Research software to work on Apple computers, as a strategic move to ride on Digital Research’s coattails.
Microsoft’s ties to Digital Research led directly to its big opportunity, with IBM. When IBM couldn’t get Digital Research to provide an operating system for IBM’s new PC project, Gates was there to volunteer for the job. It didn’t matter that Microsoft had no expertise in operating systems.
Strategic positioning, as well as a little luck–not some “big idea”–gave Gates the opportunity to make billions with MS-DOS for IBM.
Strategic positioning, as well as a little luck–not some "big idea"–gave Gates the opportunity to make billions with MS-DOS for IBM
See on www.inc.com