Sci-fi author and futurist Sir Arthur C. Clarke has died at the age of 90 at his home in Sri Lanka. Author of more than 100 books, of which 2001: A Space Odyssey is the most famous, Clarke was also uncannily prescient about space exploration, having predicted the invention of geosynchronous communications satellites more than a decade before the fact.
Tallish, bespectacled, rather big-eared and increasingly thin on top, he tended to be described by his friends as a beaming and highly articulate shambles of a chap, a man to whom convention meant very little. Yet his mind was like a razor.
And, for your contemplation, here are Clarke’s Three Laws of scientific discovery, excerpted from The New York Times:
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.