It was a bold proclamation from the tech world's leading visionary. "640K is more memory than anyone will ever need on a computer," Gates reportedly said at a computer trade show in the early 1980s. Only he didn't really say it.
This rumor refuses to die in spite of his repeated public protestations. "I've said some stupid things and some wrong things, but not that. No one involved in computers would ever say that a certain amount of memory is enough for all time."
In addition to his vehement denials, there doesn't seem to be any real forthcoming evidence regarding this quote -- either for or against its existence. Numerous publications have attempted in vain to confirm the now-infamous 640K statement.
Thanks to the Internet and the way it continually regurgitates this information, Gates may be dealing with this myth for the rest of his life. "I keep bumping into that silly quotation attributed to me that says 640K of memory is enough. There's never a citation; the quotation just floats like a rumor, repeated again and again."
However, perhaps common sense should guide anyone who thinks this one might be true. Considering Gates's technical expertise and business sense, it seems likely that even in the beginning stages of the personal computer revolution, he would've known computers were going to get faster and better in a hurry.