American actor Michael J. Fox attended VMware’s annual VMworld 2021 conference and talked about his struggle with Parkinson’s disease, in which he contracted at the height of his career, at the age of 29, and because of which he was forced to retire from gaming. In Fox’s first public appearance since November 2020, when his book No Time Like the Future was published, he revealed in a conversation with VMware VP of Marketing Carol Carpenter that he is not running a computer because he is unable to Type or use a touch screen because of the disease, and voice recognition technology is not mature and accurate enough. “A breakthrough is still needed that will allow the computer to read our thoughts,” Fox added with a smile.
Fox describes the first signs of Parkinson’s in his body: “I started to feel my arm and shoulder, I went to a neurologist, he did tests on me and then he told me I had ten more years to live and it just stunned me. I did not know what to think as he explained that the disease was progressive and not “You can tell how fast it will get worse. I remain optimistic, I choose to be happy, to be involved and help others cope. Exercise is important, it is important to move a lot and not give in to the disease, not to go to this dark place.”
Fox volunteered to help cure Parkinson’s disease and in 2000 founded the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Disease Research, which works to promote awareness of the disease and the means to cure it. On the conference stage, Fox said that “today there is a focus on finding a way to identify an indicator that we can define and isolate and can predict the disease, for example in the area of finding the basis for the virus.
“I do not understand science or business but I understand that more money needs to be raised. Some of the big donors are Parkinson’s patients who are also seeking treatment for themselves, fighting paralysis or improving their lives and experiences. It is important that each patient reports his or her disease characteristics so that we can find patterns, such as the pattern of olfactory loss found in Corona patients. “
The motto of the conference was “Imagine” and it also serves as inspiration for Michael J. Fox. “I think change is possible in every area, and theoretically it is possible to change – and change big,” he said.