Microsoft CEO opened the Professional Developers Conference in Denver Colorado with a less than exciting keynote address before 6000 attendees. Gates said that more applications would be available for Windows NT 5.0 when it shipped than for any other operating system in history, including Windows 95.

"The day Windows NT 5.0 ships, there will be more than 60,000 commercially available applications supporting it," Gates said. "Furthermore, there will be three times as many Windows NT 5.0-specific applications than there were Windows 95-specific applications when that operating system launched. This kind of application support is unprecedented. In its first 18 months of availability, we predict the number of applications supporting Windows NT 5.0 will grow to over 100,000."

Gates spent most of his time talking about distributed applications and the Windows DNA programming model that will be realized by Windows NT 5.0 and COM+. But the keynote was overshadowed by the upcoming antitrust case his company faces and Gates did make some comments about that as well.

"We went down to Apple to talk to them about putting QuickTime into our media player," Gates told the crowd. "That kind of discussion makes sense and yet the government's twisting of that conversation should have never taken place. This is scary to me.