What's interesting about the shift from an industrial age to a technological age is that we keep inventing new media: movies, records, radio, television, the Internet, and now ebooks - and one of the things that's most interesting about the invention of a new medium is watching it reinvent itself as it penetrates the culture.
Life is hard. Then you die. Then they throw dirt in your face. Then the worms eat you. Be grateful it happens in that order.
When we look up at the night sky and wonder, 'Is there anyone else out there?' we're also asking who we are in relation to them.
'Who are we?' And to me that's the essential question that's always been in science fiction. A lot of science fiction stories are - at their very best - evocations of that question. When we look up at the night sky and wonder, 'Is there anyone else out there?' we're also asking who we are we in relation to them.
In the 20th century, we had a century where at the beginning of the century, most of the world was agricultural and industry was very primitive. At the end of that century, we had men in orbit, we had been to the moon, we had people with cell phones and colour televisions and the Internet and amazing medical technology of all kinds.
My approach to 'Star Trek' was, 'I know science fiction, and I know screen writing.' That was very arrogant of me, but you really need to be a little bit arrogant to think that what you have to say is good enough to justify the expense of hundreds of thousands - now millions of dollars - to make an episode of the TV show.