Author(s): Randy Pausch; Jeffrey Zaslow
"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."-Randy Pausch A lot of professors give talks titled "The Last Lecture." Professors are asked to consider their demise and to ruminate on what matters most to them. And while they speak, audiences can't help but mull the same question: What wisdom would we impart to the world if we knew it was our last chance? If we had to vanish tomorrow, what would we want as our legacy? When Randy Pausch, a computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon, was asked to give such a lecture, he didn't have to imagine it as his last, since he had recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer. But the lecture he gave-"Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams"-wasn't about dying. It was about the importance of overcoming obstacles, of enabling the dreams of others, of seizing every moment (because "time is all you have ... and you may find one day that you have less than you think"). It was a summation of everything Randy had come to believe. It was about living. In this book, Randy Pausch has combined the humor, inspiration, and intelligence that made his lecture such a phenomenon and given it an indelible form. It is a book that will be shared for generations to come.
Pausch's last lecture arrives in the form of a book which holds all the potency of his original talk ... But this book is something concrete - [Randy's] heart is in there, and it is the loveliest of gifts. - SUNDAY TELEGRAPH Young people love him, old people love him, academics love him, parents love him, cancer patients love him. - COURIER-MAIL the hottest book in the country now. - THE AGE An inspiration to millions - GOOD READING A final message [which] explores the deeper lessons of life. - THE EXAMINER
Randy Pausch was a professor of Computer Science, Human Computer Interaction, and Design at Carnegie Mellon University. From 1988 to 1997, he taught at the University of Virginia. An award-winning teacher and researcher, he worked with Adobe, Google, Electronic Arts (EA), and Walt Disney Imagineering, and pioneered the Alice project.