Stupid Tech Predictions From the Brightest Tech Figures

Stupid Tech Predictions From the Brightest Tech Figures

Jason Yang
Sep 23, 2011

A discussion about quotes / misquotes turned to Steve Jobs, Michael Dell, and other famous tech founders and CEOs. The debate revolved around the age-old "quote" from Bill Gates in regards to the memory limit of PCs at the time: "640K ought to be enough for anybody." Sounds like a major oops, but did he really say it? We looked it up (smartphones killed the bar argument) and surprise, surprise, guess what he and others said or didn't say!

"640K ought to be enough for anybody." - Bill Gates [Microsoft]

Gates has gone on record many times claiming he never actually said this. "I've said some stupid things and some wrong things, but not that. No one involved in computers would ever say that a certain amount of memory is enough for all time" as well as "I keep bumping into that silly quotation attributed to me that says 640K of memory is enough. There's never a citation; the quotation just floats like a rumor, repeated again and again." Evidence is apparently shaky in anyone trying to prove the accuracy of the now legendary statement.

"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." - Michael Dell [Dell]

With Apple's valuation battling it out for the top spot with Exxon, it seems Apple has gotten the final word in.

"No one's going to buy [a big phone]" - Steve Jobs [Apple]

With rumors swirling about regarding the impending iPhone 5 launch, we'll see if Steve's going to have to heat his own words! Turns out he's been lying about lots of other things too, such as denying Apple's involvement in making a tablet and such. But what company hasn't been guilty of masking the truth now and again. We'll let Mr. Jobs slide on this stab at Android. Those mega phones seem to be doing okay anyway.

"There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home." - Ken Olson [Digital Equipment Corporation]

Mr. Olsen claims that his statement was taken out of context. Apparently he wasn't talking about the desktop PC, but rather central computers to control our homes - lights, temperature, etc. Guess he rephrased his quote before home automation caught on.

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