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I remember so clearly that day 12 years ago when I heard on the news that your dad had died. I immediately started crying and called my parents. I had never met him, but he has always meant so much to me.

The world could have really used his knowledge and skills these past 12 years. At least now I feel hopeful that Obama will start moving things back in the right direction. But no one will be able to do what Carl Sagan did.

Audrey Harper

(I wrote this for Carl. It appears on my blog, but I wasn't sure if the link would work. Hope you don't mind me posting it here.)

Honoring Carl Sagan-

I enjoy the nighttime. It gives me time to think, reflect and relax. As I write, I have a wonderful view of the snow, settled on the branches of Evergreens, picnic tables, and roads carved out by busy people. The cold, powered ground glistens with innumerable tiny crystals like a negative of the black sky overhead, filled with countless sparkling stars and worldlets.

Footsteps and deer tracks traverse the white terrain in all directions, disappearing in the deep blue shadows between the trees - Evidence of man's exploratory nature, having journeyed to every corner of the Earth; from the sweltering arid deserts, to calm, grassy plains, and the jagged, snow-capped terrestrial watch towers inching slowly toward the heavens over millions of years.

Yes. The Earth itself seems to be reaching for the stars. The ground beneath our feet has been on the move since before there were feet to stand upon it, thrusting us upward, shifting sideways, splitting apart, and forming new land - We live on a bustling, restless planet upon which we too, have been most active and ambitious. But why stop at Everest when a universe of expeditions awaits us in the sky?

With the creation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration in 1958, our adventurous species was handed the opportunity to begin our new voyage outside the comfortable confines of Earth. But even with 50 years of space travel and discovery under our belt, we find ourselves cautiously wading on the shores of the cosmic ocean.

There are plenty of space enthusiast who are more than ready to dive into that deep abyss, so why the hesitation? It all boils down to money, and behind that money there has to exist a overwhelming desire to explore. So where are all those people? I'll tell you where. They're living in a safe bubble that encloses the Earth, scurrying around with their heads down as if we are at the center of some isolated universe on a pedestal where no one exists but us, and God. Little do they know, that we are a mere speck on a speck on a speck of dust floating through the endless cosmos. Those who know this tend to be humbled, (not humiliated) and curious.

Recently an article by "Bad Astronomer" Phil Plait caught my attention. He blogged about his concern that Barak Obama may potentially slice NASA's budget in effort to appear fiscally responsible, despite the fact that they are allotted less than 1% of the U.S. annual budget. The media loves to exploit NASA blunders, rare, though they may be. Plait argues that everyone could benefit from improving NASA's fiscal management, not to mention an increase in budget. But cutting the overall budget would be an ignorant and/or sell-out move on Obama's part, depending on his justification. Let's hope that doesn't occur.

Perhaps more than anyone, astronomer Carl Sagan advocated for space exploration. His PBS series, "Cosmos" changed my life. Never before had someone so elegantly described the intimate connection between man and the stars, simplifying our grand unification with the phrase: "We are made of star-stuff." In a sense, he was a Romantic writer, with the ultimate muse that endlessly inspires with billions of spiral, elliptical, and irregular galaxies, each containing anywhere from millions to trillions of stars, and all their accompanying planetesimals. Twelve years ago, on December 20th 1996, Carl Sagan lost his battle with myelodysplasia in Seattle, WA. It's difficult to come to grips with this reality that he is gone, but fortunately he left behind an amazing legacy. In an effort to honor his life and all that he stood for, I write today. Though we never met, we share a deep kinship that transcends human life. Though it may not be as productive as I wish, I speak of him often to everyone who will listen. I hope to someday, reach a larger audience. For now, this will have to do.

For Carl, twelve trips around the sun without you -
You are deeply missed, but not forgotten.

Audrey Harper

A couple things to add:

Spacefest 2009: San Diego, February 19th (my bday) thru the 22nd.
I will be attending. I hope you will as well.

Also, I noticed an error above. Correction: "'Bad Astronomy' blogger, Phil Plait..." You know how it is with writing errors... it's a bit of a pet-peeve for me. :)


I am from a faraway country in Southeast Asia, called Indonesia.
Firstly, I have to say that I am just very glad that I accidentally know Mr.Sagan from a 1997 movie "Contact". Thanks also to the advancement of technology, and especially Internet (ie: Wikipedia, Youtube), a guy like me, whom is from faraway & still-developing country, can get to know what i would personally view as one of the greatest person i've ever known in the history of Mankind.

After getting to know more about him better (from Wikipedia, the Cosmos series in Youtube, which i'm planning to buy soon), I now view Mr. Sagan not only as a very-brilliant Scientist, but also i am constantly in awe by what everybody else seems to agree: his vision, which makes him 'see' the world one step ahead of everybody else, whom are still struggling with the current affairs of politics, religions, races, and other 'divisive' factors.

I am no scientist. In fact, to tell you the truth, I'm just a very ordinary 26-year old chinese-indonesian guy, who has been deeply fascinated with outer space & its vastness, along with the beautiful mystery within it, ever since I was in primary school.
I am currently working in a family-business, far from my deep interests in Astronomy. Yet, when I just saw again the movie "Contact", and afterthat, followed by a series of mini-clips of "Cosmos" and Carl Sagan's beautiful speeches on Youtube, I have to say that I am deeply moved again, and even got reminiscence of my 'old' childhood forgotten dreams & passion: in Astronomy, and got inspired so much.

