Microsoft is the world’s biggest software company, a technology giant, a title it retained for almost 38 years since its inception. The company was founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen on April 4, 1975, to develop and sell BASIC interpreters for microprocessor ‘Altair 8800’, and eventually monopolized the OS market with its MS-DOS and Windows series of operating systems.
Here are some interesting facts about Microsoft :
No. 1 Co-founders of Microsoft, Bill Gates and Paul Allen, showcased their programming skills in high school by cracking into the security system of the Computer Center Corportation. The company soon hired them to help “find bugs and weaknesses” in its system.
No. 2 The company was named as “Micro-Soft” at the time of its founding in 1975, later the co-founders took the ‘hyphen’ off, and incorporated Microsoft Inc. in 1981.
No. 3 The Software engineers at Microsoft, are also referred to as “Softies,” take home a starting salary of $106,000.
No. 4 Microsoft, in its 38 years of amazing history, has acquired over 150 companies: including Hotmail, Skype, Vision Corpoation, and Yammer. Six are worth over one billion.
No. 5 Microsoft’s Surface tablet was created in secrecy at the company’s Studio B location in Redmond, Washington, U.S., which supposedly has an underground bunker where the development team worked on the tablet.
No. 6 You can’t create folders in the name of CON, PRN, AUX, or NUL because these keywords are reserved by DOS.
No. 7 The company’s 1986 initial public offering, and subsequent rise in its share price, created an estimated three billionaires and 12,000 millionaires from Microsoft employees. It took 23 years since going public in 1986 for Microsoft to report its first-ever revenue drop.
No. 8 Microsoft originally named its operating system as “Interface Manager,” but marketing team felt “Windows” worked best.
No. 9 Joachim Kempin, former VP of Windows Sales, said that Microsoft had plans of acquiring SEGA, but the deal fell through because Bill Gates felt the gaming company didn’t have “enough muscle” to compete with Sony.
No. 10 Microsoft was incorporated with only three employees and $16,000 in the bank. By 2008, the company staffed close to 96,000 and racked up $60 billion in revenue.
No. 11 The Microsoft’s Research and Development division employs over 850 PhDs who work in 13 labs around the world and tackle 55 areas of R&D including hardware development, social computing, and algorithmic theories.
No. 12 Microsoft’s Word was originally developed for its own version of the Unix OS called Xenix, which was intended for use on microcomputers.
No. 13 Before Microsoft was founded, the duo, Gates and Allen had another start-up by named Traf-O-Data. The company was formed while the two were in high school with the objective of processing raw data from roadway traffic counters to create reports for engineers.
No. 14 In 1992, WinVer 1.4, the first virus attacked the Windows based systems.
No. 15 Google acquired YouTube for $1.6 billion, Microsoft passed on the opportunity acquire it for half the price: $500 million.
No. 16 The tone when you boot up the PC was composed by Musician Brian Eno and he was offered $35,000 to compose the infamous start-up tune for Windows 95.
No. 17 Windows XP was named as Windows Oxygen, after it was built, however, Microsoft’s marketing team thought it was best to run with the XP moniker with the initials representing “eXPerience.”
No. 18 The current CEO of Microsoft, Steve Ballmer, who at the time was hired as Microsoft’s 30th employee, starred in the first ever Windows 1.0 commercial as an overly ecstatic salesman.
No. 19 The Company’s work force include over 76 percent of male and 23 percent of female employees. The average employee age is 38.4 years.
No. 20 It took 11 years for Microsoft for its first IPO (initial public offering)
No. 21 Apple attempted to sue Microsoft during the release of Windows 2.0 which infringed Apple’s drop-down menus and tilted windows. But the PC giant countersued stating the Apple granted permission to create GUI (graphical user interface) elements based on the Mac OS and other programs.
No. 22 Over 5,000 pieces of contemporary artwork can be found spread across the company’s 150 campuses. According to Microsoft, art helps reduce stress at the workplace and increase productivity.
No. 23 When Gates was still a freshman at Harvard University, in his resume he stated that he’d be available from June 1974 and would be happy working “anywhere” at the suggested salary of $15,000. However he dropped out of college the following year found Microsoft with Paul Allen.
No. 24 Microsoft Word has a number of auto-type sentence commands, but its most popular is “=rand(200,99),” which when entered without the quotes into a document, it gives out put of ‘The Quick Brown Fox Jumps over the Lazy Dog.’ The sentence contains all the 26 alphabets in English language.
No. 25 Windows 95 is most remembered for it is the first operating system when it comes to internet. It had built-in Internet, dial-up networking, and plug and play support.
No. 26 Microsoft Office was first released in 1989 for use on Macintosh before being launched for Windows platform.
No. 27 When you type ‘Q33N’ in Wingdings font, the word page displays ‘Q33N’ image. It is the flight number of the flight that struck one of the two World Trade Centers on 9th September 2001.