PSA: Bill Gates is doing an AMA on Reddit right now

My homeboy, William Henry Gates III, started Microsoft back in the mid-1970s. While he stepped down from full-time work over 6 years ago, he’s still Chairman and all around badass. Right now if you mosey on over to Reddit he is doing an AMA – mostly about his current work with the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation, but he’s also fielding Microsoft related questions. Bill also posted a video asking a few typical questions before hand, check it out after the break.

So what is an AMA? AMA stands for "ask me anything" and it's a forum where users on Reddit can ask questions to who ever is running the AMA - in this case Bill Gates. Popular questions are voted up by the community and usually get answered. Watch the video below to get an idea and follow the source link to check it out in action.

While no video of Bill Gates can top him jumping over a chair, it's refreshing to see his sense of humor hasn't changed. Since the AMA just started on Reddit, hit up the source link below to ask Bill some questions!

Source: Reddit AMA

  • Bill gates da man!
  • The King!
  • Man is he ever avoiding the education questions. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is gutting American schools in the name of reform, and it's very sad. 
  • I would love to hear your opinion on how to fix the educational system in the US.
  • I'm not sure there's a single silver bullet, and we should be suspicious of those who claim there is, but high-stakes testing and teacher performance pay is very clearly not the answer. WaPo had an incisive look at that this weekend.
  • Can you elaborate on this?
  • One of the AMA comments is pretty good, but if you'd like more I can try to elaborate. It's not my field of policy expertise, but I've done some work on it. 
    Paddleweight 105 points 1 hour
     ago Mr. Gates, I am a teacher recently retired after 24 years in the high poverty schools of Oakland, California.
    Your foundation has decided that the variable that is the key to overcoming poverty in the US is the ability of our teachers to raise test scores. Differences between teachers account for less than 15% of the differences in student outcomes, research has shown.
    You have stated that measuring things and setting goals has great power. Why not measure other factors that are known to contribute far more to student success? Things like rates of unplanned pregnancy, availability of preschool, equitable funding for schools, lead poisoning, access to libraries, poverty, nutrition, neighborhood violence?
    Attention to any one of these things would yield better results than our obsession over test scores. See here:  
  • So teachers have nothing to do with students success in your opinion, therefore, they should all be paid less and receive less benefits as they are little more than babysitters.
  • If by "gutting American schools", you mean investing close to $300 million, then you are right...
  • 300 million dollars, with strings attached that are desiccating public schools. So sure, I suppose so. 
  • What are the strings?
  • You are going to have to help me out here.  They are giving money too schools, not taking it away, correct?  So by your logic, if they give money to school X, but not Y, they are somehow taking money away from Y?
  • He's desecrating public schools? So let me get this straight...a PRIVATE party choosing which schools they would like to allocate PRIVATE dollars to hurts those schools that they do not donate to?
  • Desiccating. I used the word desiccating. Different word, and you completely and totally misunderstood what I said--reading comprehension is something they still teach in schools, right?The money is nice, but the programs that money is supporting are deepy problematic, and has absolutely nothing to do with school A getting money but not school B. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation supports schools, states, and programs that are willing to follow through with their vision of public education, which is oriented towards top-down standards, standardized tests, charter schools, and teacher performance pay. The goal is admirable; closing the achievement gap is critical, but these particular ways of doing so are ineffective at best, and destructive at worst. 
  • Why don't you just go and earn billions of $$$ and do everything in your own way ?
  • Or he could simply not give his money to the schools? Would you like that better? He is not the government, the foundation is not required to give money to schools and the schools aren't entitled to that foundations money. If the people who made that foundation to give money away to causes they believe in, don't want the money they give away to fall in endless pits, and want to set requirements for the money to do good in a way they believe, they are free to do so. Nobody has to accept their money. Also, all I see from you is a judgement "that he is doing it" - you have not yet explained what it is he is doing, and in what way that affects the educational system in the way you describe (negatively - gutting etc). Your turn.
  • I already had my turn. I posted the AMA question at hand, and a very lengthy and detailed op-ed in the Washington Post that highlights many of the issues with the education paradigm the Gates Foundation supports. Is that insufficient?
  • Yes, because I don't see it.  You are negatively affecting this comment section and gutting our ability to read the posts in peace by not backing up your claims.  Post a link to your so called detailed op-ed. 
    Hey I did the same thing.  Anybody can say that, but where's the proof? 
    For those who do not get sarcasm I did not do the same thing.
  • Lord Bill Gates his influence and impact >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Steve Jobs.
  • Any chance we can get highlights here after the AMA is done? I hate to sound old but i don't understand reddit.
  • I'll do you one better than highlights, I'll get all the questions and answers for you and anyone else interested. Check the site in a bit. 
  • Go here to read up on it! 
  • Thank you! Ahh this is why i love wpcentral :)
  • Who is this Gates fellow? Is he important somehow? I seem to recall he had something to do with some little software program that went nowhere.
  • you mean windows? that runs on over 1 billion computers?
  • See that nifty little magnifying glass on the bottom right corner of your phone? You should use it to look up "sarcasm".
  • i know what sarcasm means :\
  • I wish I had a good question to ask...
  • Haha I didn't so I asked Do you still use Zune to listen to music or use a windows phone for everything.
  • Microsoft is a better run company since Gates left. Better software, more innovative, more compliant with open standards. MS was more profitable under him but that was more of right place, right time.
  • I have some mixed feelings about that. Generally speaking, I love what MS is doing with Windows Phone, Windows 8, Surface, IE, Xbox/Kinect, Skydrive, Office 365, etc... I'm also a die hard .NET developer hooked on Visual Studio and Azure. That being said, its undeniable that MS has consistently dropped the ball for the last half decade. Aside from Windows 7, its hard to point to any clear solid product launches from them. WP8 and W8 are great foundations for them to finally push into mobile, I just hope its not too late.
  • Bill. Love that dude.
  • Hi Bill, 
    not sure you will remember me.
    I used to be Evangelist at MS Belgium and you and I made a few presentations/launches together, including WFW in 1992, WIN95 at the University of leuven. We also spent some time together during Scrubs and MYR's ...
    I left MS in 1997 and moved to Africa.
    A few years ago, I send my resume and applied for a job twice at the Bill and Melinda Foundation but they didn't not even bother to reply.
    At that stage I was living in Africa and was willing to share my experience and my passion for this continent, working with you.
    Can you tell me what's up now with your foundation ? 
    Kind regards,
    Bernard André
  • I dont know if you should expect an answer . . .
  • Lol!!