The Changing Spaces of Reading and Writing

Technology is…. magic

Sir Arthur Clarke, co-author of 2001: A Space Odyssey, was a science fiction and otherwise “speculative fiction” author, inventor and “futurist”. He coined the three laws of prediction as follows:

  1. When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong.
  2. The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible.
  3. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.

The last two laws in particular represent a commentary on technology from my perspective. The notion of the impossible becoming possible; the notion of having to reach beyond what is currently afforded in order to truly see what we are capable of achieving; the notion that present innovations would have been considered magical in the past. Technology is anything that furthers our current capabilities into the future, by keeping the lessons of the present and the foundations from the past in mind.


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