Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Sci Fi Movies Predicted Many of Today's Tech Innovations

In a "chicken or the egg" scenario, many of today's most dazzling technological innovations were seen in the science fiction movies of 20 or 30 years ago. Smartphones, touch screens, tablet computing, gesture control a la Kinect, and more--all appeared in the futuristic gadgets of yesterday's science fiction.  But were the creators of those films clairvoyant, or were today's innovators inspired by the cool gadgets they saw onscreen?

Hunter Communications Original News Source:
USA Today

Link to article:

Excerpt: "A woman slides into what resembles a tanning bed for a quick health diagnosis and instant treatment. Traces of cancer are found — and removed immediately.

On another planet, in a galaxy far, far away, people communicate faster than the speed of light with a device called an Ansible.

Both futuristic scenarios are delivered to you courtesy of Hollywood in the science-fiction film Elysium, which premieres in cinemas across the nation today. But if the past few decades of film are any indication, the fiction seen on the screen this weekend might become fact 10 or 20 years down the road.

Before you scoff at this notion and hop on your iPad to watch a live feed from across the planet — remember when that would have seemed far-fetched? — consider how science-fiction films from the recent past have accurately predicted how we live and work today.

Google Glass, the driverless car and robots all had roots in films such as Blade Runner (1982), Back to the Future (1989) and Total Recall (1990). Indeed, engineers and designers at Google, Apple and elsewhere will tell you that these far-out-there films fed their imaginations and helped — at least in part — fuel the technology explosion of the past generation.

'You see so many dreamers today because there are so many ideas floating on social media. It's bred a much faster cycle of what-ifs?" says Justin Maguire, lead designer for Frog Design, which helped create the look for Apple Macintosh computers and the Sony Trinitron TV set. "There's almost nothing we can't build today.'An evolution in the way tech companies now develop products — with an emphasis on bold design, simplicity and ease of use — has been sparked, in part, by sci-fi films of yesteryear. Who knows? An onslaught of forthcoming films such as Elysium, Ender's Game, Riddick and Gravity might offer a peek into the next few decades, according to experts in tech and sci-fi.

'I grew up obsessed with Star Trek, so naturally when I bought my first smartphone I immediately set the background to look like a tricorder (a handheld device used for sensor scanning and data analysis),' says Matt Carver, 30, senior technologist at Big Spaceship, a creative-design agency in Brooklyn, N.Y. 'Watching (Star Trek character) Geordi LaForge effortlessly swipe and tap his touch-screen computers is still the inspiration for a lot of how I want users to feel when they interact with a site I've built.' "

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