Saturday, April 12, 2008

Randy Pausch "Last Lecture."

Randy Pausch is a married father of three, a very popular professor at Carnegie Mellon University—and he is dying. He is suffering from pancreatic cancer, which he says has returned after surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. Doctors say he has only a few months to live.

In September 2007, Randy gave a final lecture to his students at Carnegie Mellon that has since been downloaded more than a million times on the Internet. "There's an academic tradition called the 'Last Lecture.' Hypothetically, if you knew you were going to die and you had one last lecture, what would you say to your students?" Randy says. "Well, for me, there's an elephant in the room. And the elephant in the room, for me, it wasn't hypothetical."

Despite the lecture's wide popularity, Randy says he really only intended his words for his three small children. "I think it's great that so many people have benefited from this lecture, but the truth of the matter is that I didn't really even give it to the 400 people at Carnegie Mellon who came. I only wrote this lecture for three people, and when they're older, they'll watch it," he says.




Dr. Randy Pausch
Dr. Randy Pausch
Born October 23, 1960 (1960-10-23) (age 47)
Residence United States
Citizenship United States
Fields Computer science
Institutions Carnegie Mellon University
Alma mater Brown University, Carnegie Mellon University
Known for Creator of Alice software project
co-founder of CMU's Entertainment Technology Center
Virtual Reality Research with Disney Imagineers
Inspirational speeches regarding life
Battle with cancer
Notable awards Karl V. Karlstrom Outstanding Educator Award
ACM Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education
Award for Outstanding Contributions to Computer Science Education

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

How inspiring Randy Pausch is! If you liked "The Last Lecture", another fantastic memoir I just read and highly recommend is "My Stroke of Insight" by Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor. Her TEDTalk video (ted.com) has been seen as many times as The Last Lecture I think, and Oprah did 4 shows on her book, so there are a lot of similarities. In My Stroke of Insight, there's a happy ending though. It's an incredible story! I hear they're making it into a movie.