Wednesday, 19 March 2008

Arthur C. Clarke Dies At 90

Arthur C. Clarke Dies At 90 - Sir Arthur C. Clarke, who peered into the heavens with a homemade telescope as a boy and grew up to become a visionary titan of science fiction best-known for collaborating with director Stanley Kubrick in writing the landmark film "2001: A Space Odyssey," has died. He was 90.The British-born Clarke, who lived in Colombo, Sri Lanka, for decades, died early Wednesday after experiencing breathing problems, an aide, Rohan De Silva, told the Associated Press.

Clarke, a former farm boy who was knighted for his contributions to literature, wrote more than 80 fiction and nonfiction books (some in collaboration) and more than 100 short stories -- as well as hundreds of articles and essays.

Among his best-known science-fiction novels are "Childhood's End," "Rendezvous With Rama," "Imperial Earth" and, most famously, "2001: A Space Odyssey."

"It's better to be recognized for one thing, especially something of which I'm quite proud, than not to be recognized at all," Clarke told The Times in 1982.

Although he never intended to write a sequel to "2001," he wrote three: "2010: Odyssey Two," "2061: Odyssey Three" and "3001: The Final Odyssey."

Clarke, who was named a Grand Master by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America in 1986, won innumerable international awards for his fiction and scientific writing.

"Rendezvous with Rama," his 1973 novel about a space probe sent to explore an enormous celestial object speeding through the solar system that turns out to be a mysterious alien spacecraft, was one of Clarke's greatest critical successes. It won the prestigious Nebula, Hugo and John W. Campbell awards for best novel, as well as the British Science Fiction Associate Award, the Locus Award and the Jupiter Award.

Clarke was not only known as one of the 20th century's most prolific science-fiction writers but one of the best-grounded scientifically, with a remarkable record of foreseeing future technologies.

Indeed, he was known as "the godfather of the telecommunications satellite."

A radar pioneer in the Royal Air Force during World War II, Clarke wrote a 1945 article in Wireless World magazine in which he outlined a worldwide communications network based on fixed satellites orbiting Earth at an altitude of 22,300 miles -- an orbital area now often referred to as the Clarke Orbit.

Clarke's seminal article, for which he received $40, was published two decades before Syncom II became the world's first communications satellite put into geosynchronous orbit in 1963.

For pioneering the concept of communications satellites, Clarke received a number of honors, including the 1982 Marconi International Fellowship and the Charles A. Lindbergh Award.

Deemed a scientific visionary, Clarke also foretold an array of technological notions in his works such as space stations, moon landings using a mother ship and a landing pod, cellular phones and the Internet.

"Nobody has done more in the way of enlightened prediction," science fiction author Isaac Asimov once wrote.

"I'd say he was the major hard science fiction writer -- that is the writer of science fiction that is scientifically scrupulous -- in the second half of the 20th century," UC Irvine physics professor Gregory Benford, an award-winning science fiction author who collaborated with Clarke on the 1990 science-fiction novel "Beyond the Fall of Night," told The Times in 2005.

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THE RICHES - Season 2

THE RICHES - Season 2 - THE RICHES is back tonight with a whole new season full of surprises. And needless to say, it’s a Must-Watch.

I was able to take an early look at the first four episodes and let me tell you, as much as season 1 was great, season 2 is shaping up to be as good if not better.

During every episode, you will be on the edge of your seat wondering “will they or won’t they be found out?”

Wayne Malloy (Eddie Izzard) gets more and more involved in his “job” and believes that this is the way to get his family back together and guarantee their future. Wayne is such a well written and well portrayed character, it’s hard not to be rooting for him. I think the reason he is so appealing to the audience is because he is really smart and can get out of situations we wish we could get out of with so much class. In season 2, we get to see more of his ingenious ways to get in and out of trouble. Needless to say Eddie Izzard is brilliant.

Dahlia Malloy (Minnie Driver) this season is becoming more independent from Wayne. She tries to find her own path in her own clumsy way. She really tries to change and makes things better for her and her family the only way she knows how. And on the way, makes some interesting decisions, to say the least. It will be interesting to find out how her relationship with Wayne ends up at the end of the season.

The children this season all go their own way as well. In fact it seems that in general season 2 of The Riches is about everybody making their own decisions about the way they would like to live, separate from the family unit.

Di Di (Shannon Woodward) finds herself liking her new life more and more, which makes it hard for her to accept.

Cael (Noel Fisher) is the only one in the family who has a hard time adapting to this new lifestyle, which we already saw in season 1. At the beginning of season 2, Cael starts resenting their new life more and more and wants to go back to being a traveller.

Sam (Aidan Mitchell) is the only one that still sort of follows Wayne and Dahlia, mostly because he is too young at this point to go his own way.

Season 2 of The Riches opens right where we left off season 1, in the heat of the action. The next four episodes keep on building as things get crazier and crazier and I cannot wait to see the last three episodes (this season has a total of seven episodes). They really put a lot of thought and effort in season 2 and so far it’s paying off. They were able to keep me excited and wanting for more. You need to watch this new season of The Riches, I promise, you won’t be disappointed.

Finally, if you didn’t watch season 1, but want to jump on board, please do. The season recap at the beginning of the first episode of season 2 is enough to get you up to date on everything that happened previously. And get ready for a crazy ride with The Malloys.

Don’t forget to watch THE RICHES - Season 2 tonight, March 18, at 10pm on FX.

Judy Greer Is Miss Guided

Judy Greer Is Miss Guided - Charming actress Judy Greer is miss guided

“Miss Guided” star Judy Greer stopped by to chat with the ladies of The View in this March 18 video clip.

Video that shows Judy Greer Is Miss Guided.