19th March 2008 – Arthur C Clarke

Arthur C. Clarke died today aged 90. He had a good run.

One can guess his influence on me by checking out my bookshelf:

  • Islands in the Sky – 1952
  • Prelude to Space – 1953
  • The Other Side of the Sky – 1961
  • Profiles of the Future – 1962
  • Glide Path – 1963
  • Imperial Earth – 1975
  • The Fountains of Paradise – 1979
  • 2010: Odyssey Two – 1982
  • 2061: Odyssey Three – 1987
  • The Songs of Distant Earth – 1986
  • Tales from Planet Earth – 1989

I have read several other works by Clarke including Childhood’s End, Rendezvous with Rama, a couple of short story collections and some short stories in other anthologies.

And the of course we have Clarke’s Three Laws (every person of influence must have at least three laws).

  1. When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong.
  2. The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible.
  3. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.

Number three being my favorite.

Here are links to sites on my RSS feed mentioning Clarke’s death:

The Bad Astronomer

Pharyngula

BBC News

“Sir Arthur has left written instructions that his funeral be strictly secular,” his secretary, Nalaka Gunawardene, was quoted as saying by news agency AFP.
She said the author had requested “absolutely no religious rites of any kind”.

Way to go Arthur!

The Register

Ars Technica

Evolving Thoughts

MSNBC

NASA

Update – more links:

Universe Today

More from Pharyngula

New Scientist

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