Cary Lu

Isaac Benowitz[hidden]

Cary was a wonderful guy. I have known him as long as I can remember; he and my father first met at CalTech many years ago. I met him only a handful of times, although I communicated with him on-line many times. When I was very interested in computers, Cary was there to explains things to me and discuss whatever I was excited about. He was always so level- headed in the crowd of computer users who were always ready to jump at the newest toys; he was always someone to look up to, as someone who could take things calmly but still be very interested, and came out with very well though-out opinions. One of his greatest qualities was that he was very open-minded and accepting of ideas. In an adult world that was not prepared to accept a young kid like I was, Cary was fully ready to accept me as whatever I wanted to be. If I wanted to be an adult, so be it.

When I lost some of my interest in computers, I found Cary still very interesting to talk to and still very willing to talk to me, whether about computers or something else entirely. He always had an interesting story about something or other; a story to put things in perspective. And he was always involved in such interesting things. I remember hearing about Cary's work at CalTech involving how the eye looks at things. And about how he had worked for PBS and Nova, and written The Apple Macintosh Book, and done so many other neat things. I pity the people who only knew Cary's computer side. There are likely people who have devoted their entire lives to computers to try to gain Cary's level of expertise, yet that was only one of the many things in which Cary was well-versed.

Whenever I had a question for him about computers or radios or ergonomics or really anything, he always had an answer or was resourceful enough to dig up something useful. He was rarely one to respond empty-handed. He was always so full of ideas. I spoke to him about two weeks ago; even then, in the hospital, he was still so quintessentially, well, himself. Perceptive, still putting so much though into everything he said; so full of ideas. Many people may remember Cary for his perceptive books and columns in the computer world. Others may remember him for his work at CalTech, or with public broadcasting, or for his expertise with stereos and televisions and music. I will miss the man who first accepted me as an adult, the man who always had time to answer my questions on anything, the man who encouraged my interest in so many things and my exploration down so many paths. For that, he is at the core of who I am now and of what I hope to become, and I will remember him.