Douglas Adams would have been 61 today (March 11), and what is the perfect tribute gift for a cult hero science fiction author? Well, a Google Doodle, of course.
Google celebrates Adams’ birthday with an interactive sketch loaded with details that are an ode to his work. Items essential for space travel like a cup of tea and a towel are laid out on a giant computer, some of which are clickable to reveal characters like the paranoid android and the Babel fish.
“Hitchhiker’s Guide” began as a BBC radio show in 1978 before the wildly popular book was published in 1979. And award-winning British TV show would follow. Adams wrote the screenplay for the 2005 film adaptation starring Zooey Deschanel and Martin Freeman.
In the “Late Night” interview below with David Letterman, Adams claimed the idea for “Hitchhiker’s Guide” came to him when he ways lying drunk in an Austrian field, clutching a copy of “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Europe.” But Time points out a 2005 biography of Adams by M.J. Simpson dispels that story as a myth and claims Adams had the idea during a visit to Greece in 1972.
Adams passed away in 2009 after suffering a heart attack. His funeral was the first church service to be broadcast via web on BBC.