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How Star Trek influenced real technology

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So I saw the above pic on my Facebook feed page and it does seem true that Trek has been pretty spot on in terms of "predicting" future technology.

So I was wondering what do you all think will be the next thing of Trektech that we'll get an approximation of in real life? I mean between 2014-2020.

My guess is something with space. Whether more satellites, a private space group, or some kind of tech. Didn't VOY predict in the near future an astronaut goes to Mars? (Granted he was swallowed up by some weird anomaly). And isn't that European space group sending something to Mars soon? Who knows...

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The European group Mars One is making many bold claims, but in reality, is a LONG way off from their goal of establishing Mars colonies early in the next decade. They're nowhere near ready with the technology aspect (not to mention all their spaceships are still hypothetical at this point), and they haven't worked out such bugs as radiation shielding, duration, etc. The plan is for them to go to Mars to LIVE. Very audacious, but very impractical considering we haven't even been there in person yet. But I wish them luck, and if they succeed? I'll be cheering them on. Frankly, I don't see a Mars mission succeeding without NASA/Chinese/Russian/ESA muscle, but again; I wish them luck! ;)

And I think VGR had astronauts going to Mars in the 2030s (not too far off from NASA/Russia's estimates). We'll see (as a longtime space enthusiast, I sincerely hope so!).

As for the next piece of Trektech to become reality?

I predict we'll see some form of holodeck transpire. It's already there a bit with virtual reality goggle displays. The next stage will be a chamber which can physically simulate that environment in a totally 360 immersive manner. And holographic characters (and interfaces) that are almost, if not, indistinguishable from the real thing. As for actually being able to touch (or have sex with) them? I think that'll be achieved with pressure sensors built into some kind of holodeck-suit interface (which is also kind of there already).

I'm thinking we'll see these in less than 15 years, if not sooner.... and wait till the porn industry gets ahold of it. ;)

I predict a sharp decline in the birth rate when these come out. :laugh:

Edited by Sehlat Vie

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Mishi   

Sehlat has pretty much stated my opinion.

Here is what I WANT a trek-like advance in even though I know it won't happen:

I want some sort of advancement in public transportation. I am sure they have more than just teleporters in Star Trek (I would not use a teleporter. I am with Dr. McCoy on that one). I know they have some sort of network of an intra-planetary traveling system. My guess is a network of tubes/high speed trams that go everywhere. You don't see or hear people driving and talking about cars in Star Trek, so there has to be something.

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Short of Nasa/ESA Russia and China all coming together and sharing resources, I can't see us setting up a colony anywhere any time soon. That said, the whole idea of long distance space travel is pretty well academic until we invent some kind of magnetic shield to screen out the radiation/cosmic rays and all the other stuff out there that can fry us.

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As for the next piece of Trektech to become reality?

I predict we'll see some form of holodeck transpire. It's already there a bit with virtual reality goggle displays. The next stage will be a chamber which can physically simulate that environment in a totally 360 immersive manner. And holographic characters (and interfaces) that are almost, if not, indistinguishable from the real thing. As for actually being able to touch (or have sex with) them? I think that'll be achieved with pressure sensors built into some kind of holodeck-suit interface (which is also kind of there already).

I'm thinking we'll see these in less than 15 years, if not sooner.... and wait till the porn industry gets ahold of it. ;)

I predict a sharp decline in the birth rate when these come out. :laugh:

Well, some guys will never get any action otherwise. ;)

They already have a teleporter at least able to transfer atoms around. Give it perhaps another ten years, perhaps 15 and they'll be able to teleport people.

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As for the next piece of Trektech to become reality?

I predict we'll see some form of holodeck transpire. It's already there a bit with virtual reality goggle displays. The next stage will be a chamber which can physically simulate that environment in a totally 360 immersive manner. And holographic characters (and interfaces) that are almost, if not, indistinguishable from the real thing. As for actually being able to touch (or have sex with) them? I think that'll be achieved with pressure sensors built into some kind of holodeck-suit interface (which is also kind of there already).

