Jobs came up with a brilliant jujitsu maneuver against Gates,
one that could have changed the balance of power in the computer industry forever.
It required Jobs to do two things that were against his nature:
licensing out his software to another hardware maker and getting into bed with IBM.
He had a pragmatic streak, albeit a tiny one, so he was able to overcome his reluctance.
But his heart was never fully in it, which is why the alliance would turn out to be short-lived.
It began at a party, a truly memorable one,
for the seventieth birthday of the Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham in June 1987 in Washington.
Six hundred guests attended, including President Ronald Reagan.
Jobs flew in from California and IBM's chairman John Akers from New York.
It was the first time they had met.
Jobs took the opportunity to bad-mouth Microsoft and attempt to wean IBM from using its Windows operating system.
"I couldn't resist telling him I thought IBM was taking a giant gamble betting its entire software strategy on Microsoft,
because I didn't think its software was very good," Jobs recalled.
To Jobs's delight, Akers replied, "How would you like to help us?"