Thursday, 28 January 2010

18 - The future

Watching a film/reading a novel from the '50s set in the '90s or early '00s can be humorous if the description of the world is slightly off. Living on the moon, alien neighbours, laser guns etc. That's not to say that people back then absolutely believed that's how the world would be.

Modern sci-fi has wised up with plots being set so many hundred years in the future that by the time humanity reaches that point, the film/novel will probably have been lost so no humorous comparisons can be made.

Thing is, I don't think we'll ever get to the state where we have hover cars, robot servants, laser guns or complex societies living off-world. I doubt our robot servants will ever rebel and wage war upon us. I doubt we'll ever invent time travel or teleportation devices. Certainly not in my lifetime, and doubtfully in any lifetime. I don't know how this gels with the fact that I would happily write about such a futuristic society.

I'm sure there are currently many scientific advances that massively undermine what I just said. I know nothing about science. I'm just a cynical bore. I'd love all those things to occur, I just doubt they will.

Children of Men is a film I think has a very realistic view of the future. Ignore all the fascism/infertility plot and focus on the technology. Set in 2027, basically all that's different is cars are slightly changed and there are TV adverts everywhere.

Then look at Minority Report. I doubt in 2054 we'll have huge automated highways and cars that take us up to our flats. As cool as jetpacks and sick sticks are, I can't see them ever existing in a widespread way.

I'd loved to be proved wrong of course. Also, for the record, in a war against the machines, I think I'd side with the machines early on.

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