Dr. Joan Bushwell's Chimpanzee Refuge

Happy Birthday Sir Arthur

Arthur C. Clarke is 90 today. He has three wishes:

Science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke listed three wishes on his 90th birthday Sunday: for the world to embrace cleaner energy resources, for a lasting peace in his adopted home, Sri Lanka, and for evidence of extraterrestrial beings.

Like many of my generation I first became familiar with his works via his collaboration with Stanley Kubrick on the film 2001: A Space Odyssey. It remains one of my favorite movies (and books). ACC shares this birthday with Ludwig van Beethoven, who also shared a collaboration of sorts with Kubrick via A Clockwork Orange.


  1. #1 Doc Bushwell
    December 16, 2007

    Also noteworthy are Clarke’s laws of prediction from “Hazards of Prophecy: The Failure of Imagination” in Profiles of the Future.

    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.

    4. (added in 1999) “For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert.”

  2. #2 SDC
    December 16, 2007

    “For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert.”

    now that’s beautiful (and true).

    I wished ACC happy b-day on some website I can’t remember the URL now, a long with a cast of thousands of fan-boys and girls.

    Childhood’s End, Rama, 2001, all classics to be sure.

  3. #3 Warren
    December 17, 2007

    #4: Wisdom in world leadership.

    (Actually, the first two wishes telescope into this one, with one to spare!)

  4. #4 Dave Briggs
    December 18, 2007

    Arthur C. Clarke is 90 today. He has three wishes:

    Happy Birthday Arthur! Here’s hoping you get to see all your wishes come true!
    Dave Briggs :~)

  5. #5 Pieter B
    December 22, 2007

    The obvious implication of Rule #3 is that if a technology is distinguishable from magic, it is insufficiently advanced.

    Happy Birthday, Sir Arthur, and may your every wish be granted.

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