The Bill Gates Wealth Index
Here’s a site that answers the burning question: “How much money is it worth Bill Gates’ time to pick up?” (The following was originally written in 1998.)
Consider that [Gates] made this money in the 25 years or so since Microsoft was founded in 1975. If you assume that he has worked 14 hours a day on every business day of the year since then, that means he’s been making money at a staggering million dollars per hour, around $300 per second.
Which means that if, on his way into the office, should he see or drop a $1000 bill on the ground, it’s just not worth his time to bend over and pick it up. He would make more just heading off to work.
We’re assuming about 4 seconds to bend down and pocket the bill. Of course he can afford to hire people to follow him and pick up any $1000 bills he may drop. Not that he would, fortunately he doesn’t quite think of his wealth or time this way. The rumours that when the $50,000,000 invoice for his new manor on Lake Washington came in, he simply said, “Melinda, could you get my wallet. I think it’s in my other pants” are not true. It is ironic that a lot of that house is going to be underground; rooms built with Windows won’t have any.
On a similar note, there’s the Bill Gates perosnal wealth clock, which shows the man has just over $58 billion. That’s nearly $200 for every man, woman, and child in the United States. This same site features a guide explaining how to become as rich as Bill Gates.
- Choose your grandparents carefully.
- Choose your parents carefully.
- Acquire research results by hiring and buying.
- Let other people do the programming.
- Train your new CEO.
- Focus on profit.
- Let the venture capitalists schmooze Wall Street.
- Self-esteem is not Job 1.
Me? I think I’ll continue to get rich slowly…
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