I'm thinking we'll see these in less than 15 years, if not sooner.... and wait till the porn industry gets ahold of it. ;)

I predict a sharp decline in the birth rate when these come out. :laugh:

Well, some guys will never get any action otherwise. ;)

They already have a teleporter at least able to transfer atoms around. Give it perhaps another ten years, perhaps 15 and they'll be able to teleport people.

It doesn't teleport atoms exactly; more like the quantum information of an atom. The teleportation experiments done in Germany were more like 'tele-faxing' than teleportation.

People are WAY too complex; we've only just mapped the entire human genome a few years ago. And how do you break down ALL matter in a human body (essentially de-integrating it), turn it into energy and recombine it back into matter without killing the original? You can't set someone on fire and then turn the ashes back into a human being. Bombarding them with some form of 'exotic energy' would be about the same thing. You could teleport their atomic information, but to 'remake them' at the other end would only give you a newborn clone, not the same person.

Teleportation is simple fantasy (there is absolutely NO basis in reality for it). It'll never happen. Not in 15 years, not in 5,000.

Edited by Sehlat Vie

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As for the next piece of Trektech to become reality?

I predict we'll see some form of holodeck transpire. It's already there a bit with virtual reality goggle displays. The next stage will be a chamber which can physically simulate that environment in a totally 360 immersive manner. And holographic characters (and interfaces) that are almost, if not, indistinguishable from the real thing. As for actually being able to touch (or have sex with) them? I think that'll be achieved with pressure sensors built into some kind of holodeck-suit interface (which is also kind of there already).

I'm thinking we'll see these in less than 15 years, if not sooner.... and wait till the porn industry gets ahold of it. ;)

I predict a sharp decline in the birth rate when these come out. :laugh:

Well, some guys will never get any action otherwise. ;)

They already have a teleporter at least able to transfer atoms around. Give it perhaps another ten years, perhaps 15 and they'll be able to teleport people.

It doesn't teleport atoms exactly; more like the quantum information of an atom. The teleportation experiments done in Germany were more like 'tele-faxing' than teleportation.

People are WAY too complex; we've only just mapped the entire human genome a few years ago. And how do you break down ALL matter in a human body (essentially de-integrating it), turn it into energy and recombine it back into matter without killing the original? You can't set someone on fire and then turn the ashes back into a human being. Bombarding them with some form of 'exotic energy' would be about the same thing. You could teleport their atomic information, but to 'remake them' at the other end would only give you a newborn clone, not the same person.

Teleportation is simple fantasy (there is absolutely NO basis in reality for it). It'll never happen. Not in 15 years, not in 5,000.

I remember watching a program that was on the BBC the night they devoted an evening to celebrating trek's 30th anniversary. At one point they were talking about transporter technology and put into context the amount of computer memory it would have taken back then (in 1996) to record the exact position of every particle in a human body. They were talking in terms of stacking computer hard drives from here to a third of the way to the centre of the galaxy. :ohmy:

That said, computer tech's come along a bit since then, so it might not be quite so far now :giggle:

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As for the next piece of Trektech to become reality?

I predict we'll see some form of holodeck transpire. It's already there a bit with virtual reality goggle displays. The next stage will be a chamber which can physically simulate that environment in a totally 360 immersive manner. And holographic characters (and interfaces) that are almost, if not, indistinguishable from the real thing. As for actually being able to touch (or have sex with) them? I think that'll be achieved with pressure sensors built into some kind of holodeck-suit interface (which is also kind of there already).

I'm thinking we'll see these in less than 15 years, if not sooner.... and wait till the porn industry gets ahold of it. ;)

I predict a sharp decline in the birth rate when these come out. :laugh:

Well, some guys will never get any action otherwise. ;)

They already have a teleporter at least able to transfer atoms around. Give it perhaps another ten years, perhaps 15 and they'll be able to teleport people.

It doesn't teleport atoms exactly; more like the quantum information of an atom. The teleportation experiments done in Germany were more like 'tele-faxing' than teleportation.

People are WAY too complex; we've only just mapped the entire human genome a few years ago. And how do you break down ALL matter in a human body (essentially de-integrating it), turn it into energy and recombine it back into matter without killing the original? You can't set someone on fire and then turn the ashes back into a human being. Bombarding them with some form of 'exotic energy' would be about the same thing. You could teleport their atomic information, but to 'remake them' at the other end would only give you a newborn clone, not the same person.

