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Gates: Look to the past for the future of Windows

OS could include new features that today are provided off the shelf by third parties.

In comments to CNET, Bill Gates suggested that the history of the Windows operating system pointed to the future inclusion of new features that are today provided by off-the-shelf applications sold by competitors.

"The history of Windows is that we do something in the platform and then there are some things missing that sell in high volume as add-ons.....People used to buy TCP/IP stacks. People used to buy basic backup software. People used to buy fonts. At least nominally, people paid for browsers...When you come into the world of software, you know that if you are up at a higher level and you have something superimportant, it's going to move down, down, down and eventually be part of every copy of the operating system, if it is something super-important."

To read the text of the full Q&A, click here.