Gates also admitted he himself was in the habit of "gaining the benefits of software authors' time, effort, and capital without paying them"...
Bricklin sent waves of laughter through the auditorium by reading a passage from Lammers' interview with Bill Gates in which the young Microsoft founder explained that his work on different versions of Microsoft's BASIC compiler was shaped by looking at how other programmers had gone about the same task. Gates went on to say that young programmers don't need computer science degrees: "The best way to prepare is to write programs, and to study great programs that other people have written. In my case, I went to the garbage cans at the Computer Science Center and I fished out listings of their operating systems."
Bricklin finished reading Gates' words and announced, with an impish smile, "This is where Gates and [Richard] Stallman agree!"
Source: Programmers at Work by Susan Lammers (1986), ISBN 0914845713
"...the best way to prepare [to be a programmer] is to write programs, and to study great programs that other people have written. In my case, I went to the garbage cans at the Computer Science Center and fished out listings of their operating system."
-- Bill Gates.