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In memory of Massimo Bergami

In the beginning of 2007, Massimo Bergami passed away because of a common flu, as often happens to those who have his disease. Massimo was dystrophic, but above all, he was a co-operator and a worker of Virtual Coop. He was one of the incorporators of the co-operative and one of the first to be employed. Above all, he was an expert of Access and Visual Basic. He did not despise multimediality and managed to develop Web applications. Virtual Coop dedicates the Progetto Data, which is destined to permit many disabled to work, to him.

When in 1995 I met the president of the Uildm to look for incorporators with competence in information technology for the new co-operative, he gave me a name and a telephone number. It concerned of Massimo Bergami, an affiliate and secretary of that association, a philosopher and a computer expert. After some time, I went to find him at his house. The first impression I had was immediate and precise: I was in front of Yoda the leader of the Jedi in Star Wars. An incompletely developed, lightly deformed due to the underdeveloped musculature, minute body. Lively eyes behind round spectacles with an ultra subtle frame, sitting on an old wheelchair from the moment he was born. He asked me whether I am interested in philosophy, but I cut him short and told him no, I was thinking of only one thing, the cooperative and he seemed interested.

We have never had the opportunity to expand on his interest for philosophy neither later on. He loved and followed oriental philosophies, promoting moderation, wisdom, and above all the control of feelings, also demonstrating a deep sense of justice.

Star Trek was one of his passions. He knew all the series, and empathized with many characters, perhaps because of the profound ethic sense, which pervades the entire saga.

His first job assignment regarded the setup of an Access database, which the brilliantly resolved, so I could boast in I do not know how many conventions.

Afterwards, he always dealt with the donation and transplants of organs website on behalf of Virtual Coop. It is placed on the portal of the Emilia-Romagna region. Then it was the turn of the data entry supported database for the scholarship requests of the province of Bologna.

He started to work on this activity in spring of the 2006. We worked together all summer, nearly always on the phone and visualizing our work online. We were in a hurry, in November we had to present a good work progress in Handimatica, which is an important trade fair manifestation about technological aids for disability. It was particularly difficult to continue. We were missing several competences. We got in touch even two or three times a day, and in the end Massimo managed to present a good product.

During the presentation, I talked above all of him. I realized that as the years passed he became slowly weaker from the effort that he made to breathe.

Just the time to rest, a few days and then we resumed working on his project. By Christmas, we found ourselves still working on the same project.

After a few days he left us with the same light whisper with which he lived.

Maurizio Cocchi

Virtual Coop’s President