Walter Zessner RIP

A longtime Science for Peace member and gentle man, Walter Zessner died in Toronto on December 13. Born in Germany, Walter immigrated to Toronto as a young man and served as an electrical engineer for many years at the CBC and George Brown College. He was particularly active in Science for Peace during the 1980s, and became engaged deeply as well in the Society on the Social Implications of Technology. Perennially concerned about how the technological decisions we make today will constrain the choices of coming generations, he sought a realistic balance between utopian enthusiasm and dystopian fear of technology. He deplored the wide gap between the two cultures—humanities and science. His Globe and Mail obituary of December 22 suggested that friends honor Walter’s memory by contributing to Science for Peace.

We at Science for Peace can refresh his insights in our thinking and honour his memory by reading his thoughtful essays. One pithy statement of his concern was a late paper titled “Challenge of the Digital Revolution: Mediating the Two Cultures Divide.” which can be found here: http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/stamp/stamp.jsp?arnumber=05475104 .

You can also find links to other publications of his at: http://www.journalogy.net/PublicationList?srcType=2&desType=3&srcID=50346555&desID=5149

A celebration of Walter’s life will take place in the near future. We extend our affectionate condolences to his wife Gertrud, and the family of his son Michael. Other condolences may be forwarded to them through www.etouch.ca.

Metta Spencer President, Science for Peace

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