Genius is never vanilla, never simple. There are quirks, oddities and paradoxes. See if you can match the 20/20 honoree with the description. Answers and page numbers where their stories appear are below.
1 What CEO of a leading PC company dropped out after just one year of college?
2 This intrepid dotcom CEO once stayed in a scorpion-infested, $5-a-night hotel room in Guatemala in order to meet with local craftswomen whose village was being wired so that they could sell their wares online.
3 This software CEO always wears a suit, even in the famously laid-back sartorial culture of Silicon Valley.
4 Which technology company CEO twice has dropped his drawers in the middle of a yacht race to moon another 20/20 honoree?
5 This Internet pioneer built his first computer using an old television set and a soldering iron.
6 What outspoken technology leader scored a perfect 800 on the math half of the SAT?
7 This politically active Silicon Valley icon’s name was floated as a possible running mate for Al Gore in the 2000 presidential election.
8 This technology inventor says he programs his brain to ponder problems while he sleeps, a technique that has led to the development of a virtual reality process for which he is now pursuing a patent.
9 Which CIO for a global delivery service is a former Air Force brat whose worldview comes from having lived abroad almost exclusively until the age of 15?
10 This CEO was named Time’s Person of the Year in 1999 although his company went eight years without recording a profitable quarter.
11 Which entertainment company CIO played in a rock band with the immortal Gary (“I danced ’til a quarter-to-three”) U.S. Bonds?
12 This technology leader is an expert in both the Hebrew Bible and Egyptian hieroglyphics.
13 This Silicon Valley titan has created a medical research foundation to study the causes and effects of aging.
14 This insurance industry CIO once introduced herself to her employees by showing them slides of the Good Witch of the North and the Wicked Witch of the West.
15 And speaking of show biz, this technology president and COO is the proud recipient of both an Oscar and an Emmy.
16 This financial company COO married psychology with data mining to lead his company to the head of the customer service pack.
17 Which travel company CEO is a such a contrarian that he is (seemingly) undercutting his own business by promoting videoconferencing technology?
18 This Internet visionary is currently helping NASA build an interplanetary version of the Internet.
19 Which chemical company CIO has appeared at company functions as Elwood Blues, Dan Aykroyd’s half of the Blues Brothers?
20 This CIO has been awarded the French Legion d’Honneur Award, an honor that was instituted by Napoleon and is the equivalent of a British knighthood.
Answers: 1. Michael Dell, 63; 2. Meg Whitman, 100; 3. Tom Siebel, 76; 4. Hasso Plattner, 75; 5. Tim Berners-Lee, 62; 6. Scott McNealy, 74; 7. John Doerr, 64; 8. Ray Kurzweil, 71; 9. Robert Carter, 88; 10. Jeff Bezos, 86; 11. John Boushy, 87; 12. David Schell, 75; 13. Larry Ellison, 64; 14. Andrea Anania, 86; 15. Mike Lazaridis, 73; 16. Nigel Morris, 92; 17. Hal Rosenbluth, 96; 18. Vinton Cerf, 62; 19. Dave Kepler, 89; 20. Claude Cargou, 87.