Gates' house, viewed from Lake Washington. Photo: TikTik
Each fall as part of Microsoft's charitable giving campaign, people at redmond company donate products, services and experiences for their fellow employees to bid on. The item that typically fetches highest bid is a tour of Bill Gates' Lake Washington home for winner and a small group of friends, guided by Gates, with appetizers at end. Last year, in middle of economic meltdown, the winning bid was $8,600. This year, with things starting to rebound, bidding rose to $35,000. No word on who was willing to pay that much, but presumably it wasn't a junior tester. Microsoft CIO Tony Scott at the Society for Information Management's national SIMposium convention in Seattle, said of the winning bid for the Gates tour. "We're encouraging Bill to donate that item again next year."