back to article Bill Gates joined on stage by jar of poop as he confesses deep love for talking about toilets

Bill Gates' obsession with all things faecal continued apace on Tuesday as the billionaire philanthropist took to a Beijing stage armed only with a fierce determination to improve global sanitation. And a jar of poo. The stunt may remind some of the 1993 episode of the BBC current affairs quiz show, Have I Got News For You, …

  1. malle-herbert

    "Reinvented Toilet Expo"

    Or as we call it : "Windows 10 developers conference"....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "Reinvented Toilet Expo"

      As posted earlier

      I come here not to praise W10 but to compost it.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "Reinvented Toilet Expo"

      It's not as if they are flush with success at the moment.

  2. Albert Hall

    Cue the toilet humour... whoops, too late!

    Who's taking the piss then?

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: Cue the toilet humour... whoops, too late!

      I once wrote a trashcan desktop icon application that was a toilet (back in the windows 3.x days).

      Nowadays, we can expect that "windows everywhere" will soon turn EVERY desktopcomputer into a toilet. After all, it's the new "lowest common denominator" platform upon which UWP must "look and feel" the same, everywhere, because, Win-10-nic.

      now, how will that 2D FLATSO toilet interface work again?

      1. Trilkhai

        Re: Cue the toilet humour... whoops, too late!

        That would've gone well with the .wav of a toilet flushing that I used with Windows 9x in place of the default "empty recycle bin" sound.

        Also, your coupling of "2d flatso" with "toilets" has given me an entirely new perspective on the holes in the animated Yellow Submarine film...

  3. Ima Ballsy

    Well that

    sums it up - Microsoft has gone down the crapper .....

    NO WAIT - they did that a long time ago ......

  4. J. Cook Silver badge

    the poo puns have bowled over this powerfully painful and potent punster.

    Either that, or I'm taking the piss.

    don't forget to wipe!

  5. LDS Silver badge

    Well, other billionaries are busy and eager to give people mobes before toilets...

    ... I guess Gates understood which kind of poo you need to learn to manage first...

    (don't drink that)

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This reminds me of a very interesting article I read just yesterday.......

  7. Eddy Ito

    Does this mean he is founding a new Manure System?

  8. vir

    Obligatory XKCD

    While it's statistically likely that some of the water you drink has been previously consumed by another person, the actual percentage is quite small.

    1. Kane Silver badge

      Re: Obligatory XKCD

      yeah, but...dinosaurs.

  9. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

    Crap! Crap! Crap!

    He should have pranced around the stage like Steve Ballmer shoting "Developers! Developers! Developers!"

    1. Fungus Bob

      Re: Crap! Crap! Crap!

      "De Turbolax, De Turbolax, De Turbolax,..." (?)

    2. onefang

      Re: Crap! Crap! Crap!

      "He should have pranced around the stage like Steve Ballmer shoting"

      You think he should have been drinking crap shots?

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    That's nothing...

    A very useful skill is to walk out stage with a large bucket of it, climb into the bucket, stand there up to your knees in it. All while holding a lengthy news conference. Do not mention the bucket or its contents even once. Don't even react to it. If questioned, deny its very existence. "There is no bucket, and I'm not standing in it."

    This is the skill that is required these days.

    1. Waseem Alkurdi

      Re: That's nothing...

      This isn't the problem. The problem is that some people are going to immediately disbelieve their eyes and believe his denial. He said it, so it must be right. This class of people is what we call fanboys/gals.

  11. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

    The Good, the Bad and Microsoft

    Large, hard stools - Bad

    Small, soft stools - Good

    Microsoft tools - VisualStudio

  12. cat_mara

    "Bill Gates joined on stage by jar of poop"

    So what are they calling this one? "Windows 10 Mr. Hanky Christmas Update"?

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: "Bill Gates joined on stage by jar of poop"

      (re: Mr Hanky shoutout)

      Hi-dy Ho!

      /me can't find 'poo' icon...

      1. onefang

        Re: "Bill Gates joined on stage by jar of poop"

        "/me can't find 'poo' icon..."

        I'm sure it's in Unicode somewhere, though YMMV when it comes to rendering that properly. U+1F4A9 or 💩 if that helps.

        Edit: El Reg says "The post contains some characters we can’t support", so I deleted the actual poop character.

  13. rich_a

    Fair play to BillyG, spending his time and vast wealth on trying to make things less shitty for the developing world by attempting to reinvent the WC and cure malaria.

    1. onefang

      "Fair play to BillyG, spending his time and vast wealth on trying to make things less shitty for the developing world"

      Ah, but he got his vast wealth by making things more shitty for everyone.

  14. Unicornpiss Silver badge

    Windows FE (Fecal Edition)

    Preparing to configure toilet... Ready for download. Something went wrong :( Refer to log below for details. All personal data has been wiped. Please try flushing the download cache and try again.

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: Windows FE (Fecal Edition)

      maybe it would be an improvement over the so-called "low water flush" toilets. So instead of flushing ONCE [older designs], by using LESS water per flush, you have to flush it 3 times to "get it all"... (or listen to it running constantly when the 'bulk' has too much mass to get past the bendy part because it 'uses less water').

