Arthur C. Clarke, science fiction author, predictor of the future, and inspirer of at least one little kid from rural Northern California, is dead at age 90.
Although I learned to cringe at some of Clarke’s writing as I grew older, I have very distinct and fond memories of reading “Childhood’s End” and “Rendezvous with Rama.” (Like all such memories, I dread rereading these for fear of losing my even now foggy recollections of the joy these books brought me.)
And then, of course, there are Clarke’s Three Laws:
- 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.
- The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible.
- Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
The first of these laws gives hope to heretics everywhere. The second reminds me of what I should be thinking about in my research. And the third used to be on the front page of MagicQ webpage. Maybe now that they want to sell a product, comparing your product to magic isn’t as popular?