It just hit me; I'm living in a science fiction movie

Colonization was driven by the desire to acquire commodities of great value. Find something on the Moon or Mars or someplace that’d be worth the cost of shipping it back home and people will do whatever it takes to get it. Until then, there won’t be enough interest or money to make it viable.

My first TV was valve-powered, took five minutes to warm up and I had to manually dial in the two available channels. To be fair, it was pretty antiquated even by the standards of the time, but it had a big screen - had to have been an 18-incher :)

On the original topic, I think Science Fiction writers assumed that we all wanted to develop rocket ships and move out into space, but it appears that that tech path actually reached its peak with satellites and effective nuclear missiles. They didn’t imagine that what we really wanted was television* and mobile phones.

  • Games and the Internet would come under television, just to completely marginalise the geek’s view of the importance of the research and collaborative benefits of the Internet :)

We also have the nifty TV billboards and shit. Just like the futuar.

And actually, the only reason we made it into space in the first place was because of governments. If government hadn’t invested in a space program, I wonder how long it would have taken us to get where we are today. One thing to remember is NASA isn’t really funded at the same level it was when we went to the moon.

When I visited the National Museum of the US Air Force this week, I used my iPhone and one of the Wikipedia apps to look up information on many of the aircraft I was looking at that simply didn’t fit on the little signs in front of them.

Thanks to that, I discovered that the entry on John Glenn happens to mention that he “was parodied several times on the show X-Play,” which I found funny at the time.

Ironically, if the moon suddenly had mass quantities of perfect, giant gems (that had no industrial use) I don’t think it would provide a mass movement to colonize the moon. I think it would just devalue those gems because it’s known they’re nearby and would negate their value. Probably the only resources it would make sense to ship back from the moon would be gold or other precious metals used in products that are useful in smaller quantities. Except for Hydrogen & Oxygen. Which if found in easy-access mass quantities on the moon would be ridiculously awesome for all things space-based beyond Earth orbit.

I just started reading I Robot by Asimov today. Extra planetary bases are common but they’re still reading newspapers and they have to go around interviewing people to get a story rather than reading it on the Internet.

Whenever I look around I see miracles but so many weren’t even predicted.

You’re right about the traditional sci-fi being more about space and rocket ships and such. We’re probably much closer to the cyberpunk variation of sci-fi with electronic gadgets strapped all over our bodies and a tech savvy intrusive government.

Almost always, sci-fi overpredicted industrialization and failed to predict digitization.

In other words, they saw giant fleets of leviathan spaceships shuttling people to and fro, but they’re still pulling levers at the steam engine to get them to run. Star Wars’s spaceships have giant glowing plastic buttons.

This is one reason why Dune will hold up over the decades and beyond, although the later books undermine it by getting too specific. The idea that computers, aka “thinking machines” are banned because they end up trying to take over and kill us all, is an idea in an information age that still resonates. Although, once you flesh that idea out, as the Dune series was unable to resist the temptation to do, the idea quickly starts to suck in the mire of it’s poorly-thought out and mediocre imaginary rationale.

The Giant buttons on Kirk’s chair make me crack up. When I was little I thought the automatic doors were awesome though, now I see people mash their faces in if the store doesn’t have an automatic door.

One thing that bugs me about a lot of Sci-Fi is that it often gets tech, but fails to get software. Mind you, software moves far more quickly and is far harder to predict in many ways… I’m looking at the mashup world we live in now, along with social networking and all that stuff.

That’s one thing I like about Neal Stephenson, is his focus on “networks” (be they economic, historic via letters and ideas, etc) make him one of my favourites.

I’m just pleased we can get porn on just about every single mobile electronic device. NOW THAT’S PROGRESS!

Today at the gym I took a dump to the really serious, driving part of the Batman Begins soundtrack. It added gravity and adventure to the otherwise mundane activity.

Truly we have evolved!

I’m living in the first act of a subpar Judd Apatow rip-off.

Indeed you have!

What car is this?

I’m scared of driving and would love a car I couldn’t crash

I live in Osaka, the centre of which provided much of the inspiration for Blade Runner.

You kind of get used to living in the future after a while, but it’s still cool when you think about it.

I think earlier posts hit the nail on the head for my idea of future shock- the AMOUNT of things.

I remember when my buddies and I thought we had all the music anyone could need carrying around a boombox and a handful of cassettes(some of which I recorded myself off my stereo- yes I acquired my music free before the internet). So, that’s what? Maybe fifty or so songs. No video.

Now? I have a Nano, small as far as music players go. I can put all my music on it- all ‘good’ songs since I picked them out individually AND still have room for a movie or a couple of episodes of whatever tv show I want to watch later. And play games on it. And not only is it smaller than a boombox, it’s smaller than a Walkman, not only that it’s smaller than the cassettes I played on those devices.

Kids today don’t know what they have. If I could have seen that future back then, my head would have exploded.

Necessity is indeed the mother of Invention. It’s a pity that all little Invention can do to get that drunken whore’s love is make shinier cellphones and handbags.

Anyway, the interwebs aren’t sci-fi. Don’t you realize what our most sci-fi achievement is? If you look up once in a while you might see it, 'cause, barring the moon, the brightest object in the night sky is a fucking SPACECRAFT!!!

It’s not cool when you have to sleep in a drawer because renting an apartment costs five grand, though.

A friend of mine has lived in Japan for some time and says that in Japan you pretty much still have caste rules, and as a foreigner you’re basically on the same level as a turd. Is it really so bad? And how does Resident Evil 5 fit into this?

One of the conversations I usually have with teachers are how trips to the library have changed for kids today. Do kids today even go to the library to do research for book reports? It’s absolutely a completely different world from having to go develop a search plan before you even hit the card catalog of my youth.

Like six or so years ago, I managed the transition of my old middle school’s library from card catalogs to digital. I typed the cards into a computer but had to use a word processor to make the book labels because the printer couldn’t handle it.

Six years ago. Now you can transition just by scanning the cards, ripping the text from the image, and using a cheapo label printer. Amazing.

I had to go to the orthodontist recently to get my bonded retainer fixed, and motherfucker pulled out a UV raygun thing to dry out the glue. Something that used to take fifteen minutes of squirming in a chair, trying not to lick your teeth, is now over in a few seconds of BZZZZZing. Insane.