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Unscheduled visit to a game reserve


My first romantic kiss
W Daniel Hillis Scientist
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It was also fun for me because I discovered girls then. And that age I had like my first kiss with a girl, we played a game called 'True, Dare, Kiss or Promise' where you got to choose either to answer a question truthfully, a dare to do anything somebody dared you to do, or a kiss was to kiss someone. And we would play this by passing notes during class. And somehow I managed to... I had to trade all my losses for that I would have a 30 second kiss of Mary Flanagan who I was very...

And Mary Flanagan, this was all brokered by Mary Flanagan's best friend, Glenda Porter, and so it was all arranged that I was going to go and kiss her in the chemistry lab, with Glenda Porter of course had to be the witness. That I was actually going to kiss her. And so I kissed Mary Flanagan in the chemistry lab, my first... My first romantic kiss. And Glenda Porter witnessing it. I don't think it lasted 30 seconds but... Years and years later when the internet came out, I got contacted by Mary Flanagan who also remembered the incident. And she was married and had kids, and I was married and had kids. But it was fun that we each remembered our first kiss.

W Daniel Hillis (b. 1956) is an American inventor, scientist, author and engineer. While doing his doctoral work at MIT under artificial intelligence pioneer, Marvin Minsky, he invented the concept of parallel computers, that is now the basis for most supercomputers. He also co-founded the famous parallel computing company, Thinking Machines, in 1983 which marked a new era in computing. In 1996, Hillis left MIT for California, where he spent time leading Disney’s Imagineers. He developed new technologies and business strategies for Disney's theme parks, television, motion pictures, Internet and consumer product businesses. More recently, Hillis co-founded an engineering and design company, Applied Minds, and several start-ups, among them Applied Proteomics in San Diego, MetaWeb Technologies (acquired by Google) in San Francisco, and his current passion, Applied Invention in Cambridge, MA, which 'partners with clients to create innovative products and services'. He holds over 100 US patents, covering parallel computers, disk arrays, forgery prevention methods, and various electronic and mechanical devices (including a 10,000-year mechanical clock), and has recently moved into working on problems in medicine. In recognition of his work Hillis has won many awards, including the Dan David Prize.

Listeners: Christopher Sykes George Dyson

Christopher Sykes is an independent documentary producer who has made a number of films about science and scientists for BBC TV, Channel Four, and PBS.

Tags: kiss, memory, romance, game, dare

Duration: 1 minute, 52 seconds

Date story recorded: October 2016

Date story went live: 08 August 2017