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The science fiction that turned into science fact

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posted on Jul, 30 2010 @ 06:57 AM

From HG Wells’s Time Machine to Star Trek’s phasers, science fiction has always tantalised the imagination.

Some ideas, such as the satellites first envisaged by Arthur C Clarke, have transformed the world. Others, such as the cloned dinosaurs of Jurassic Park, have proved a distant dream.

But slowly, the fantasies seem to be seeping into reality: last week alone, quantum physicists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology came up with a working theory of time travel; a flying car entered production in the United States; and parents panicked over the idea of their children becoming addicted to a “digital drug”.

Hello ATS thought this was a cool article and worth a look. It's not too heavy on the science either.

Time Travel

Has the MIT team really shown that time travel is possible? Sort of – but you’re unlikely to be able to drive a DeLorean back to 1955 like Back to the Future’s Marty McFly. MIT’s quantum time machine would allow scientists to affect particles in the past (and, in principle, people). But even if one is created, it won’t physically move objects back in time: instead, it would simply change the history of those objects. At least a quantum time machine is guaranteed paradox-free – so no concerns about accidentally killing your own grandfather.

Article focusing on MIT's time travel theory;

Check out the link for the rest of the article.

As a massive Sci-Fi fan I have to say I am quite disappointed in our attempts to replicate this movie tech
The movies provide us with a much more elegant and compact version.

But progress is progress and it is only a matter of time before these things are perfected or at least vastly improved (with the exception of the hoverboard lets face it).

In particular I can see the Ray Gun being a reality in the future, as a military project it will most likely receive the best funding out of the lot. It is already operational but a little bulky.

Apparently many of James Bond's gadgets inspired their real life military counterparts over the years.

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[edit on 31/7/2010 by ArMaP]

posted on Jul, 30 2010 @ 07:12 AM
Makes you wonder if some of these people knew something about the future...

Gene Roddenberry for one.., a phone without wires...? How silly that was back in the day when star trek came we have cell phones...

It seems that nearly anything that can be imagined is possible given enough time/tech...or some future knowledge to seed it..wink wink..

posted on Jul, 30 2010 @ 07:45 AM
Pournell and Niven I think in was wrote ‘Mote in Gods Eye’. It was probably late 60's early 70’s when I read it.

Great read and they used a hand held screen where you could search for any information. I remember thinking I want one of those.

posted on Jul, 30 2010 @ 12:14 PM
here i go again with my favorite motto:

thoughts are things.

everything that exists started out as a thought, an idea.
this is undeniable.

so, why not?
i actually have believed for a long time that science fiction is a very motivational genre and will one day be seen as the direct inspiration for that time's way of life - our present science fiction is our factual science future.

we may come up with an idea, write about it or make a movie or TV series, when we are in early adulthood, and then by the time we are grandparents, along will come one of our grandchildren's peers with a patent to the actuality that we once imagined!

all because we fantasized and then shared our fantasy in the form of entertainment and fiction!

i'm waiting for holodecks!

can you imagine?
the ultimate rpg without all the need to associate with strangers...not that i mind, but it would make our little daydreams and fantasies that much more fun when we don't have to compromise around other people!

posted on Jul, 30 2010 @ 12:54 PM
reply to post by queenannie38

Yep, holodecks. Where we can leave our world and create a new one for however long we can afford.

I suppose we are part way there as holodecks will just be an extension of today's computer games.

What I like most about computer games is that you can time travel with ease and as long as you save in the right place you can replay until you get it right.

[edit on 30-7-2010 by verylowfrequency]

posted on Jul, 30 2010 @ 02:00 PM
reply to post by verylowfrequency

no doubt!

i'm also looking forward to a wider application of the "undo" function!

posted on Jul, 30 2010 @ 02:35 PM

Originally posted by queenannie38

i'm also looking forward to a wider application of the "undo" function!

You know I'm surprised that most implementations of "Undo" is very poor in most popular apps. When I started in computers in 1987 I was using Autodesks AutoCad application and they had an Undo function that would last for your entire editing session whether that was an hour or eighteen hours that would allow step by step Undo as well as Undo save points similar to Windows restore points - thus you could in-bed undo's at any point of the process. Essentially a saved drawing within a drawing rather than having to manage external saved files in order to get back to a known point. You could at will ask to go 10 steps or 100 steps back and then hone in on your target point - was a brilliant implementation of Undo that I have not seen since.

posted on Jul, 30 2010 @ 02:41 PM
reply to post by Reevster

Not to spoil your post or anything, and god knows I love Gene, but AT&T ran a pilot program for car-phones in Manhattan in the 1930's, IIRC. In fairness, these were basically "radio phones", but the precedent existed.

I apologize -- it may have been during the 40's. I found an article here that talks about Bell Labs and the development of the technology.

[edit on 30-7-2010 by 0zzymand0s]

posted on Jul, 30 2010 @ 02:50 PM
reply to post by 0zzymand0s

Interesting - I didn't know that.

I would expect that the radio wasn't very portable though. Still it was enough to get minds churning on the idea perhaps.

posted on Jul, 30 2010 @ 10:52 PM
and what about a tricorder?
now THAT would be a real boon to just about everyone!


earlier today, after i posted, i remembered something that goes with this thread - i had lots to do so i didn't post it and nearly forgot it again.

when i was younger, i used to think that it would be the neatest thing to be able to listen to music, on a personal basis, wherever i went - something that only i could hear, right in my ears, that played the music that i liked and none of the ones i didn't. my general vision was something that was actually IN my ears, but i still got my wish.

IPOD's, or mp3 players, of course!

is that not the coolest thing ever?
the day that dawned on me, i smiled until i went to bed. imagine - i got my wish! who knows how many other people had the same general wish - we all got gifted with the actual fruition of our desire. plus anyone that hadn't thought of it could still enjoy it, just the same.

i think that could be called a *collective conscious invention*

a highly logical idea, Captain.

posted on Jul, 31 2010 @ 06:53 AM
Hey folks thanks for the great replies have really enjoyed reading them!

Queen Annie a special thank you to you for your part in the collective thinking drive that made the Walkman and it's derivatives possible!

I literally don't know where I'd be without mine!

Here's a few more pieces of science fiction which could soon be science fact;

Minority Report's Holoscreen

Shapeshifting Robot

Has been covered on ATS before I know, but it's just so cool and creepy. Still not quite the T1000 but getting there.

Here's a link to some concept gadgets, some of these are definitely a long way off, but you gotta start somewhere. The rendering in these pictures is fantastic;

[edit on 31-7-2010 by Big Raging Loner]

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