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From kid geek to the world's next great philanthropist?
1976: The first Microsoft office located at One Park Central Tower in Albuquerque. The trade name "Microsoft" is registered with the Office of the Secretary of the US State of New Mexico.
1978: The original Microsoft (motley) crew. From top, left: Steve Wood, Bob Wallace & Jim Lane Middle row: Bob O'Rear, Bob Greenburg, Marc McDonald & Gordon Letwin Bottom row: Bill Gates, Andrea Lewis, Marla Wood and Paul Allen. Microsoft's year- end sales figures top $1 million for the first time.
1975: The Microsoft founders mug for the camera. It was Year One for Microsoft and revenue was $16,005.
1968: Bill Gates and Paul Allen, who together would go on to create Microsoft, hack around at the Lakeside School, a private school in Seattle. Gates scored 1590 out of 1600 on his SATs before heading to Harvard in 1973.
Epilogue: You know you're famous when you have your own bobble head and Simpsons character.Gates who has been spending 80 per cent of his time on Microsoft matters and 20 per cent on his Foundation work will flop those numbers on July 1, 2008.
1984: Gates appears in the original Macintosh brochure standing alongside Mitch Kapor, center, of Lotus and Fred Gibbons of Software Publishing. This is the year Microsoft takes a leading role in developing software for the Macintosh.
Bill Gates co-founded Microsoft in 1975 and is retiring July, 2008
1983: Gates goes rock star with a layout in Teen Beat Magazine.
1984: Gates, left, seven years after he should have graduated from Harvard, and, right, getting an honorary law degree from the school in 2007. Windows was released the next year (1985).
2007: Gates working in his new role and with wife, Melinda, through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which they started in 2000. When Gates transitions into a heavier workload at the Foundation, its asset trust endowment will stand at $37.3 billion making it the largest charitable foundation in the world.
2006: The transfer of power. Gates, left, and CEO Steve Ballmer, right, pose with Ray Ozzie, now chief software architect, and Craig Mundie, now chief research and strategy officer, after Gates announced he will retire in June 2008 and named Ozzie and Mundie his successors.
2005: Gates received honorary knighthood from Queen Elizabeth.
1977: Busted. Gates gets mugged after being arrested for a traffic violation (he was not carrying his drivers license) in Albuquerque. Gates later admits he was driving Paul Allen's car.
1998: Gates gives a deposition in the anti-trust case United States vs. Microsoft. Gates is ranked No. 1 in Time magazine's "Top 50 Cyber Elite".
2005: Gates speaks at his annual CEO Summit. In November, Microsoft released its Xbox 360 platform in North America.
2008: Rock star again. Twenty-five years after the Teen Beat layout, Gates jams with Guns N' Roses guitarist Slash on his Guitar Hero instrument during his final CES keynote.As part of the keynote Gates showed a video of his final day at Microsoft, which included his first ever public utterance of the phrase, "big pimpin" as he worked with rapper Jay Z.
1995: Windows 95 is first version of the Windows OS with a GUI interface.
2006: The start of a new career.