Spock at his computer station.
Last month we talked about Star Trek: The Original Series miniskirts, how they came to be and what they signified. While researching the paper that eventually turned into that post, I found out some interesting things about technology too. Most sci-fi isn’t actually futurist, meaning it doesn’t actually attempt to predict the future in an accurate way. Most sci-fi is designed to make a social statement by taking a situation to an extreme, or to explore possibilities by asking scientific what-if questions, or both. It’s not meant to be a “history of the future.”
Star Trek did those social things, and fantastically well. It’s famous for them. However, it also turns out that Gene Roddenberry, creator and showrunner of Star Trek, was an enthusiastic futurist who wrote papers on the future of technology and was invited to lecture at NASA as well as several universities and colleges. While Star Trek was first and foremost a fantasy of space travel, Roddenberry was interested in presenting concepts he actually found workable and likely to exist in the future. One of his most important ideas was the Enterprise’s central computer, described in this pre-production memo:
Posted in Science Fiction, Science Fiction Today, Tech, TV Shows
Tagged computers, futurism, Gene Roddenberry, history, internet, Star Trek, Star Trek: The Original Series, technology, The Internet
So in yesterday’s post I talk a lot about the inevitability of technology in the near future… say in the Geek Baby’s lifetime. Indeed, we seem to be getting closer and closer to that point of Singularity… and the potential for a Terminator or I, Robot sort of future. I’ve written a bit about this in terms of how it always seems to be an accident when this happens in fiction…
And really, we’ve talked a lot about the dystopian possibilities of the future, in our Science Fiction Today posts. Doom and gloom honestly seem very likely. Should we plan for the future – raise the Geek Baby – with that in mind?
And it all comes back to Dune. Rather than writing the story about the war with the machines, Frank Herbert wrote the story of the future long after that time. When humanity has learned to do without nearly so much technology – and have done so by enhancing humanity, through rigorous training, enhanced drugs, whatever means – just to not use computers and machines instead.
If we were to raise the Geek Baby without reliance on technology, this seems like the reason and the way to do so. Raise her as a mentat almost, a human computer. All full of logic and deduction and data. Maybe start with Sherlock? Battlestar Galactica and the fear of networked computers?
We most likely won’t, but it does beg the question… should we?…
Posted in IRL, Science Fiction, Science Fiction Today, Tech
Tagged Artificial Intelligence, Battlestar Galactica, Dune, Frank Herbert, Geek Baby, I Robot, Just Like Dune, Robots, Sherlock, Terminator, The Singularity
It’s been a busy few weeks here, as we worked our way through some of our normal features – like best of last year, and anticipation for this year. Plus the holidays, all that… it’s been a while since having coffee. So…
If we were having coffee, I’d say hello, and how are you doing? I’d probably talk about the upcoming Platypus Con, and all my plans to get things constructed, painted, and on the table to be playing some increasingly cool looking and competent Warmachine with our growing group.
I might talk about shows or games or other things we’re up to, but honestly those all came up in recent posts as well. No, what I’d probably do if we were having coffee is gush about the Geek Baby.
A big recent topic of consideration, concern, reading, and discussion has been Screen Time. For a long time, the official advice to parents has been Screen Time Is Bad, with the recommendation to be zero Screen Time before age 2.
I’m sure you can imagine where our problems begin. If not, hello, welcome to Comparative Geeks, we’re kind of plugged in.
Posted in IRL, Rant, Tech
Tagged Geek Baby, iPhone, Media, misused technology, parenting, Screen Time, STEM, technology, Television, Weekend Coffee Share, women in technology
I can’t believe it’s already been over 4 years since L.A. Noire first came out. I remembered hearing a great deal about it at the time, and really wanted to play it, but unfortunately back then I didn’t have a PS3 of my own. I’d almost completely forgotten about it until we were in Game Stop the other day and it was on sale for $5. So I finally decided to pick it up and try it.
I haven’t even gotten close to finishing it, I don’t think, but I really love it already. The story is based in post-WW2 Los Angeles, and the main character is a former decorated Marine and new cop. You start playing as a patrol officer, and immediately head off to a murder scene, which by going above and beyond to solve, you quickly begin to move up the ranks of the force to detective. From there you start investigating cases one at a time, including some homicides reminiscent of the Black Dahlia, and…that’s as far as I’ve gotten. And sorry, but I’m loving the story-line so much I don’t want to spoil it for myself.
Posted in Catching Up, Gaming, Tech, Video Games
Tagged driving, First Impressions, L.A. Noire, la noire, mystery, Review, rockstar games, Storytelling, Video Games