Both are 20th century cult figures. Both are seen as tech gods by millions of followers across the globe who have built strong software communities around their respective ideologies. Both will find their rightful places in history. And both came to India at around the same time. But that's where the similarities end.
The clean-shaven, meticulously-dressed Bill Gates became the richest man on earth by selling proprietary software. Powerful politicians and top-notch businessmen queue up to rub shoulders with him. In contrast, the unkempt Richard Stallman (we know you are already asking Richard who!) looks more like one of the Grateful Dead. Microsoft is dangling carrots, including a $100 m handout to the government. But he is also the world's best-known proponent of free software, a man who coined the word "copyleft" as opposed to "copyright", and is revered by the nerds.