What would you say if you knew you were going to die and had a chance to sum up everything that was most important to you?
That's the hypothetical question posed to the annual speaker of a lecture series commonly known as "The Last Lecture." But for Randy Pausch, the charismatic young professor of computer science at Carnegie Mellon University, the question wasn't hypothetical.
The 47-year-old father of three small children had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer -- and given six months to live.
Friends and colleagues flew in from all around the country to attend his last lecture. And -- almost as an afterthought -- the lecture was videotaped and put on the Internet for the few people who couldn't get there that day.
That was all it took.
Somehow amid the vast clamor of the Web and the bling-bling of million-dollar budgets, savvy marketing campaigns and millions of strange and bizarre videos, the voice of one earnest professor standing at a podium and talking about his childhood dreams cut through the noise.
The lecture was so uplifting, so funny, so inspirational that it went viral. So far, 10 million people have downloaded it.
Diane Sawyer talks to MIT Professor Randy Pausch seven months after he gave his famous "Last Lecture". Click here to read the rest of the story at ABC News.
Randy Pausch has also published a book, aptly titled The Last Lecture.
Haven't seen the video of his lecture? You should. Check out a shortened version here:
Read more on Randy Pausch from HuffPost blogger Jesse Kornblum here.