It is thanksgiving in the U.S., and so there the usual news items regarding how many things we have to give thanks for abound. I’m Canadian, so our thanksgiving was a few weeks ago…but our friendly neighbors to the south generate the majority of our news, so we sort of get the benefits of two holidays through a sort of osmosis. Unfortunately, I’m feeling under the weather today, and any time I have a cold or flu I end up feeling a bit sorry for myself- I wasn’t feeling any particular “thankful” vibe today.
That changed with one news item that passed through my radar , something which I had read about before but not really paid a lot of attention to. A well-liked computing science professor at Carnegie Mellon University, Randy Pausch, gave a lecture in September. The theme of the lecture series he was presenting for: what would you want to pass on to the students if this were your last lecture?
In Randy’s case, it really was his last lecture. He had been diagnosed with cancer a couple of months earlier, and was given less than six months to live. The video of his lecture is, in my opinion, worth spending a couple of hours to watch. He is an energetic speaker, and I can see why he is well liked by his students.