Max Gail: Online Community Pioneer

My dad died on November 2nd 1996. On his birthday on November 16th, I was in Vegas on Microsoft’s dime to show ChiliReports. And I think that year (it might have been the next) we sponsored the Chili for Children Cookoff. 

We didn’t know what we were doing. Hai was there, Chris was there. We were in an arena where the cookoff was going on, and at some point our company name hit the screen. Felt great, even though we paid for it (silly spend). 
But there was a party–a backstage-if-you’re-a-sponsor party. They had hired a bunch of has-been actors (better has-been than never-was) and we chatted with a few of them, including the weird guy from Mork and Mindy. 
And then I saw Wojo. Wojo wasn’t paid to be there. He was there to tell everybody he could talk to about his vision for online and offline communities. He talked my ear off. And he was right. 
But he was too early. 
Max Gail–Wojciehowicz from Barney Miller–is a visionary. Or was. I have no idea what happened with his ideas. We talked on the phone a few times, and I really believed in him. But I didn’t even know what I was doing for us, much less for Max. 
Tonight I remember this for some reason. And I looked him up, and he’s still kicking, so I’m thinking I’d like to fly out to LA and buy him a beer, or mocha if that works. 
Max Gail–Internet Pioneer. Wikipedia missed it. 

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