One small step…

We all get caught up in our day-to-day lives  We’re stressed, under pressure, running around to meet deadlines. Sometimes it’s not a bad idea to sit back and take a breath.

I had an opportunity yesterday to do just that on what was an incredibly busy day – probably the most busy day of the year so far.

The Irish business launch of Windows Vista, 2007 Microsoft Office and Exchange 2007 took place at Croke Park in Dublin yesterday.  Obviously from a professional perspective it represented the culmination of an incredibly intense period of planning and preparation. That’s before you throw in media and community activities around the event.

The keynote speaker for the launch was Neil Amstrong, the first man to walk on the surface of the moon.

Given that I have never been one to get overly excited about space travel, rockets, magnetic fields, solar flares or turbines, I doubted it would have an impact on me - but it did.

Standing and listening to him talk with a group of 10 and 11 year old school kids in private (this wasn’t a PR stunt) I was blown away by his life experiences.  Seeing his achievements through the excitement and wonder of the kids had a major impact on me. 

When you stop and think about what they achieved – at a time when their only computer had 4K memory – it’s a staggering tale of bravery, intelligence and ingenuity.

It made me stop and think.  Now that’s not a bad thing to do once in a time. 

Then it was back to work…. 


5 thoughts on “One small step…

  1. “A staggering tale of bravery, intelligence and ingenuity” Now that almost sounds like the story of my life. Excpet for the bravery, then. And perhaps the intelligence also. Well, okay, and the ingenuity… But the rest!

  2. armstrong wasn’t a pr stunt? pull the other one, it plays jingle bells.

    driving in to work yesterday morning and what was ont he news? ms vista launch. and what was the story? the first man on the moon was along to say a few words.

  3. Hey FMK,

    If you re-read the post you’ll see that I was referring to the kids’ session with him. That was a private meeting.

    Mr. Armstrong doesn’t actually do any media engagements, including non-promotional interviews, he doesn’t do PR photography – you’re not allowed to release any photos at all. [The only photo that made the newspapers was taken by one of the newspaper photographers who snapped him getting out of his car.]

    He was of course there as the keynote speaker because you know people will want to hear him talk. And having someone like that creates excitement at your launch – so there’s PR value in that – that makes a lot of sense.

    And he was excellent by the way.

    As Ripley would say, believe it or believe it not….

  4. Seeing things through a child’s perspective is often profound, and I agree that we need to stop and smell the roses once in a while, reflect on things around us and view the world from a different angle.

    A child’s perspective is fresh, untainted by prejudice, and often way outside of the box. Many a lesson to be learnt by us adults from the small people around us.

    Neil Armstrong… great man, great deeds, incredible piece of history made through him.

    That’s what the children want to be, history makers in their own way, not a bad thing to aspire to really, come on big people let’s raise our sights!!

  5. i am actually wondering about the appropriateness of involving an apollo astronaut in the launch of a windows product.

    the whole project was rather prone to blowing up or breaking down (apollo 1 exploded on the launch pad, killing all onboard, when they hit the start button, apollo 13 would’t have made it home if the crew hadn’t hacked something together with duct tape and some sticky-back plastic a la blue peter. most of the other missions involved atleast some hitch or other (listen to armstrong’s landing and pay attention to the alarms going off in the background just before touchdown)). god, could you imagine what would have happened if windows powered the space programme …

    and, of course, after spending all that money on all that wonderful technology, what do we get in payback? a guy playing golf on the lunar surface – says it all about windows really, doesn’t it? you spend squillions and squillions on something really exciting and adventurous and the most some people get out of it is the ability to play solitaire.


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