Who is Randy Pausch?

Randolph Frederick Randy Pausch (1960-2008) was a professor of Computer Science (CS), human-computer interaction and design at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), Pittsburgh. He completed his bachelor’s in CS at Brown University and received his PhD in the same field from CMU in 1988. Soon after, he joined University of Virginia as an associate professor in CS and served there for ten years. And then in the last ten years of his life he taught at CMU. Meanwhile Pausch introduced the Building Virtual Worlds course at CMU, wrote over 70 articles and was the author or co-author of five books.

And Randy Pausch was known for…

Pausch founded the Alice software project and co-founded CMU’s Entertainment Technology Center. His well-known inspirational speeches include the Last Lecture: Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams and the Time Management Lecture. He delivered the Last Lecture when he was battling with pancreatic cancer and only had “3 to 6 months of good health” (qtd. from the time management lecture video).

Worth mentioning points from his Time Management lecture:

# “Time is more important than money” as commodities. It was stirring when Pausch talked about how time devoted to work is worth a lot more than than every employee’s salary.

# “The overall goal is maximizing fun”. Finding fun in every work we do.

# Time management, planning is directly proportionate to being successful. Some great quotes by him related to this. “If you have to run with people who are faster than you, you need to look for the right ways to optimise the skills you do have”. “If you are failing to plan, you are planning to fail”.

# The power of dreams. The example of Disneyland.

# The To-Do Lists. The explanation he gave why people should not follow the Covey’s four quadrant To-DO List way.

Related links

Pausch's Last Lecture-New York Times

Pausch Inspired Many to Live With Wonder

Review of Time Management Lecture-Oprah

Randy Pausch's Last Words are not Easy Ones to Live By

Making Every Lecture Your Last