Posted 19 March 2008 - 09:33 AM
Writer Arthur C. Clarke Dies at 90
By RAVI NESSMAN
The Associated Press
Tuesday, March 18, 2008; 6:41 PM
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka -- Arthur C. Clarke, a visionary science fiction writer who won worldwide acclaim with more than 100 books on space, science and the future, died Wednesday in his adopted home of Sri Lanka, an aide said. He was 90.
Clarke, who had battled debilitating post-polio syndrome since the 1960s and sometimes used a wheelchair, died at 1:30 a.m. after suffering breathing problems, aide Rohan De Silva said.
Co-author with Stanley Kubrick of Kubrick's film "2001: A Space Odyssey," Clarke was regarded as far more than a science fiction writer.
He was credited with the concept of communications satellites in 1945, decades before they became a reality. Geosynchronous orbits, which keep satellites in a fixed position relative to the ground, are called Clarke orbits.
He joined American broadcaster Walter Cronkite as commentator on the U.S. Apollo moonshots in the late 1960s.
Clarke's non-fiction volumes on space travel and his explorations of the Great Barrier Reef and Indian Ocean earned him respect in the world of science, and in 1976 he became an honorary fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.
But it was his writing that shot him to his greatest fame and that gave him the greatest fulfillment.
"Sometimes I am asked how I would like to be remembered," Clarke said recently. "I have had a diverse career as a writer, underwater explorer and space promoter. Of all these I would like to be remembered as a writer."
From 1950, he began a prolific output of both fiction and non-fiction, sometimes publishing three books in a year. He published his best-selling "3001: The Final Odyssey" when he was 79.
Some of his best-known books are "Childhood's End," 1953; "The City and The Stars," 1956, "The Nine Billion Names of God," 1967; "Rendezvous with Rama," 1973; "Imperial Earth," 1975; and "The Songs of Distant Earth," 1986.
When Clarke and Kubrick got together to develop a movie about space, they used as basic ideas several of Clarke's shorter pieces, including "The Sentinel," written in 1948, and "Encounter in the Dawn." As work progressed on the screenplay, Clarke also wrote a novel of the story. He followed it up with "2010," "2061," and "3001: The Final Odyssey."
In 1989, two decades after the Apollo 11 moon landings, Clarke wrote: "2001 was written in an age which now lies beyond one of the great divides in human history; we are sundered from it forever by the moment when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped out on to the Sea of Tranquility. Now history and fiction have become inexorably intertwined."
Clarke won the Nebula Award of the Science Fiction Writers of America in 1972, 1974 and 1979; the Hugo Award of the World Science Fiction Convention in 1974 and 1980, and in 1986 became Grand Master of the Science Fiction Writers of America. He was awarded the CBE in 1989.
Born in Minehead, western England, on Dec. 16, 1917, the son of a farmer, Arthur Charles Clark became addicted to science-fiction after buying his first copies of the pulp magazine "Amazing Stories" at Woolworth's. He devoured English writers H.G. Wells and Olaf Stapledon and began writing for his school magazine in his teens.
Clarke went to work as a clerk in Her Majesty's Exchequer and Audit Department in London, where he joined the British Interplanetary Society and wrote his first short stories and scientific articles on space travel.
It was not until after the World War II that Clarke received a bachelor of science degree in physics and mathematics from King's College in London.
In the wartime Royal Air Force, he was put in charge of a new radar blind-landing system.
But it was an RAF memo he wrote in 1945 about the future of communications that led him to fame. It was about the possibility of using satellites to revolutionize communications _ an idea whose time had decidedly not come.
Clarke later sent it to a publication called Wireless World, which almost rejected it as too far-fetched.
Clarke married in 1953, and was divorced in 1964. He had no children.
Disabled by post-polio syndrome, the lingering effects of a disease that had paralyzed him for two months in 1959, Clarke rarely left his home in the Indian Ocean island of Sri Lanka.
He moved there in 1956, lured by his interest in marine diving which, he said, was as close as he could get to the weightless feeling of space.
"I'm perfectly operational underwater," he once said.
Clarke was linked by his computer with friends and fans around the world, spending each morning answering e-mails and browsing the Internet.
In an interview with The Associated Press, Clarke said he did not regret having never followed his novels into space, adding that he had arranged to have DNA from strands of his hair sent into orbit.
"One day, some super civilization may encounter this relic from the vanished species and I may exist in another time," he said. "Move over, Stephen King."
Posted 26 March 2008 - 10:17 PM
Posted 27 March 2008 - 12:29 PM
Posted 30 March 2008 - 12:00 PM
The Cambodian-born journalist whose terrifying story of enslavement and his amazing escape from the murderous Khmer Rouge revolutionaries in 1979 became the subject of the Oscar award-winning film "The Killing Fields," died Sunday of pancreatic cancer. He was 65.
Posted 05 April 2008 - 11:39 PM
The article: http://news.yahoo.co..._mo/obit_heston
I personally enjoyed many of his movies. He was truly a great actor.
Posted 08 May 2008 - 12:57 PM
Robbins, who opened his first ice cream shop in 1945 in Glendale, died Monday of complications related to old age at Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage, Calif., said his daughter, Marsha Veit.
With his brother-in-law and partner, Burton Baskin, Robbins displayed a keen sense of fun and a flair for marketing that helped turn some of their frozen treats into cultural touchstones.
When the Dodgers came to Los Angeles in 1958, they were greeted with Baseball Nut, complete with raspberries for the umpires. Lunar Cheesecake was launched the day after man landed on the moon in 1969. At the height of Beatlemania in 1964, a reporter asked Robbins what flavor would salute the Fab Four; Baskin-Robbins had yet to invent one, but Robbins replied, "Uh, Beatle Nut, of course," and had it in stores in five days.
