One of my favorite science fiction authors, Arthur C. Clarke passed away yesterday. Back in my school days, his book 2001: A Space Odyssey (the book, not the movie) was probably the first book which had a major impact on me, challenging my preconceived notions about the universe, god, religion etc. It also got me hooked on science fiction books: the smart ones (Clarke, Asimov, Niven etc.), not the Star Wars/Star Trek types. I believe good science fiction is probably the only genre which lets you 'stretch your imagination' beyond what you thought was possible.
I leave you with a video he broadcasted on his 90th birthday, just 3 months ago, in which he talks about the past, present and especially the future. Great stuff.