      Either that, or it'll be "flush it 5 times" like a reboot process during "up"grades.

      what's next, 'slurping' up data about what we've been eating, and if "it floats" it's "you're eating too much meat/fast-food" and activists will now picket your house?

      The potential assault on privacy and freedom (and marketing it or using it against you politically) is too much for Micro-shaft to ignore!

      1. Unicornpiss Silver badge

        Re: Windows FE (Fecal Edition)

        what's next, 'slurping' up data about what we've been eating, and if "it floats" it's "you're eating too much meat/fast-food"

        Some while ago I had an orange circle pop up on Skype admonishing me "Add a photo! It'll help people get to know you!" I can just imagine a MS-powered toilet telling me "You should eat more fiber!" or "Another night at the bar! Tsk Tsk"

  15. onefang

    "Bill Gates' obsession with all things faecal"

    I guess that explains Microsoft.

    Aaaand I'm done crapping on, it's too hot here, my comments stink.

  16. PhilipN Silver badge

    Attack the Source

    No, that’s not what I meant.

    I know this is going to attract an inflammatory response and, tragic it is that so many infants are at risk, might I suggest it would be better in those places where the risk is greatest if the blokes were encouraged to keep their todgers under control?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Attack the Source

      I think your bodily geography is out: we're presently talking about the other side ..


      1. PhilipN Silver badge

        Re: Attack the Source

        Respectfully, seems you misunderstood the connection alluded to in my post between todgers and infants.

        I could explain but this is one time I can felicitously say I can't be arsed.

  17. John Mangan

    What does this mean?

    "$0.05 cents"

    1. FrogsAndChips Silver badge

      Re: What does this mean?

      I read that as 0.05 of a USD cent. Or to put it back in context, 5 cents per day for 100 users.

  18. Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

    Good thing, actually

    One of my favourite charities "Water Aid" also takes a keen interest in sanitation. Having learned a little about how the world works outside of my immediate surroundings, I can understand why.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Big Necessity

    By Rose George. Still relevant today and still worth reading to give you an idea of the scope of the problem (e.g. and other reviews). Glad to see that Billy has caught on.

  20. Moosh

    All very well and good...

    Very noble, a good cause I do agree with. The issue is that the end goal is rather unrealistic. Why? A lot of the problems are also cultural.

    For example; digging your own "shitpit" (i forget the formal name) or filling in an existing one (generally just handling your own excrement) is seen as beneath people in India, and to be known to do so could brand you as an untouchable, the lowest caste in indian society. There's an increase in India of people wanting to build overly huge pits that are going to last for multiple decades of use just so they never have to get involved with excrement maintenance. Not only this, but in India open defecation is seen as the norm. Attempts to introduce toilets to indian villages have lead to varied responses, included the toilet becoming a shrine or being used to make curries.

    Likewise, there are areas of Africa where the floors are absolutely littered with literal human excrement and other waste; there are beaches absolutely filled to the brim with human faeces and polluting the ocean. Again, there is the issue of open defecation being the norm, but there's also clearly a cultural component here as well; there's no centralised giant pile of rubbish, its largely dropped as its used.

    In china as well, open defecation is a reality for millions and millions.

    The (seemingly insurmountable) challenge isn't just more efficient methods of waste disposal, but in changing long held cultural beliefs around the handling of excrement and how people are supposed to defecate.

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge

      open defecation "the norm" in a society

      unfortunately, we cannot "do for them" what they are unable/unwilling to "do for themselves" without executing some kind of pressure upon them, like foreigners refusing to go to cities (or employ people) where public 'un-sanitation' is considered "normal".

      I'm not sure anyone is so altruistic as to subscribe to that notion. However, if it DID become a 'human rights' issue of some kind, at the U.N. for example, it would have to side with those who are adversely affected by poor/nonexistent public sanitation.

      In the 1st world, trash pickup and sewers and sewage treatment are considered 'normal'. The black plague was one of the reasons why this is so. Preventing plagues was a huge motivation behind not dumping bedpans or chamber pots into the street, and requiring the use of public toilets instead of gutters.

      Then again, with things being as they are (and getting a bit worse, I'd say), places like San Francisco are looking more like the 3rd world every day...

      Anyway, attitudes have to change. Just like it is with some countries still violating civil rights based on sex, religion, etc. we can't fix THEIR problems until THEY are willing to fix THEIR problems. [it's possible to pressure them to change their minds, but that's a slow and politically charged process sometimes, especially when that country makes your electronic toys or provides you with oil or raw materials]

    2. onefang

      Re: All very well and good...

      "Attempts to introduce toilets to indian villages have lead to varied responses, included the toilet becoming a shrine or being used to make curries."

      Remind me to never ever eat a curry in India.

  21. crocodome

    Logs I do not wish to review.

  22. Random Q Hacker

    El Reg, scientifically constipated?

    This article, though entertainingly tongue in cheek(s?), did not really discuss any of the scientific aspects. What advances were made? Are there prototypes or production models of this new tech? I expect more poop in the Reg's scoop.

    1. onefang

      Re: El Reg, scientifically constipated?

      So you think the article was shit, and should have spread out some more details about the poop? Opened a door on the toilet tech? Lit a match, er to shine a light on the more important things?

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