The story so far:
In the beginning the Universe was created.
This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move.
Douglas Noel Adams (11 March 1952 – 11 May 2001) is the author of the best-selling trilogy of five books known as The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Douglas Adams is one of the best known comedy writers in the world and personally he is one of my all-time favourite authors. His best known work, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy sold 15 million books in his lifetime and is a quintessential comedy and hallmark of science fiction. He was indeed one of the greats and his work has often been cited by people like Neil Gaiman, Stephen Fry and Eion Colfer as a great influence. He also contributed greatly to radio earning him a commemoration in The Radio Academy’s Hall of Fame. His other works included Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency and The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul and as well as the co-written The Meaning of Liff, The Deeper Meaning of Liff and Last Chance to See. A unfinished collection of his work was published as The Salmon of Doubt in 2002. He was always a ardent fan of technology and new inventions, only seaking for new and fun inovations. A few articles of his on the subject were published in The Salmon of Doubt. He went to great lengths to promote environmentalism and conservation. The plight of endangered animals was the topic of Last Chance to See. Save the Rhino yearly holds the Douglas Adams Memorial Lecture in recognition of him, to raise money for environmental campaigns.
“Science has lost a friend, literature has lost a luminary, the mountain gorilla and the black rhino have lost a gallant defender.” – Richard Dawkins
The Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - full review here
This planet has — or rather had — a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much all of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movement of small green pieces of paper, which was odd because on the whole it wasn’t the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.
The Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, a trilogy of five parts, is recognised as one the greatest comedies ever written. In BBC’s Big Read (a poll to find the most loved book in the country) the first book was ranked 4th. It originally started as a radio show but has since spread to books, movies, comics, computer games and towels. The books have sold 15 million copies and have been translated into over 30 different languages. A 6th book in the series was written posthumously by Eion Colfer (as Douglas had wanted to write one but died before writing it). The first book of the series was published in 1979 and a full review can be found here.
Environmental Work and Last Chance to See
[Mark Carwardine]‘s role, essentially, was to be the one who knew what he was talking about. My role, and one for which I was entirely qualified, was to be an extremely ignorant non-zoologist to whom everything that happened would come as a complete surprise.
Douglas Adams was a great supporter of conservation and environmental work. With Mark Carwardine, Adams made Last Chance to See, a radio series (later published in book form) which focused on a variety of endangered species around the world. The animals include the Aye-aye. Komodo Dragon, Mountain gorilla and the Amazonian manatee. He was extremely passionate about the environment and animals and described Last Chance to See as his favourite work. Last Chance to See raised awerness of animals by describing the various expeditions the duo took around the world to visit these animals. He participated and endorsed many environmental fundraisers such as climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in a rhino suit for Save the Rhino International.
The people who do understand what we’ve lost are the ones who are rushing around in a frenzy trying to save the bits that are left.
Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works. Anything that’s invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it. Anything invented after you’re thirty-five is against the natural order of things.
Douglas Adams was a big fan of technology, innovation. He was extremely impressed by Apple’s ideology and ideas, and was the first person in Europe to get a Macbook. Eventually he became one of the “Apple Masters”, a group of celebrities that Apple used as spokespeople for their products. Later he was a keynote speaker at both The Microsoft Professional Developers Conference and the Embedded Systems Conference. He also published a lot of small articles about technology of which The Salmon of Doubt contains a few.
Beethoven tells you what it’s like to be Beethoven and Mozart tells you what it’s like to be human. Bach tells you what it’s like to be the universe.
Douglas Adams is often quoted as saying that music had a major influence on what he was writing. In addition to listening to music he also had major conections with two bands, Pink Floyd and Procol Harum. On his 42nd birthday he was invited to play in Pink Floyd’s 28 October 1994 concert at Earls Court in London, playing guitar on the songs “Brain Damage” and “Eclipse”. He also chose the name of Pink Floyd’s 1994 album, The Division Bell. Douglas Adams was a friend of Gary Brooker, the lead singer, pianist and songwriter of Procol Harum.Adams appeared on stage with Brooker to perform “In Held Twas in I” at Redhill when the band’s lyricist Keith Reid was not available. He also commonly introduced Procol Harum at their gigs.