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