In an excerpt from an upcoming book released Wednesday, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen paints co-founder Bill Gates as a technical genius, but as a ruthless executive who tried to dilute Allen's financial stake in the early days of Microsoft.
In the excerpt from Idea Man, Allen's upcoming book, Gates is characterized as an intensely focused mathematical genius, with a penchant for social quirks. Allen describes himself as the glue that held Microsoft together.
Idea Man is scheduled to be published this month by Portfolio, a member of the Penguin Group. The excerpt was published by Vanity Fair.
The crux of the story seems to lie in the last anecdote Allen relates: a scene in which Gates and Steve Ballmer, brought in to run the company, apparently scheme to dilute Allen's stake in the company. Allen describes Ballmer as looking like "an operative for the N.K.V.D." Allen, then suffering from Hodgkin's lymphoma, recounts the scene: