Here is the link to Arthur C. Clarkes annual message to the world from Columbo, Sri Lanka:
Here is some of what he has to say with my comments:
Friends, Earthlings, ETs — lend me your sensory organs!
TO THE MOON: Awesome beginning! It sounds like something William Shakespeare would say! And its very politically correct in that it doesn’t assume what sensory organs you might have.
I send you greetings and good wishes at the beginning of another year. I’ll be celebrating (?) my 90th birthday in December — a few weeks after the Space Age completes its first half century.
TTM: He’s older than the space age! And what’s this about the Space Age completing half a century?
When the late and unlamented Soviet Union launched Sputnik 1 on 4 October 1957, it took only about five minutes for the world to realise what had happened. And although I had been writing and speaking about space travel for years, the moment is still frozen in my own memory: I was in Barcelona attending the 8th International Astronautical Congress. We had retired to our hotel rooms after a busy day of presentations when the news broke — I was awakened by reporters seeking comments on the Soviet feat. Our theories and speculations had suddenly become reality!
TTM > 10/4/07? Why that’s next week! The Space Age is 50 years old next week 🙂 Do we have to work that day? Probably so in the USA 😦
Notwithstanding the remarkable accomplishments during the past 50 years, I believe that the Golden Age of space travel is still ahead of us. Before the current decade is out, fee-paying passengers will be experiencing sub-orbital flights aboard privately funded passenger vehicles, built by a new generation of engineer-entrepreneurs with an unstoppable passion for space (I’m hoping I could still make such a journey myself). And over the next 50 years, thousands of people will gain access to the orbital realm — and then, to the Moon and beyond.
TTM> I hope Arthur reaches his goal of a sub-orbital space flight!
During 2006, I followed with interest the emergence of this new breed of ‘Citizen Astronauts’ and private space enterprise. I am very encouraged by the wide-spread acceptance of the Space Elevator, which can make space transport cheap and affordable to ordinary people. This daring engineering concept, which I popularised in The Fountains of Paradise (1978), is now taken very seriously, with space agencies and entrepreneurs investing money and effort in developing prototypes. A dozen of these parties competed for the NASA-sponsored, US$ 150,000 X Prize Cup which took place in October 2006 at the Las Cruces International Airport, New Mexico.
TTM >> I will have to check out that book- The Fountains of Paradise.
I’m still missing and mourning my beloved Chihuahua Pepsi, who left us more than a year ago. I’ve just heard that dogs aren’t allowed in Heaven, so I’m not going there.
I have just heard that dogs *ARE* allowed to go to heaven and that’s where Pepsi is going!
I was particularly glad to find a co-author to complete my last novel, The Last Theorem, which remained half-written for a couple of years. I had mapped out the entire story, but then found I didn’t have the energy to work on the balance text. Accomplished American writer Frederik Pohl has now taken up the challenge. Meanwhile, co-author Stephen Baxter has completed First-born, the third novel in our collaborative Time Odyssey series, to be published in 2007.
>> I’ll have to check out those books too!
The entire EGOgram is worth reading. May God bless Arthur C. Clarke. I saw him lecture at the University of Kansas twenty years ago!