Friday, June 19, 2009

Life 3.0 - The webpage lives on!

It was quite a shock to hear about the untimely and implausible passing of Dr. Rajeev Motwani. I cannot claim that he was my mentor, but I did meet him several times, had exchanged many emails with him, had coffee with him on University Avenue, was introduced to several people by him, and also presented once to his team at Stanford. He was always friendly, helpful and insightful. He'll be missed.

Over the past weeks since his passing, the Web has had an uncanny way of bringing him up! First, of course, all the Tweets and disbelief. Then the articles and blog posts. Then, when launching a search transliteration feature, I visited a Kannada website for testing, and his photograph featured on the front page! Searching in my personal email, emails from him surfaced. Saw a reference to Sergey Brin's blogpost at work today!

Visting his Facebook page, there were messages that were as recent as an hour old! Unfortunately, he was gone before he could sign up for his user-friendly URL.

The new Social Net doesn't even require anyone to validate posted messages on their pages - we can keep a conversation going right through his webpage!!

This is a new world, where your public legacy extends even beyond your contributions and accomplishments! Rajeev's Facebook profile, Randy Pausch's "Last Lecture", and Jim Gray's Wikipedia page ("born 1944, lost at sea January 28, 2007") are living entities!

What will your web page say about you when you aren't logging on anymore?
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