Paul G. Allen, Microsoft’s Co-Founder, Is Dead at 65

from NYTs

Paul G. Allen, the co-founder of Microsoft who helped usher in the personal computing revolution and then channeled his enormous fortune into transforming Seattle into a cultural destination, died on Monday in Seattle. He was 65.

The cause was complications of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, his family said in a statement.

The disease recurred recently after having been in remission for years. He left Microsoft in the early 1980s, after the cancer first appeared, and, using his enormous wealth, went on to make a powerful impact on Seattle life through his philanthropy and his ownership of the N.F.L. team there, ensuring that it would remain in the city.

Mr. Allen was a force at Microsoft during its first seven years, along with its co-founder, Bill Gates, as the personal computer was moving from a hobbyist curiosity to a mainstream technology, used by both businesses and consumers.

When the company was founded, in 1975, the machines were known as microcomputers, to distinguish the desktop computers from the hulking machines of the day. Mr. Allen came up with the name Micro-Soft, an apt one for a company that made software for small computers. The term personal computer would become commonplace later.

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6 Comments

  1. The death of Paul Allen can be described as a blow to the whole PC community as well as the technology sector and Seattle as a whole. As a PC builder and hobbyist myself, it is very safe to say the actions and innovations by Allen were able to bring personal computing to the world in an cost-effective manor allowing enthusiasts like myself to enjoy the technology at a level that would be unheard of in his time. Microsoft is the industry leader in the operating system industry, beating out competitors like Apple and Linux by the sheer volume of the output of their devices. Every non-Apple laptop ships with Windows 10 or 8.1. Microsoft is near synonymous with personal computing, and it is thanks to Allen. I think Microsoft, the name and the company, is largely attributed to Bill Gates, that is just not true. It is often the case that only one of the founders can be given the praise of their creation, like Steve Jobs. But Allen’s contributions to making Microsoft what it is today cannot be overstated. The fledgling years of startups are incredibly important, and Allen was there for as long as his health would allow.

    When he was unable to continue at Microsoft, he used his considerable wealth for good. Purchasing the Seahawks, the NFL team, and allowing them to stay in Seattle is a huge endeavor that has paid dividends both for Allen but more importantly the city of Seattle. Allen was the type of person to not let his disease limit his ability to help others for himself, and was able to create another legacy, leaving one of philanthropy in Seattle. He will be remembered for the co-creation of the PC, and bringing technology to homes across the world, but also, and possibly more importantly, leaving a positive, indelible impact on Seattle that will last for years to come.

  2. That is crazy to think that after Steve Jobs in 2011, another major contributor of the digital revolution is dead. Paul Allen represents this generation of geek that left college to revolutionize the world. Microsoft has been one of the precursor in terms of operating system with its famous Windows OS. Windows became quickly the most used computer operating system in the world in the 2000´s and it is still the main operating system currently on the market with Mac OS. Paul Allen was among few visionaries like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs who anticipated the future and predicted that one day everyone would have its own personal computer. On 1986, 11 years after its creation by the two youngster Gates and Allen, Microsoft’s stock went public and the company became the most valuable firm on earth. The success of Microsoft made Paul Allen among the richest person on the planet. In 2001 he was the third richest man on earth behind Microsoft’s co-founder Bill Gates and Warren Buffet. His net worth was estimated at $30.4 billions in 2001. Additionally to his success with Microsoft, Allen was an excellent guitarist. He was in a band named the Underthinkers and they released a blues-rock album « Everywhere At Once » in 2013. Also, he invested a part of his fortune into the Allen Instistute for Brain Science. The main purpose behind his investment is to accelerate the understanding of how the humain brain works in order to reduce disease such as Alzheimer, cancers, or non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, the disease that he was suffering from.

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/clareoconnor/2014/01/31/10-things-you-didnt-know-about-microsoft-billionaire-paul-allen-seattle-seahawks-owner/amp/

  3. The death of Paul Allen is an extreme tragedy to say the absolute least. The life and doings of Paul Allen was comparable to what Steve Jobs had done in his lifetime, as both were some of the most incredible innovators and human beings within our generation, and it is extremely sad to see that the media didn’t treat it as such.

    Allen has done plenty of amazing things in his life, first starting off with his partnership with Bill Gates in completely revolutionizing the computer. Him and Bill worked their tails off to produce the first (and coin the term) personal computer. In this time, this was huge because the only computers out there were either bulky desktops, or gigantic server-room type computers. He paved the way for personal computers along with Gates, and without either of them, our technology could be so much more different.

    Allen’s impact stretched way beyond Microsoft, too. As well as being a co-founder of Microsoft, Allen pretty much ran the northwestern sports scene, as he was the owner of both the Seattle Seahawks (NFL) and the Portland Trail Blazers (NBA). Allen was able to put both of these historic franchises in the position to succeed, as was able to see the Seahawks, his official team since 1996, win the Super Bowl and subsequently, hoist the Lombardi Trophy himself. He also was prominent about making Seattle a city full of life and charm, managed to turn real estate property into hives of great technological advancement, as he was able to supplant Google and Amazon into the community. Allen very much made Seattle a greater place, and was intent on making the city thrive in more ways than one.

