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‘Korea has great potential’: Gates

Microsoft founder says he hopes to come here next year  PLAY AUDIO

June 29,2006

Microsoft chairman Bill Gates watches Korean university students demonstrate their “motion exerciser” program, which the students developed on their own. [YONHAP]

REDMOND, Washington― Microsoft chairman Bill Gates said that health and education are mankind’s two most important goals, and that he is working to find ways to use modern technology, such as software, to benefit human health. At Microsoft’s headquarters here, Mr. Gates met with about 20 university students from seven countries participating in the “Imagine Cup,” an annual invention contest hosted by the U.S. company. The theme of this year’s cup is, “Imagine a world where technology enables us to live healthier lives.” Talking with students, and later with the JoongAng Ilbo in a separate interview, Mr. Gates pointed out that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation that he runs focuses on health problems and that he has been studying health issues. When asked what he felt about the donation of $31 billion to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation by Warren Buffet, a billionaire investor, Mr. Gates said he was surprised. “I was honored that he donated his wealth to my foundation,” he said. He added that he had learned much from Mr. Buffet, who he said had often given him useful advice. Mr. Gates said that he is constantly looking for talented people around the world because technology develops so quickly that quality developers are always few and far between. “When I meet future developers, I get to know the pros and cons of software that I haven’t thought of, and it makes me happy,” he said. Regarding Korea, Mr. Gates said that the country has great potential and that there are many opportunities to test new software there due to its high-speed Internet infrastructure and good Internet service distribution. “I hope to visit Korea next year,” he said. At the Microsoft Visitors’ Center, Mr. Gates watched the student teams participating in the competition demonstrate their software. Korea’s “Sweet Dream Team” developed a program that could sense human movement, and was first in line to meet the technology guru. He wiggled along to a fast beat that the Korean team danced to, with the program they developed recording their movements. He also examined the Indian team’s road-assistance program for the blind and tried on three-dimensional glasses to read dentistry information provided by the Japanese student team. After the event and interview, Mr. Gates drove off in his blue Ferrari sports car. by Hong Joo-yun


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