Isaac Asimov (January 2, 1920 - April 6, 1992) originally but now transcribed into Russian as was a Russian-born American Jewish author and biochemist, a highly successful and exceptionally prolific writer best known for his works of science fiction and for his popular science books. Asimov's most famous work is the Foundation Series. His other major series are the Galactic Empire Series and the Robot series, both of which he later tied into the Foundation Series. He also wrote mysteries and fantasy, as well as a great amount of non-fiction. Asimov wrote or edited more than 500 volumes and an estimated 90,000 letters or postcards, and he has works in every major category of the Dewey Decimal System except Philosophy . Asimov was by consensus a master of the science-fiction genre and, along with Robert A. Heinlein and Arthur C. Clarke, was considered to be one of the "Big Three" science-fiction writers during his lifetime.
Most of Asimov's popularized science books explain scientific concepts in a historical way, going back as far as possible to a time when the science in question was at its simplest stage. He often gives nationalities, birth dates and death dates for the scientists he mentions, as well as etymologies and pronunciation guides for technical terms. Examples of this style include his Guide to Science, the three-volume set Understanding Physics, and Asimov's Chronology of Science and Discovery.
Asimov was a long-time member of Mensa, albeit reluctantly; he described them as "intellectually combative". He took more joy in being president of the American Humanist Association. The asteroid 5020 Asimov, the magazine Asimov's Science Fiction and two different Isaac Asimov Awards are all named in his honor.