A hall of fame line up if ever there was one! Professor Stephen Hawking, Dr. Carl Sagan and Sir Arthur C. Clarke are interviewed together by Magnus Magnusson on the big questions of God, the origin of the universe, extra terrestrial life and the future of mankind.
Produced by Central Independent Television in the UK in 1988, this debate takes place shortly after the release of Hawking’s Brief History of Time and many of the book’s topics are discussed. Hawking, along with his computerised voice, has become such an icon that it is interesting to see him at this time when Magnusson goes to great lengths to explain how his voice works.
Hilariously Hawking intersperses his descriptions of the universe with many jokes which help lighten the tone of the discussion. Other highlights include Clarke, who wrote 2001: A Space Odyssey, introducing the Mandelbrot Set. This fascinating equation which opens up the world of fractal geometry is a beautiful representation of infinite regress and self similarity, which goes some way towards exposing the mathematical DNA of nature. This sequence again dates the programme with Clarke having stayed up all night to run the computer simulation which he presents, a sequence that could be produced in seconds on today’s computers. Sagan, as always, is thoroughly engrossing.
God, The Universe and Everything Else