Feeds

Bill Gates now Sir Bill Gates: official

Honours Queen with royal visit

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Our artist's impression of how we believe Sir Bill may appear todayMicrosoft employees take note: philanthropic rich bloke Bill Gates should now be formally addressed as Bill Gates KBE (Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) - following a quick tap on the shoulder from Her Imperial Majestyness Liz II at Buck House this morning.

The Queen has been pacing up and down the corridors of her London residence for over 12 months - pausing only to kick the occassional corgi - awaiting a window in the MS supremo's diary during which she might accord him the honourary knighthood announced more than a year ago.

Sir Bill joins an illustrious list of fellow American awarded the coveted KBE. Her Maj has already deployed the sword on Ronald Reagan, George Bush Snr., Rudolph Giuliani and Bob Hope. In Gate's case, however, the title acknowledges not the relentless pursuit of world peace (Reagan, Bush), the cleansing of the streets of New York in the style of Travis Bickle (Giuliani), or, erm [insert some suitable acheivement here - ed] (Hope), but rather "Gates’ contributions to improving health and reducing poverty in parts of the Commonwealth and elsewhere in the developing world", as the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office put it.

And if that wasn't enough, Gates was also recognized for his "contribution to enterprise, employment, education and the voluntary sector in the United Kingdom". Crikey.

Of course, what is said as Liz unsheathes her mighty sword of state is purely a matter for the monarch and the honouree. We sincerely hope, though, that Prince Chaz pressed upon his mother the necessity to take Sir Bill to task on deficiencies in XP SP2 and berate his company's tardiness in plugging the gaping holes in Internet Explorer.

Charles, naturally, runs organic Linux on a recycled cardboard PC powered by methane from hunting hound excrement. We find it inconceivable that he does not have an opinion on the Windows OS and hoped to use the investiture as an opportunity to raise his concerns about the effect of bundled software on the environment.

Having said that, perhaps Mr Gates and Mrs Windsor chose simply to talk about how staggeringly rich they both are - which is why Gates is in a position to fund his Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Windsor owns an enormous palace in which to honour him for the same.

As for Sir Bill of Redmond, the evidently-moved Knight declared after the ceremony:

"I am humbled and delighted. I’m particularly pleased that this honour helps recognise the real heroes our foundation supports to improve health in poor countries. Their incredible work is helping ensure that one day all people - no matter where they are born - will have the same opportunity for a healthy life, and I’m grateful to share this honour with them.

"This honour is particularly poignant given the deep connections Microsoft enjoys with the United Kingdom. Over the past 23 years we have benefited greatly from strong business alliances and the tremendous wealth of talent and creativity of our UK employees and researchers. The UK was the first country in which Microsoft set up a subsidiary outside the US, and our experience in the UK has been significant in shaping our international growth. The companies and organisations that we have supported and partnered with since, and their employees, have been an important part of the positive impact technology has had on economic growth and on the lives of people in the UK. I am proud of this special relationship and the role we have helped to play in the development of the UK technology industry."

Blimey, it fair brings a tear to your eye. Gawd bless yer, Sir Bill. ®

Bootnote

Yes, yes, we know he isn't really "Sir" Bill (more on why here), but you try getting a few cheap gags out of "Bill Gates KBE". Enough said.

Related stories

Bill Gates receives knighthood
UK knighthoods for foreigners: what it takes to get one

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

More from The Register

next story
NSA man: 'Tell me about your Turkish connections'
Spooks ask Dabbsy to suggest a nice hotel with pool
Russia sends SEX-CRAZED GECKOS to SPAAAAACE!
In space... no one can hear you're green...
Carlos: Slim your working week to just three days of toil
'Midas World' vision suggests you retire later, watch more tellie and buy more stuff
Yahoo! Japan! launches! service! for! the! dead!
If you're reading this email, I am no longer alive
Plucky Rockall podule man back on (proper) dry land
Bold, barmy Brit adventurer Nick Hancock escapes North Atlantic islet
Motorist 'thought car had caught fire' as Adele track came on stereo
'FIRE' caption on dashboard prompts dunderheaded hard shoulder halt
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.