Right now, after getting such very inspired, even though I still knew probably only very little about Mr.Sagan & his works, I felt such an incredible unquenched desire to spread the words about him, his philosophical-yet-beautiful speeches & just-marvellous video-clips (thanks to Youtube technology) to EVERYbody I can meet here in a tiny small little corner city called Jakarta. I'm also planning to write a Blog entry about him, to tell to my friends (who most probably still don't know about him, sadly) about his grand, yet also humble "Visions" about our Planet, and our vast unimaginable Universe.
And since I also have a talent in Music, I'm also planning to dedicate a song, special for him.
Yes, Mr.Sagan has moved me so much, that I feel no other way than to HAVE to contribute "something" for him, since I can relate very much with his visions about our tiny little "pale blue dot" planet & its varieties of Life inside.

I wish I can do a lot more than what I'm going to do...again, I'm no scientist, not even an expert in Science debate.
But I just hope that my salutation, and all my little efforts, in this developing country of mine, would at least give or leave some impacts.
Even for 1 or 2 people among my friends, who will get to know Mr.Sagan, will already be enough to make me so happy!

I am literally your fan, Mr.Sagan.

From Jakarta, Indonesia

Alberto Mario da Rosa

Hello, Nick.
First, sorry my bad english.
I am reading "The Demon-Haunted World" again. Always a great pleasure to read Carl Sagan. I grow up watching "Cosmos" in TV.
Really, your father was a great guy, a briliant mind and made a fascinating job.
Really, the world, today, needs a lot a man like him. After Sagan, Arthur Clarke, i don´t see in horizont a writer "science-clearlighted" like boths.

Wendy Morris

I am a 61 year old grandmother (used to be Catholic) who has just discovered Carl's work. I can hardly find the words to use to express the affect he has had on my whole approach to life; especially he has given me the gift of articulating my doubts about the existance of a Western style God. I gave the Demon-haunted world to my daughter who is talking about it to her daughter! How wonderful that he reaches out from the grave to inspire new generations. Thank you Ann Druyan for continuing to keep his work "out there".
As a direct result of reading Carl, I'm venturing out on an Astronomy Odyssey conducted by the State Astronomer of Western Australia. We will be journeying through the north of our country looking at astronomical sites of historical significance and, no doubt, doing lots of looking through telescopes in the clear, bright night skies of out-back Western Australia. Best wishes to all Carl's friends. Wendy

Ken Davies

Just like to say that I've now managed to get hold of (I think) all of Professor Sagan's books. Some of them are now out of print but it would be nice if they were available as ebooks. I can't think of a better, more compelling introduction to astronomy and science than his writings.

Fernando Ballesteros

Hello Nick, I've wrote a book about the SETI program (called "Gramaticas Extraterrestres") which is now being translated for the English version. In this one, I want to include more images than in the Spanish versión (the editorial allows -in fact wants- more pictures).

I want to put a composite image with the teams of the Voyager Golden Record and the Pioneer plate. I have almost all of them, but I cannot found any image from your mother. Do you have any with good resolution to be printed?

Sorry for posting this here, but I've not found your email address.

Daniela Dias Ortega

I'm just a Brazilian student, who admires a lot Carl Sagan's works. A lot.


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Idlewild Trilogy

  • i d l e w i l d

    "Sagan has a ferocious imagination."
    -- Stephen Baxter

  • e d e n b o r n

    "One of the best post-apocalyptic novels you will ever read."
    -- SFX Magazine

  • e v e r f r e e

    "Sagan's mind-blowing post-apocalyptic trilogy comes to a satisfying, terrifying conclusion."
    -- Kirkus Reviews


  • Aristeia Rising

    "An intense and intelligent story partnered with art that makes your eyes drool."
    -- Ain't It Cool News

  • Hubris

    "Lord, this is epic. If you thought the first volume of the Shrapnel series was intense, brutal, and dark, just wait until you get your hands on its follow up."
    -- Comics Bulletin


  • Future Proof

    "A delightful 'expedition in search of the future,' providing clear explanations of today's cutting-edge technologies to find where science fiction has become reality."
    -- Publishers Weekly

Star Trek

  • Voyager: Season 5

    "Year five of Star Trek: Voyager is the greatest achievement in its seven year run. This is Voyager in its prime, and in its absolute top form."
    -- DVD Answers

  • TNG: Season 7

    "One of Next Generation's best seasons ever... The series was at the top of its game, consistently turning out episodic sci-fi hours that felt fresh and captured the imagination."
    -- SciFi.com

Computer Games

  • Zork Nemesis

    "The story is dark and gripping. Numerous subplots and twists are heightened by a surprise climactic revelation. Character developments are complex. The portrayals of the dark side of mankind in these characters are chilling."
    -- The Adventure Collective




Carl Sagan

  • Visit the Carl Sagan Portal

  • Visit the Celebrating Sagan site

  • Visit the Planetary Society