Bill Gates, the Harvard dropout who amassed a personal fortune worth more than $3 billion by building Microsoft into the world's largest computer software company, will be the subject of an independent investigative biography to be published next year by Doubleday.

"Billion-Dollar Bill: Gates and Microsoft and How They Grew," by Stephen Manes and Paul Andrews, will present the first comprehensive, in-depth look at Gates and his company's revolutionary impact on the computer industry and society at largeThe book will follow Gates from his youth as a budding programming genius and entrepreneur to his current command of a burgeoning global empire with more than 6,000 employees and annual sales of $1.4 billion.