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Writer Arthur C Clarke dies at 90

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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/7304004.stm

British science fiction writer Sir Arthur C Clarke has died in Sri Lanka at the age of 90. Born in Somerset, he came to fame in 1968 when a short story The Sentinel was made into the film 2001: A Space Odyssey by director Stanley Kubrick.

Once called "the first dweller in the electronic cottage", his vision of future space travel and computing captured the popular imagination.

A close aide said he died after a cardio-respiratory attack.

'Vision'

Sir Arthur's vivid - and detailed - descriptions of space shuttles, super-computers and rapid communications systems were enjoyed by millions of readers around the world.

He was the author of more than 100 fiction and non-fiction books, and his writings are credited by many observers with giving science fiction a human and practical face.

In the 1940s Clarke maintained man would reach the moon by the year 2000, an idea dismissed at the time.

A farmer's son, he was educated at Huish's Grammar School in Taunton before joining the civil service.

During World War II, Clarke volunteered for the Royal Air Force, where he worked in the then highly-secretive development of radar.

British astronomer, Sir Patrick Moore, had known Sir Arthur since they met as teenagers at the British Interplanetary Society.

"He was ahead of his time in so many ways," Sir Patrick said.

"Quite apart from artificial satellites there were other things too. A great science fiction writer, a very good scientist, a great prophet and a very dear friend, I'm very, very sad that he's gone."

He paid tribute to his friend, remembering him as "a very sincere person" with "a strong sense of humour".

Future thinker

George Whitesides, the executive director of the National Space Society, on which Sir Arthur served on the board of governors, said his enthusiasm "was what I think made him so popular in many ways".

"He was always thinking about what could come next but also about how life could be improved in the future.

"It's a vision that I think we could use more of today."

After a failed marriage Sir Arthur moved to Sri Lanka, then called Ceylon, in 1956, where he lived with a business partner and his family, and pursued his interest in scuba-diving.

His status as the grand old man of science fiction was threatened when, in 1998, allegations of child abuse, which he strenuously denied, caused the confirmation of a knighthood to be delayed.

Although cleared by an investigation, Sir Arthur's unconventional lifestyle continued to cause some raised eyebrows.

From 1995, the author was largely confined to a wheelchair, suffering from post-polio syndrome.

I love his books.

I am putting myself to the fullest possible use, which is all I think that any conscious entity can ever hope to do.

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:(This is really sad. I liked the RAMA series. Infact, I still have the PC game 'RAMA'

[sIGPIC][/sIGPIC]

"Well, Toutousai...don't you think it's a pity for Tessaiga? All Inuyasha can do is wave about a sword with all his strength...it's the same whether it's a famous sword or a log."

-Sesshoumaru

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