Today I had the pleasure of speaking to a local breakfast club. Normally my talks are technical in nature and best suited for engineering types. I suspected this crowd had different tastes. So I took to opportunity to wax nostalgic and talk about how the combination of Houston and robotics have given me a career which I have thoroughly enjoyed for over 40 years.
At the breakfast club I was greeted with an engaged and attentive audience which makes public speaking fun. I enjoyed recounting a lifetime of challenges and adventures.
The short version of my talk is that never in my wildest dreams would I have guessed that one day I would travel the world, work in dozens of industries and meet so many fascinating people. When I was youngster in the ’60s doing “Duck and Cover” atomic war drills I never imagined that one day I would work in Russia and China. My Dad went to Europe on August 15, 1944 without a passport. He parachuted in with a bazooka. Yet only 50 years later I when I traveled to Europe to work, my experience was an very different than his.
I credit Isaac Asimov who inspired me with his early science fiction stories about robotics and even coined the term for my job: “roboticist”.
The rest is history, but I would not have missed it for anything.
– Dan Allford