Thinking about Jim Gray (again)

Yesterday I wrote “Thinking about Jim Gray” because I had been thinking about him on and off for most of the week. It looked like the search was over, and I wanted to say something.
Today I find myself unable to stop thinking about him. It’s partly because I’ve been working on updating the TP book, and that keeps him in my thoughts because of his relationship to the book, but it’s also because updating the book involves a lot of tedious work, and my mind tends to wander off.
So much is out there about him. I take breaks from the manuscript and search the news and the blogs. It’s unbelievable. Now the search is continuing through private efforts and searching photos on the Web.
I did go to the Amazon site, and I went through some of the photos. It seemed like searching for the proverbial needle in a haystack, but I guess you never know what might help. Can you imagine if one of us finds him that way? It is already becoming a phenomenon.
A good place to find out what’s going on is the Tenacious search blog. It summarizes what everyone is doing — computer analysis, postering, analyzing cell phone records, shipping records, Web cams, reports from the family, etc.
You can also see some of the photos here in a different format from how they’re presented on Amazon.
Some folks suggest Jim might just have kept on sailing to Mexico or somewhere else across the Pacific…
If we knew what happened to him, that would be one thing. For example, I do not want to write in the past tense, not yet. Although the news isn’t good, there is still hope.
I guess what mainly strikes me is the huge amount of interest. Everyone who works with him says what a great guy he is, and it’s amazing how much he’s contributed to computer science. Everyone seems to feel about him the way I do — as a friend, but more — someone to really look up to.
As I work on the book I find myself thinking about him and the example he set.
Wherever you are, Jim, I hope you can sense some of what’s going on – and see how you have truly touched so many lives. So many of us thinking about you, and still hoping you are well.

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