Scobleizer Weblog

Daily Permalink Thursday, November 27, 2003

Oh, and I'm very thankful that my son Patrick is here with me today attempting to teach me how to duel with his Yu-Gi-Oh! cards. I totally don't get it. I am old and useless, as Patrick says! OK, it's Turkey time. Have a great day.

My wife, on the other hand, says "it's just a PR event!" Well, of course it is, but I still think it's a courageous PR event -- and knowing just how much planning goes into something like this, I think it's amazing word didn't leak out. Iraq is, in many ways, still very dangerous territory. It's never safe for a US President to be out and around. Heck, this month's anniversary of JFK's assassination proves that point.

You know, I can't imagine a more courageous thing for a US President to do than going to visit Iraq on this Thanksgiving.

Dave Winer thanks me for being his friend. That's an honor sir! Dave gave me a chance back when very few people did. I'll never forget that. In the US it's Thanksgiving. A day to think about all that you have to be thankful for.

Some other people and things I am thankful for:

My mom and dad. If it weren't for them having a little adult fun in the spring of 1964 I wouldn't have been here.

To Ampex and a sucky economy in 1970, when my dad graduated from Rutgers. If it wasn't for Ampex hiring my dad, I would not have been in Silicon Valley during one of the most important economic expansions of all time. I saw the birth of dozens of important companies. Apple. Tandem. Seagate. Borland. Atari. eBay. Google. Netscape. And that's just the tip of the iceberg. My life has watched Silicon Valley turn from a sleepy farming community (when I was a kid much of the valley just making its final turn from agriculture to technology industry powerhouse. If you ever visit Apple computer's headquarters, remember the joy of a bunch of kids who'd run through the orchards, stealing Apricots, and generally having a great time).

My brothers. For getting in trouble with me when I was a kid, and supporting me when we're older.

Dana Doss, the guy who hired me at LZ Premiums. He was a pain in the ass to work for at times, but he and his dad taught me things from how a business's books work, to how to do an advertisment that actually got people to come in the store, to how to deliver a refrigerator (it's not as easy as it might look), and bought me in contact with tons of great people (one of my former customers said hi at the PDC).

Steve Wozniak. For giving me $40,000 worth of Macs for our journalism department. (We had been producing a broadsheet newspaper on a single Mac Plus. Everyone with a modern computer should try THAT sometime. There's no greater joy than scrolling around a page in Pagemaker on a small screen and on a machine that was very slow). I owe a lot in my career back to that day when Steve got excited about my proposal to modernize our journalism department.

Rich Cameron. My journalism instructor who saw the power of personal computers long before most of his peers did. Taught me about Hypercard. Pagemaker. And was the first to introduce me to Microsoft software. Oh, and taught me to be a journalist. We survived the 1989 earthquake together. Those 72 hours we spent together (he couldn't go home cause all the roads to his house were closed) are among the most memorable moments in my life.

Jim Fawcette. He took a chance on me out of college. He took me to the first NT Developer's Conference and elbowed me when Bill Gates announced Cairo and Chicago. Cairo, in some ways, turned into Longhorn. Who would have known 10 years ago where my life's journey would have taken me?

Olivier Garbe. He saw me speak at a user group and gave me a $10,000 raise to come and work for Winnov. He took me to China. Germany. And gave me an insider's view of Silicon Valley entrepreneurship that I would never have gotten if I had remained in the publishing industry. He also let me explore evangelism and marketing, which led to a sale of several thousand video capture cards to Microsoft (and my interest in NetMeeting, which led to a book and a website that taught me the power of groups of people who have common interests).

Don Box. He taught me that it's important to do your market research and it's important to constantly battle to make your product better instead of letting it sink into mediocrity. Plus, I almost went to work for him, and those interviews made me think about my career in ways I hadn't yet done.

Dave Winer. He showed me how a single voice on the Web could make things happen. No need for multi-million-dollar advertising budgets. One guy, working on a dream, could get people to adopt new technology in ways that existing corporations and standards bodies couldn't.

Craig's List. Without that, I wouldn't have found the job at NEC, and I wouldn't have gotten to know Larry Miller, Shelly Greenhalgh, Joe Harris, Paul Brodie, and the others at NEC. Not to mention, I wouldn't have been there as NEC introduced one of the coolest Tablet PCs I've seen.

Vic Gundotra. He bought the first NEC Tablet sold in the United States. Yeah, Bill Gates had one a few days earlier, but Bill needed to fly over to Japan to beat Vic. Vic took a chance on a weblogger who often has negative things to say about his employer. That experiment is only seven months old. Can't wait to expand the experiment even further.

My car wreck two years ago. Taught me life is too short and too impermanent to not have fun!

Jeff Sandquist. I don't always listen to him as much as I should. When I don't, bad things happen. When I do, good things do. There's a lesson there! :-)

My wife, Maryam. She started her life thousands of miles away in Tehran, Iran. I'm glad I told Tena Carter to hire her (and thanks to Tena Carter for hiring her!). That's one hiring recommendation that's worked out very well! :-)

Finally, my readers. Yesterday there were about 3000 or so. That's just amazing to me -- I remember the days when I really did have only 18 readers. That one guy can write a weblog for less than three years and build an audience of many of the smartest and most influential people in the technology is just amazing to me. Dan Gillmor of the San Jose Mercury News often says "my readers are smarter than me." I know just how he feels. Thanks for making my life so much more interesting than it would otherwise be!


November 2003
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
Oct   Dec

Referer Page
Robert Scoble works at Microsoft. Everything here, though, is his personal opinion and is not read or approved before it is posted. No warranties or other guarantees will be offered as to the quality of the opinions or anything else offered here.

Click here to visit the Radio UserLand website.
Subscribe to "The Scobleizer Weblog" in Radio UserLand.
Click to see the XML version of this web page.
Click here to send an email to the editor of this weblog.
© Copyright 2004 Robert Scoble Last updated: 1/3/2004; 3:21:34 AM.