Tuesday, January 09, 2007

A Message From Beyond

Born to immigrant parents from Japan, Iwao Takamoto and his family spent time in the Manzanar internment camp after the attack at Pearl Harbor. He learned the art of illustration from other internees and went on to be best known for his character, Scooby-Doo.

For more than 60 years he worked for Disney and Hanna-Barbera, too. He was involved with creating Cinderella, Peter Pan, Lady and the Tramp, 101 Dalmatians, The Jetsons and The Flintstones.

Scooby-Doo was inspired after Takamoto had a conversation with a Great Dane breeder and the Frank Sinatra song, 'Strangers in the Night'.

The breeder " showed me some pictures and talked about the important points of a Great Dane, like a straight back, straight legs, small chin and such", Takamoto said recently at Cartoon Network Studios. "I decided to go the opposite and gave him a humpback, bowed legs, big chin and such. Even his color is wrong".

He also created Astro from The Jetsons.

He passed away today at the age of 81. He gave hours of enjoyment to generations.

A life well done.

David Eagleman of Houston has created a service by the name of Deathswitch. This service guarantees critical personal information will survive, according to Eagleman. When subscribers to this on-line service die, the company sends an e-mail to recipients provided by the subscriber. This critical information could be anything from computer passwords, a love note, or the final words of an argument.

The service costs $19.95 a year and ceases when the subscriber dies. Deathswitch provides an automated system that leads subscribers to type in their password on a regular schedule so that the service knows the person is still alive. A vacation mode is an option if a person will be away and a friend's e-mail address can be used as a back-up.

Messages sent upon death can include documents, videos and images.

Eagleman is 35 years old and an assistant professor of neuroscience and psychiatry at Baylor College of Medicine. He is quite the renaissance man, as he also buys and restores old houses and has written three science books and a collection of short stories.



srp said...

That last topic is just flat wierd!!! I don't know about keeping that kind of information on the internet... perhaps a safety deposit box or a will?

Anonymous said...

I just loved Astro. Loved the Jetsons. I never connected Astro and Scooby-Doo though. The old style,hand drawn animation was just plain amazing.

I've often thought I should give my password to a select person to delete my stuff after I croak, not pass my stuff on. I don't know exactly how to think about Deathswitch.

Beverly said...

I was saddened to learn of this cartoonist's death. I think I liked his Charlotte's Web even better than the new movie.