RIP Arthur C. Clarke

Matthew Hoy
By Matthew Hoy on March 19, 2008

The last of the big three of science fiction died yesterday. Like Isaac Asimov and Robert Heinlein before him, Arthur C. Clarke shuffled off this mortal coil after 90 years.

I read many of Clarke's books in high school and college. Like many young boys, I started off with Heinlein in elementary and middle school. Next was Asimov. And finally, Clarke.

Clarke's "Childhood's End" was the first book that I ever read that, after finishing it, left me with the literary equivalent of the heebie-jeebies. I loved "Rendezvous with Rama," "2001," "2010," and "2061." The last book of Clarke's I read was "The Trigger" which was co-authoredwith Michael Kube-McDowell. Clarke got some flak from some reviewers for going political with that book, but I found it an interesting thought exercise of what the world would look like if, suddenly, explosives-based technology became obsolete. (No guns, no mortars, no missiles, etc.) A military re-trained to use swords, quarterstaffs and bows and arrows was unexpected to say the least.

Clarke's contributions to science, sans fiction, I did not learn of until I was working as a reporter at the Lompoc Record. There, in 1995, I received a copy of Clarke's 1945 article detailing an idea for geosynchronous telecommunications satellites from a local reader and was encouraged to do an article marking the 50 years since. Sadly, that wasn't the sort of thing that one could do at a small paper focused on local news. Yes, I covered Vandenberg AFB and the space program, but the satellites launched from Vandenberg went into polar orbit, not geosynchronus. I didn't write an article, but I had a newfound respect for that old guy whose books I had read in high school.

Clarke will be missed.


Why, one must ask, was the suit against Biden's student debt wipe “inevitable”?

Was it because the Biden admin is in flagrant violation of the law, and because *everyone* in America knows it?

Not in Waldman’s view, apparently. | @charlescwcooke

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March 2008



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