Why is it that high tech always seems more sexy on the big screen? You look at some nifty new gadget or geegaw on TV or in a movie and think to yourself: That is so cool! Everything seems more interesting, more exciting, and just plain better than real life when you see it on the screen that reality can be disappointing.
The reason for this is as follows: I was recently putting together imagery for pictures for shirts and apparel for the upcoming SFSNNJ online store, and I noticed some things that I had seen in real life pictured on the internet. The pictures were sleek and impressive, but I know what the devices look like, so I know that the reality is hardly as glorious.
Personal Robots: From Asimo to Roomba and Scooba, personal robots are starting to make their way out to the public. While still expensive, they are far more versatile than any past versions. Still, they lack a certain level of charisma in person (how excited can one get about a robot vaccuum). On the plus side, though, if Asimo decided to violate the laws of robotics it would be fairly easy to escape him as he moves slower than most zombies.
Communicators: Eat your heart out James T. Kirk, the Razr is here to take the place of your blocky old communicator. As a Razr owner, I have to admit that I hate this phone. When it works it is pretty good, but when it doesn't, it really doesn't. Given the fact that cellular tech has been around for almost two decades (starting with the big bulky devices of the 1980's) you would think that we've gotten it right.
Artificial Intelligence: Poor Eliza, you have no mate (of course you are not an A.I. either). Still, programs are getting smarter and more adaptive. Basic gaming engines have fairly complex A.I. programs, and some of the stuff swimming in the waters of the internet is pretty scary, but the problem is that even the best A.I. is still just a village idiot who needs constant instruction.
Flying Cars: Believe it or not, there are such things out there (assuming you have the better part of a million to spend on your conveyance). In still photos the flying cars look really cool, in moving pictures, they are definitely not graceful or even attractive. In point of fact, they look like wobbly 1950's flying saucers most of the time.
Ahh, well, all things considered I guess we will just have to live with the reality. The only other choice is to become Luddites!