He was the greatest technological prophet of the 20th century and co-created the legendary film 2001: A Space Odyssey. Now, Arthur C Clarke casts his unique vision 1,000 years into the future and asks: what will become of us?
I took a tuk-tuk to Sir Arthur C Clarke's house. The motorbike-taxi weaved through the monsoon-rutted dirt roads of Sri Lanka's capital, past oxen carts and re-reconditioned Hondas and old men swerving on knackered bicycles, past women at the side of the road drying leaves and dyeing cloth and men pimping massages ('Nice girls, nice boys'), past teenage soldiers toying with machine guns, and barefoot children flying kites, and shacks selling tyres and Cokes and mangoes. Colombo looks more like a city out of Mad Max than 2001. When we finally came to a stop outside Clarke's walled compound, just up the road from the parliament building, next door to the Iraqi embassy, the tuk-tuk driver acknowledged that we had entered a different world. 'Ah,' he said, grinning, 'you go to see the man in the moon'.
He wrote 2001 with Stanley Kubrick. He inspired Star Trek and the satellite revolution. Now Arthur C Clarke lives in Sri Lanka, plugged into e-mail, fighting accusations of paedophilia, and living in the past.