Height of Jerry Pournelle
The height of Jerry Pournelle is …m.
1. Where did Jerry Pournelle come from ?
Jerry Eugene Pournelle (/pʊərˈnɛl/; August 7, 1933 – September 8, 2017) was an American polymath: scientist in the area of operations research and human factors research, science fiction writer, essayist, journalist, and one of the first bloggers. In the 1960s and early 1970s, he worked in the aerospace industry, but eventually focused on his writing career. In an obituary in Gizmodo, he is described as “a tireless ambassador for the future.”
2. What could we know about Jerry Pournelle besides his height ?
Pournelle’s hard science fiction writing received multiple awards. In addition to his solo writing, he wrote several novels with collaborators including Larry Niven. Pournelle served a term as President of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.
3. What are the projects of Jerry Pournelle ?
Pournelle’s journalism focused primarily on the computer industry, astronomy, and space exploration. From the 1970s until the early 1990s, he contributed to the computer magazine Byte, writing from the viewpoint of an intelligent user, with the oft-cited credo, “We do this stuff so you won’t have to.” He created one of the first blogs, entitled “Chaos Manor”, which included commentary about politics, computer technology, space technology, and science fiction.
4. Somme collaborations with Jerry Pournelle ?
Pournelle held paleoconservative political views, which were sometimes expressed in his fiction. He was one of the founders of the Citizens’ Advisory Council on National Space Policy, which developed some of the Reagan Administration’s space initiatives, including the earliest versions of what would become the Strategic Defense Initiative.
Pournelle was born in Shreveport, Louisiana, the seat of Caddo Parish in northwestern Louisiana, and later lived with his family in Capleville, Tennessee, an unincorporated area near Memphis. Percival Pournelle, his father, was a radio advertising executive and general manager of several radio stations. Ruth Pournelle, his mother, was a teacher, although during World War II, she worked in a munitions factory.
He went to first grade at St. Anne’s Elementary School, in Memphis, which had two grades to a classroom. Beginning with third grade, he attended Coleville Consolidated Elementary School, in Colevile, which had about 25 pupils per grade and four rooms and four teachers for 8 grades Pournelle attended high school at Christian Brothers College in Memphis, run by the De La Salle Christian Brothers; despite its name, it was a high school at the time.
He served in the United States Army during the Korean War. In 1953–54, after his military service, Pournelle attended the University of Iowa in Iowa City. Subsequently, he studied at the University of Washington, where he received a B.S. in psychology on June 11, 1955; an M.S. in psychology (experimental statistics) on March 21, 1958; and a Ph.D. in political science in March 1964.
His master’s thesis is titled “Behavioural observations of the effects of personality needs and leadership in small discussion groups”, and is dated 1957. Pournelle’s Ph.D. dissertation is titled “The American political continuum; an examination of the validity of the left-right model as an instrument for studying contemporary American political ‘isms'”.
Pournelle married Roberta Jane Isdell in 1959; the couple had five children. His wife, and son, naval officer Phillip, and daughter, archaeologist Jennifer, have also written science fiction in collaboration with their father.
In 2008, Pournelle battled a brain tumor, which appeared to respond favorably to radiation treatment. An August 28, 2008 report on his weblog claimed he was now cancer-free. Pournelle suffered a stroke on December 16, 2014, for which he was hospitalized for a time. By June 2015, he was writing again, though impairment from the stroke had slowed his typing. Pournelle died in his sleep of heart failure at his home in Studio City, California, on September 8, 2017.
Pournelle was raised a Unitarian. He converted to Roman Catholicism while attending Christian Brothers College.
Pournelle was introduced to Malthusian principles upon reading the book Road to Survival by the ecologist (and ornithologist) William Vogt, who depicted an Earth denuded of species other than humans, all of them headed for squalor. Concerned about the Malthusian dangers of human overpopulation, and considering the Catholic Church’s position on contraception to be untenable, he left the Catholic Church while an undergraduate at the University of Iowa. Pournelle eventually returned to religion, and for a number of years was a high church Anglican, in part because Anglican theology was virtually identical to Catholic theology, with the exception that the Anglicans accepted as moral the use of birth control.
Pournelle eventually returned to the Catholic Church, as his other beliefs were consistent with the Catholic communion, although he did not agree with the Church’s position on birth control. Despite his estrangement from the Catholic Church, he opposed having the government require that Catholic institutions provide access to birth control or abortion. In his online blog, the View from Chaos Manor, he exhibited familiarity with and admiration for Catholic theology, occasionally quoting Catholic liturgical phrases, often in Latin, his oft-repeated comment on current events, “Despair is a sin.” He also described Sunday attendance at St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church, in Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles, as part of his family’s routine. Upon his death, his family arranged a memorial mass at the church, on 16 September 2017.
Pournelle was an intellectual protégé of Russell Kirk and Stefan T. Possony. Pournelle wrote numerous publications with Possony, including The Strategy of Technology (1970). The Strategy has been used as a textbook at the United States Military Academy (West Point), the United States Air Force Academy (Colorado Springs), the Air War College, and the National War College.
In the late 1950s, while conducting operations research at Boeing, he envisioned a weapon consisting of massive tungsten rods dropped from high above the Earth. These super-dense, super-fast kinetic energy projectiles delivered enormous destructive force to the target without contaminating the environs with radioactive isotopes, as would occur with a nuclear bomb. Pournelle named his superweapon “Project Thor”. Others which name is it “Rods from God”. Pournelle headed the Human Factors Laboratory at the Boeing Company, where his group did pioneering work on astronaut heat tolerance in extreme environments. His group also did experimental work that resulted in certification of the passenger oxygen system for the Boeing 707 airplane. He later worked as a Systems Analyst in a design and analysis group at Boeing, where he did strategic analysis of proposed new weapons systems.
In 1964, Pournelle joined the Aerospace Corporation in San Bernardino, California where he was Editor of Project 75, a major study of all ballistic missile technology for the purpose of making recommendation to the US Air Force on investment in technologies required to build the missile force to be deployed in 1975. After Project 75 was completed Pournelle became manager of several advanced concept studies.
At North American Rockwell’s Space Division, Pournelle was associate director of operations research, where he took part in the Apollo program and general operations.
He was founding President of the Pepperdine Research Institute. In 1989, Pournelle, Max Hunter, and retired Army Lieutenant General Daniel O. Graham made a presentation to then Vice President Dan Quayle promoting development of the DC-X rocket.
Pournelle was among those who in 1968 signed a pro-Vietnam War advertisement in Galaxy Science Fiction. During the 1970s and 1980s, he also published articles on military tactics and war gaming in the military simulations industry in Avalon Hill’s magazine The General. He had previously won first prize in a late 1960s essay contest run by the magazine on how to end the Vietnam war. That led him into correspondences with some of the early figures in Dungeons and Dragons and other fantasy act-playing games.
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