Recently the Mega Millions jackpot prompted people to play in droves.  News outlets from all over the world ran with the story because it was the largest jackpot in world history.

It amazes me that when people were interviewed about winning, the best they could come up with was “pay bills”, “travel”, “buy a house”, “start a business”…


Really, people?!?   What will you do with the 90% of the jackpot you have left after that?

Let’s say I was the only winner of $640 mil.  That leaves $220 mil after taxes with the cash option.

If I had to keep it testing-centric, here’s what I’d do:

* Buy a Bay Area bookstore, keep it open 24 hours for testers who need books faster than Amazon can deliver. Coffee would be .25 a cup.

* Host a testing conference dedicated to hands-on testing skills and tools — no vendors, sponsors, or fees.  Begin at 10:30 am each day, end when there’s no one left standing. Food and wireless would be available constantly at no charge. Speakers would include people from other disciplines like physics and astronomy — NO motivational speakers.

* Hire my favorite consultants and pay all of their expenses for a year as they help me solve eBay’s top testing challenges.

* Shoot a pilot for a reality show about testing for a start-up company willing to play along.

* Host a nationwide testing competition and broadcast it live as James and I do play-by-play and color commentary.

* Host non-competitive testing *exhibitions* with a mandate that it solve specific problems for people in the audience (chosen well in advance of the show).

* Buy a license of each major tool and post recordings of what they ACTUALLY do with simple testing challenges performed by real testers.

* Start a testing “Smithsonian” with a special section devoted to those in the 1960′s who were trying to solve the same testing problems we have today.

* Create a syndicated daily call-in radio show for testers, hosted by Ben Yaroch.

* Create a testing channel on cable, with shows about testing in science, philosophy, and sociology.

* Hire Ken Burns to do a documentary series about software (with emails from famous testers, read by Morgan Freeman).

Now, what would YOU do with the 90% I would have left after all of that?