    There was also his low-key philanthropic life, that speaks great volumes about his true character. Even though Allen preferred to stay out of media attention when given the chance, Allen donated $2 billion toward everything and anything to help our current generation, ranging from helping the environment to developing institutes for things such as brain science and artificial intelligence.
    People will always talk about the good that others do for their countries and for their cities.
    There are a lot of people who do great things in this country, ranging from a lot more well-known philanthropists (such as Warren Buffet), to more up-and-coming small philanthropists (such as Chance The Rapper). However, Paul Allen might go down as one of the few philanthropists that deserved a bigger spotlight.

    Rest In Peace.

  4. It is so upsetting to see another person that is so important to our nation’s history and advancements pass away. Paul G. Allen, along with Bill Gates founded Microsoft together. If it were not for this discovery in the mid 1970’s then we would not have had the first computers invented so early on. We have seen the deaths of many significant people all happen so quickly and pretty much one after another. Steve Jobs, founded of Apple, passed away October 5th, 2011. Without him advancements such as the iPhone, Mac, and even something as simple as the different fonts on all computers would not exist. Both Allen and Jobs passed away to some form of cancer. Both at a relatively young age too. It is awful that cancer has such an impact on our world and is constantly affecting everyone around us.
    The most upsetting part about Allen’s non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is that he has had it on and off since the 1980’s and even left Microsoft when it first appeared. He was the one that came up with their name though, and I feel as if a lot of people do not know this. Since the first “machines” that they created were called microcomputers, it only made sense to make the company name begin with the word micro. I think that more people associate Microsoft with Bill Gates instead of Paul G. Allen which is really upsetting.
    It is fascinating that Microsoft’s first operating system appeared because IBM needed them to create one. Allen and Gates tweaked a system that they bought from a programmer in Seattle, and without that we would never have Windows today. I think that it is so amazing that Allen and Steve Jobs both dropped out of college and were still able to become such well known and skilled programmers/ creators without having degrees. Their achievements show that college is not for everyone and as long as you are passionate about what you do, you can succeed. Like I said, it is so sad to hear such news that he passed away. Gates said in a statement about Allen’s death that, “From our early days together at Lakeside School, through our partnership in the creation of Microsoft, to some of our joint philanthropic projects over the years, Paul was a true partner and dear friend. Personal computing would not have existed without him.” He will always be remembered.

  5. Although I am not too familiar with Paul Allen, it is sad to see the death of an extremely creditable man in the world of computers. It seems as if major names in the computer society around us are dying more rapidly now, such as Steve Jobs. Ever since his death, we can see how much Apple and its products have changed. Now with the co-founder of Microsoft gone and only Bill Gates still left around, we are most likely now going to see a change somewhere in the company although Allen hasn’t been a part of Microsoft since the 80s. This goes to show that anyone can get cancer and that it is incurable, even for Allen being one of the richest men in the world at one time. In the time he was alive he was able to help contribute so much to the Microsoft company. This should be an example for us to contribute as much as we can to this world before we die, because death is one thing that is inevitable. We should appreciate every single day we wake up alive and enjoy every moment of living. It is sad to see Allen’s death to such a horrible cause, but it is going to cause the world to evolve even more. It is interesting to see what the new generation has in store for us and where it will lead us in the world.

  6. Paul G. Allen will go down as one of the greatest innovators to step foot on earth. Paul Allen started multiple technology companies with his most famous one being Microsoft. He is the co-founder of Microsoft with his partner being Bill Gates. He also invested early in companies such as AOL and Ticketmaster. Microsoft is the leading technology company in the world and with technology on the rise Microsoft will continue to dominate the tech industry. It truly is unfortunate to have lost such a great creative human who changed the technology industry.

    Mr. Allen partnered with Bill Gates to completely change the use of computers. They both use their talents to make the first personal computer. It is amazing how they were just two teenage friends who got introduced to computers for the first time and used their minds to create a technological powerhouse in Microsoft. It was not always easy for Mr. Allen, he dropped out of college to work as a programmer to pursue his dreams. It is great to see how Mr. Gates trusted Mr. Allen when he wanted Bill Gates to drop out of school and move to Albuquerque to supply a software to a startup company called MITS. What a great choice Bill Gates made by dropping out of school and taking the risk knowing things could go wrong but the reward could be ginormous. From there they moved to Seattle where things started off a little shaky with some disputes but it turned around quickly as Bill Gates said, “Personal Computing would not have existed without him.” This shows how one idea can change the world in a drastic way.

    Allen was far more than just the founder of Microsoft. He used his money to build a successful NFL franchise in Seattle and a NBA team in Portland. By doing that he is giving back to his community by giving them a sports team in the Northwest where the market is not as big as New York or Los Angeles. He had a vision to make Seattle a city full of opportunities and success. Additionally, he donated $2 billion dollars to help our society whether it was the environment, brain research, Artificial Intelligence, or anything that he felt would make a positive impact in society. He truly was an inspiration to all of us and will be missed dearly. He definitely left a mark in society and wants people to stay away from hate and try to make an impact in society. I will use him as motivation to always work hard and always give back to the people who helped me become who I am today. Paul Allen will be in our minds forever and is one of the greatest innovators, philanthropists, and leaders we will ever see.

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