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Gates's Tome Hits Bookstore Shelves

According to Microsoft Corp. chairman Bill Gates, the Net is most likely just an early stepping stone along the way to the information superhighway. Gates's book The Road Ahead hits the streets today. Priced at a hefty $29.95, the book was published by Viking.

Not surprisingly, Gates is counting on repeating his success with Windows by delivering the next Net software platform for the masses. Once the golden age of the Net passes, low-cost Web pages won't be available anymore, writes Gates.

Early critics are calling Gates's book overly self-serving.