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So Long and Thanks for...

by david
May 12, 2001

Douglas Adams is dead.

He died Friday, May 11, of a heart attack. Normally, Clark Schpiell Productions might not be the place where you'd turn to find news of the passing of any famous person we usually traffic in a lighter fare. But Douglas Adams holds a special place for all of us here. His work -- the Hitchhiker's Guide and the Infocom text-game which carried its name -- were a huge part of all of our teenage years, and we all loved the Dirk Gently books as well. One of the readings at my recent wedding was from "So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish." As I said, the man and his books meant a lot to me and the others here at CSP.

On top of his books, in the last few years he'd built a digital multimedia company called "the Digital Village," dedicated to using technology to bring the fantastic to the masses. TDV's incredible "Starship Titanic" computer adventure (which won several design awards in '99) was just the first fruit of a company which might have become a powerful creative force in the computer entertainment industry. With his passing, TDV has folded in acknowledgement of Adams' own driving creative force, and the company's inability to survive without him.

While Adams' death is a great blow to the literary community, it is an even greater blow to those of us who work to blend entertainment and emerging technologies. Adams enthusiastically embraced new technologies, and was especially excited about the futures of computer graphics and the internet, and about delivering humor and fantasy to everyone through those technologies. (He was also an Apple Master you can find out more about that here.) All of us who feel the same about computers and the internet feel his loss, and must work harder in his absence to use our technological innovations to bring the fantastic and the hopeful to everyone.

Anyway, there's not much more I can say. I love his work, and, though I and most of those he touched never had any personal contact with him, it makes me sad that he is gone.

Visit the Douglas Adams forum for more tributes.

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