He delighted in inventing new flavors and naming them, including Plum Nuts (plums, vanilla and walnuts), ChaChaCha (cherry chocolate chip), or his personal favorite, Jamoca Almond Fudge. By the time he retired in 1978, the company was selling some 20 million gallons of ice cream a year in more than 2,000 stores around the world.
The son of a dairyman, Robbins grew up scooping cones in his family's Tacoma, Wash., ice cream store for customers who always seemed to be having a good time. He recalled that he often "finished a day's work happy" and wanted that same feeling when he started his own business.
Posted 08 May 2008 - 06:36 PM
Edited by Axman, 08 May 2008 - 06:37 PM.
Posted 27 May 2008 - 05:54 PM
'Laugh-in' comic Dick Martin dies at 86
By Jim Cheng, USA TODAY
Dick Martin was the toothy, clueless one — clueless but supremely confident he was right. With co-host Dan Rowan, Martin steered Laugh-In's ship of fools and changed the course of television. Martin died Saturday at 86 of respiratory failure at a hospital in Santa Monica, Calif.
Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In premiered in 1968 on NBC and was an immediate hit. The variety series captured the spirit of the tumultuous times and brought the counterculture into mainstream living rooms.
Its rapid-fire sight gags, one-liners and sketches were derived from vaudeville and burlesque, but its "mod" attitude, sly double-entendres and political satire remade the variety show and turned the series into a pop-culture phenomenon. Its catchphrases such as "Sock it to me!" and "You bet your sweet bippy" became national slogans. Republican presidential candidate Richard Nixon even appeared in a cameo to intone a solemn "Sock it to me?" His opponent, Hubert Humphrey, later said his refusal to appear on the program may have cost him the election.
At the center of it all: Rowan, the mustachioed voice of reason, and Martin, who would espouse offbeat and absurd theories about life. The tuxedoed duo would open each show with banter they had polished in nightclubs. Later, they would lampoon politics and current events in "Laugh-In Looks at the News" (of the past, present and future) and award the Flying Fickle Finger of Fate to salute the foibles of the famous.
Laugh-In ran for five seasons, collected six Emmys, including back-to-back prizes for best musical or variety program, and launched the careers of stars such as Goldie Hawn and Lily Tomlin. The show was No. 1 for its first two seasons.
Martin, who wrote for radio before teaming up with Rowan in the 1950s, became a prolific television director after Laugh-In ended in 1973. In recent years, he appeared in guest spots on series including Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place and Diagnosis Murder. Rowan died in 1987.
"People are basically irreverent. They want to see sacred cows kicked over," Martin said in 1968, discussing Laugh-In's appeal. "If a show hires Robert Goulet, pays him $7,500 or $10,000, they're going to want three songs out of him; we hire Robert Goulet, pay him $210 and drop him through a trap door."
Posted 29 May 2008 - 08:04 PM
Actor Harvey Korman dies at 81
Staff, Vancouver Sun
Published: Thursday, May 29, 2008
Harvey Korman, star of TV's 'The Carol Burnett Show' and the classic big screen comedy Blazing Saddles, has died at the age of 81.
Korman had been hospitalized four months ago with an abdominal aortic aneurysm.
His daughter, Kate Korman, suggested it was a 'miracle' he survived at all considering the major operations that ensued.
Complications set in last week and he passed away Thursday.
Korman was born in Chicago in 1927. He spent thirteen years trying to get a job on Broadway before starting a nightclub comedy act with a friend. They were fired halfway through their first night.
He moved to California and sold cars for a further three years before landing a job on The Danny Kaye Show. When the show was cancelled he jumped to the Carol Burnett Show and spent a decade enjoying critical acclaim and audience praise. He also picked up four Emmy awards.
Korman's roles in films such as Blazing Saddles, High Anxiety, The History of the World Part I and a pair of Pink Panther movies cemented his place in Hollywood's comedic elite while turns in Gypsy, Huckleberry Finn and Bud and Lou brought his dramatic talents to the fore.
He is survived by his wife of 25 years and four children.
Posted 02 June 2008 - 12:50 PM
Rock 'n' roll pioneer Bo Diddley, who banged out hit songs powered by the relentless "Bo Diddley beat" that influenced rockers from Buddy Holly to U2, died on Monday at the age of 79.
Diddley died of heart failure at his home in Archer, Florida, his management agency, Talent Consultants International, said in a statement.
"One of the founding fathers of rock 'n' roll has left the building he helped construct," the statement said.
Diddley suffered a stroke during a concert in Iowa in May 2007 and was hospitalized in Omaha, Nebraska. In August 2007 he had a heart attack in Florida.
In a career spanning more than five decades, Diddley composed a substantial body of rock classics, including "Who Do You Love," "Bo Diddley," "Bo Diddley's a Gunslinger," "Before You Accuse Me," "Mona," "I'm a Man" and "Pretty Thing."
He cranked them out on a signature rectangular guitar, setting many of them to rumba-like rhythm of his "Bo Diddley beat" that gave rock 'n' roll a powerful rhythmic foundation.
Along with such contemporaries as Chuck Berry and Little Richard, he was among a pioneering group of black recording artists who crossed the American racial divide with music that appealed to white audiences and was emulated by white performers.
Although Diddley recorded relatively few chart-topping hits, his seminal role in the formative years of rock music was recognized by his induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987 and with a Grammy lifetime achievement award in 1998.
Posted 23 June 2008 - 10:10 AM
Sad loss indeed.
Posted 23 June 2008 - 12:24 PM
Posted 23 June 2008 - 01:52 PM
"When someone asks you, A penny for your thoughts, and you put your two cents in, what happens to the other penny?"
Posted 23 June 2008 - 05:37 PM
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