A Tribute to Carl Sagan and Stephen Hawking
When Carl Sagan’s Cosmos first hit public TV beginning in 1980, I was immediately touched and entranced by Carl’s personal vision of the cosmos. He put his finger on a lot of things that I’d thought and wondered about when it came to astronomy and space science. It was like he (and the other creators of the series — Ann Druyan and Steven Soter among them) had a pipeline into my brain. It’s probably an understatement to say that the series inspired me. It wasn’t long before I went back to school to study astronomy. I’ve heard others — astronomers, science writers, various scientists, teachers — say that they, too, were inspired by the Cosmos series.
Today, nearly 30 years after the first broadcast of the series, and close to 13 years after Carl’s death, the series still inspires. And, through tributes such as the one below, created by John Boswell, it’s finding new ways to open people’s minds to the wonder and beauty of the cosmos.
This piece of video is also a salute to another visionary mind — Dr. Stephen Hawking. I had the privilege of meeting Dr. Hawking some years ago and was immediately also touched by his work, his perseverence, and his unique insights into physics and astronomy. Both men have shared their personal insights with the world and inspired millions of people with their work. I’m glad to see that new generations are finding them relevant and inspiring. Enjoy!