Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates remembered fellow tech Paul Allen pioneer with a touching essay on gatesnotes.com called “What I Loved About Paul Allen.”
In his missive, Gates, who launched his multibillion dollar company with Allen in 1975, refers to his first business partner as “one of my oldest friends” and recalls meeting the then-high school freshman while he himself was a seventh-grader.
“I looked up to him right away,” Gates, 62, wrote. Allen died Monday from cancer. He was 65.
RELATED: Reaction to Paul Allen's death
Reaction to Paul Allen's death
Reaction to Paul Allen's death
Paul Allen, Microsoft co-founder and owner of the Seahawks and Trail Blazers, died at 65.
**Click through the following slides to see how people are honoring the investor and philanthropist.**
(Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
New: @BillGates statement on the passing of Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen: "I am heartbroken by the passing of on… https://t.co/vtY6YlGfOd
We have lost a friend and a giant. Mr. Allen, thank you for your extraordinary vision, your abundant generosity and… https://t.co/254ol4oDG1
RIP Paul Allen. Thank you for your immeasurable contributions to the community and beyond... Rock on. https://t.co/0C33KqA47k
Our industry has lost a pioneer and our world has lost a force for good. We send our deepest condolences to Paul’s… https://t.co/JbYha1ccit
Just woke up to the sad news about Paul Allen! My family and i deepest condolences goes out to the family and frien… https://t.co/gmFNQbXA3j
Sad to hear of the passing of Paul Allen, who was a strong advocate for environmental protection. He and the team a… https://t.co/vMVNQTeKgs
RIP to my dear friend (& killer guitar player) Paul Allen. Your genius & generosity has & will forever be felt by mankind.
Deeply saddened by the passing of @PaulGAllen. I’ll miss him greatly. His gracious leadership and tremendous inspir… https://t.co/MYONGpsjnG
Rest In Peace, Paul Allen. https://t.co/l03ZfAZmyh
We lost a great technology pioneer today - thank you Paul Allen for your immense contributions to the world through… https://t.co/9NL64MEutz
The world has lost a remarkable human being. Co-founder of Microsoft, owner of two sports franchises and amazing ph… https://t.co/vPMH43uCJ6
Very sad to hear of Paul Allen’s passing. His passion for invention and pushing forward inspired so many. He was re… https://t.co/2WrsMNzyrt
STATEMENT FROM NFL COMMISSIONER ROGER GOODELL ON THE PASSING OF PAUL ALLEN https://t.co/RxBgt91gn3
#RIPPaulAllen A salute tech pioneer and Microsoft cofounder, Paul Allen. https://t.co/e6pZ4O2qkt
I will be always thankful for @PaulGAllen’s generosity and his kind heart. He was a genius, and genuine person, who… https://t.co/qRRgihpjrj
Paul Allen's immeasurable impact on Seattle, the Pacific Northwest and the world will not be forgotten.
May he Re… https://t.co/1WTGWonBbb
So sad to hear about the passing of Paul Allen. Among many other things he was a pioneer of commercial space travel… https://t.co/brSXSYyQxY
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver released the following statement today regarding the passing of Portland Trail Blazers… https://t.co/0G0WnI9MOm
Terrible news. Prayers to Mr. Allen’s Family.. https://t.co/1QV0GgGn4s
Paul Allen was of course a brilliant technologist & leaves a huge legacy in business and sports. But his unabashed… https://t.co/nVouhHaXuP
Rest In Peace Paul Allen. Thank you for everything! You will be missed. My prayers go to the entire Allen family.
Wow! 🙏🏽 R.I.P. https://t.co/biGP8d3sNp
Just heard the news about the death of Paul Allen. I had the great honor of spending 7 years with him in Porltland.… https://t.co/CGRxPkk96T
So sad to hear the news of Paul Allen. Was a great person and great owner. Thank you for the two years in PDX. Cond… https://t.co/jA6BvUJxDS
Thank you for being you, @PaulGAllen. Grateful I had the chance to know you.
Paul Allen will never be forgotten. He was a great owner, an amazing leader and a truly wonderful person. I'm forev… https://t.co/s4uURGQkbk
My heart goes out to Paul Allen’s loves ones, his many friends and the Seahawks organization.
Saddened by the passing of Paul Allen a great leader in tech and a man of all seasons who fully enjoyed his life an… https://t.co/R8kxy2CKjv
Devastated ...lost an amazing friend 🌹 https://t.co/Yjrn3HBS0H
RIP Paul Allen https://t.co/NYhkACObUk
My statement on one of the greatest persons I have ever had a chance to be around.
RIP, Paul Allen.
Thank you f… https://t.co/f9a3j4r4ZQ
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Gates, who is reportedly worth nearly $98 billion, recalled noticing right away that Allen was “really tall” and a genius with computers.
"Later, he also had a very cool beard, which I could never pull off," Gates wrote.
According to Gates, Allen knew 50 years ago that cyber technology would grow to become more powerful before anyone else had imagined personal computers.
In 1974, Allen showed Gates a computer magazine featuring the Altair 8800 unit and said, “This is happening without us!”
That’s when Gates decided to drop out of Harvard University and go into business with Allen. In addition to calling his old pal “the most knowledgeable person I knew,” Gates remembers Allen as being the more hip of the two.
“Paul was cooler than I was,” Gates wrote. “He was really into Jimi Hendrix as a teenager, and I remember him playing ‘Are You Experienced?’ for me.”
Allen also got Gates into basketball by taking him to Portland Trailblazers games and explaining the intricacies of the game. Allen bought the team in 1988 for $70 million.
Gates praised Allen as a champion of philanthropy.
“Paul deserved more time in life. He would have made the most of it,” Gates concluded in his essay. “I will miss him tremendously.”