We made it to the end of June, against all the odds! Good work everyone!
It is time, once more, to dive into the colourful ocean that is Seriously Geeky Sundays, brought to you by none other than the lovely Heather of Just Geeking By. This week she has bestowed us with a series of questions centered around technology. Let’s have the briefing:
“Today is Alan Turing’s birthday, and Turing was a British computer scientist who developed the Enigma machine during World War II. His work in computer science was groundbreaking and he theorised about artificial intelligence. Today we’re thinking about technology in fictional worlds.”
Question 1 – What is the weirdest fictional technology item you’ve seen?
It’s got to be the whole pre-crime tech from Minority Report for me, what on earth is going on there? So they have three clairvoyant people bobbing around in a pool, all wired up to some gear that shows their visions on a screen (of people doing crimes in the future!). Then a ball rolls down a maze of chutes as Tom Cruise wears some daft gloves to interact with a floating touchscreen which… allows the police to go get the baddie-to-be?
I mean, aside from the moral dilemma of charging people before they actually do anything off, how the bloody hell does this labyrinthine Rube Goldberg machine even work in the first place, it’s bloody silly and over convoluted!
It’s not all bad in the world of Minority Report though, that gun that knocks people flying is bloody brilliant!
Question 2 – What is the most disastrous technological innovation?
I was, at first, thinking along the lines of warfare. Swords, guns, nuclear weapons, napalm, but when you boil it down they’re all ways of separating people from their lives and therefore are all pretty awful.
So instead I’m going to be a total hypocrite and say the smartphone, even though I use my old Pixel 1 on and off throughout the day to look at Twitter and stare at my blog and stats on the WordPress app (the geographical bit fascinates me, ok?)
So why am I being so down on the smartphone, it’s very successful! Well, yeah, but it’s also changed the way we interact with each other and the world. When I was in my teens there was nothing better than reaching the start of a new month and buying a load of gaming magazines like PowerStation and the official PlayStation magazine, shiny demo disc and all. But magazines are old hat now, we have loads of gaming sites that we can access on our smartphones, anytime and anywhere.
And my old man rantings don’t end there either. Cinema? People on smartphones! Restaurant? Smartphones! Bloody driving? Smartphones! I was once a passenger in a car going 80mph+ up the M6 motorway, whilst the driver was recording a snapchat video of themselves pulling faces, bloody terrifying!
Admittedly I’m being a bit daft here, smartphones have improved our lives in many ways too, but it’s less fun to be fair and measured, isn’t it?
Question 3 – Who is your favourite robot/droid?
Now this? This is my kind of question!
I love robots! HK47, RD-D2, RoboCop, ED209, Marvin the Depressed Android, the ABC robot from 2000AD, the list goes on!
But my favourite robot of them all? Well, it can’t bargained with, it can’t be reasoned with, it doesn’t feel pity or remorse, or fear and it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead!
I speak, of course, of the T800 Terminator, living tissue over metal endoskeleton, aka Arnold Schwarzenegger himself! I first watched The Terminator with my dad when I was about 9 or 10, having got massively into the Mega Drive tie in game (don’t worry, my dad didn’t let me watch the sex scene, just the murderin’!) and was absolutely blown away!
Kyle Reese, a soldier from the future sent back to 1984 and forced to steal a homeless man’s trousers, has to do battle with Arnie’s T800, sent back by Skynet, an evil AI with designs on wiping out humanity. Arnie’s mission is simple: kill a regular waitress called Sarah Connor before she can conceive and raise the future savior of the human race. I was enthralled with Schwarzenegger’s chillingly emotionless killing machine, watching him stalk around shooting people and engaging in car chases was awesome. Then, at the end, he loses all of his skin and is a straight up shiny skeleton robot instead, with the now iconic red eyes.
Terminator 2 had another T800 in it, only this time it was a good guy, captured by future John Connor and sent back in time to defend his 10 year old (extremely annoying) past self. This time he had the capacity to learn activated, which, by the end, made him almost human in his mannerisms and emotional capacity. He was really cool and cemented my love for Arnold, but that T1 performance will always be the standout for me!
What fictional futuristic item do you think will become real one day?
Hover cars! I wrote a piece about this in year 6, when I was 11 years old, though I estimated that the year 2000 would be their advent. How gutted was I when my parents just got another Vauxhall Corsa?
But I reckon they could join us, one day! I re-watched Blade Runner 2049 recently (excellent, excellent movie) and found myself loving Ryan Gosling’s Peugeot hover car, if a popular French car manufacturer can put their badge on this fictional car, then why not a real floaty one? Either that or the Vulcano from Ridge Racer Type 4.
Oh man, just give me a hovercar!
Question 5 – What futuristic vehicle would you love to take for a ride?
Let’s stick to the current subject, I’d love to throw a WipeOut hovercar around one of those mental, zero-gee tracks, or even just take for a drive around the block. They look like a jet fighter, a car and cyberpunk had a child, go super fast, have awesome paint jobs and, if the mood should take you, you can fire rockets and things out of them!
I’ll also add the Vulcano in here too, however. It’s similar to WipeOut cars, but a bit chunkier and a rather stylish purple. Who wouldn’t love that?
Question 6 – If you could have any character/celebrity be the personality for a supercomputer, who would it be?
Oh, snap, good question!
Well, I think the only logical solution would be Jean Claude Van Damme!
Why, you ask? Because if my computer had the badass attitude and silky smooth Belgian accent of the Muscles From Brussels, then I’d never trade it in! I could also ask it questions about all of my favourite Van Damme cheesefests, have that Kickboxer dance as a screensaver and, maybe, even have it do the splits with some USB sticks or something!
It’s a total no brainer!
And there, my friends, goes another Seriously Geeky Sunday! I’ll be surprised if I’ve chosen the same things as Heather this time, but you never know, she might be dreaming of a Van Damme AI too…