In late 1999, an 18 year old college dropout named Shawn Fanning stayed up 60 hours straight. That's not too unusual for an 18 year old, except during that time he coded a revolutionary music sharing system called Napster. His creation was an instant hit, with thousands of users within the first few days of being released. The music industry was not amused, and eventually managed to sue Napster out of existence. It was later resurrected as "legit" subscription service, but was never able to reclaim its past glory. Now the company is up for sale. You can read the 8-K filing and press release here. In his WinInfo blog Paul Thurrot quips:
The company has $97 million in cash and approximately 17 customers to its name, so it should be a good deal for any company that's hoping to compete with Apple and then lose in an embarrassing manner.
Ouch! Luckily, Shawn was able to cash out in time with a nice nest egg, and moved on to start a company called SNOCAP.