Teleportation is simple fantasy (there is absolutely NO basis in reality for it). It'll never happen. Not in 15 years, not in 5,000.

I remember watching a program that was on the BBC the night they devoted an evening to celebrating trek's 30th anniversary. At one point they were talking about transporter technology and put into context the amount of computer memory it would have taken back then (in 1996) to record the exact position of every particle in a human body. They were talking in terms of stacking computer hard drives from here to a third of the way to the centre of the galaxy. :ohmy:

That said, computer tech's come along a bit since then, so it might not be quite so far now :giggle:

Even if you could store all that information in something of manageable size, there's still the question of the mechanics of the thing. How do you essentially vaporize someone, and then reconstruct that vapor somewhere else and then BACK into its' original form? That's more "I Dream Of Jeannie" than real science.

I have no doubt that computers will someday be able to store all quantum-level information contained in a human body (and I don't mean DNA sequencing; I mean quantum-level information... much deeper than DNA), but having the mechanics to effectively destroy and recreate something as mind-numbingly complex as a human being is just so much nonsense. Star Trek makes it look easy (through special FX) so we assume that, like flip-phones or other gadgets made real since the show, it should be just around the corner, but this one is VERY, VERY different.

I'd almost imagine warp drive (of some kind) long before we could have the near Q-like power to teleport individuals (and all their quantum data) across space. I say almost (on warp drive), because I don't see that one happening either.... certainly not in a few centuries (we can't even scrape up the incentive to go to Mars, let alone fly faster than light).

Edited by Sehlat Vie

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cloaking device...that's what we need. Or truck mounted photon torpedo launcher, I hate tailgaters!!!

Actually, cloaking devices are just around the corner; and in small scale they already exist. Using newly developed 'meta-materials.' While they're not yet perfect, nor practical for combat, the concepts behind them are sound.

http://www.examiner....uke-researchers

Edited by Sehlat Vie

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cool...now what about my truck mounted photon torpedo launcher???

Sounds like something I'd have installed in my car :giggle: Actually the first thing I'd install would be a de-materialisation circuit so I could escape traffic jams ...I'd save the torpedoes for the army of ****wits I have to share the roads with :angel_not:

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cool...now what about my truck mounted photon torpedo launcher???

Sounds like something I'd have installed in my car :giggle: Actually the first thing I'd install would be a de-materialisation circuit so I could escape traffic jams ...I'd save the torpedoes for the army of ****wits I have to share the roads with :angel_not:

Quantum torpedoes. That'd really clear the streets... :P

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Well I have to admit it's slightly depressing to know space travel/colonization is so behind schedule. By now we should have had something on the moon... We need artificial gravity ASAP. Or to build a station like Babylon 5 that spins. Seems like that would behoove us...

As for transporters? Yeah, I've never heard of that being a reality. Much less a reality in our near future. Sehlat Vie is right. Trek Transporters KILL people and reform an exact duplicate. Thomas Riker kind of proved that, no? Unless we gain transporter technology like "Jumper" where like a mini-wormhole opens and we're shoved into a different location. I'd buy that type of transporter over the Trek one. At least I don't die.

Don't worry, Mishi. I've seen some really interesting stuff in terms of idea for transportation in the near future. Pretty cool looking too. I'm waiting for that mass transit that spans the entire globe.

Sehlat Vie - really bold prediction about the holodeck. Although I fear that for the obvious reason: it'll put Mankind to a grinding halt... haha.

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I'm waiting for that mass transit that spans the entire globe.

I think suborbital flights (the kind that fly briefly into space before falling back to earth) are the best bet for that. A few minutes at orbital speeds (roughly 17,500 mph/28,000 kph) would put you almost anywhere around the globe in about 90 minutes. Not to mention more infrastructure upgrades like the chunnel Eurostar between France and the UK. I know they've started construction on a high speed train here in California that'll connect Los Angeles and San Francisco in about two hours (only slightly longer than flying... I know; I've flown from LA to Frisco a few times).

Sehlat Vie - really bold prediction about the holodeck. Although I fear that for the obvious reason: it'll put Mankind to a grinding halt... haha.

I should rephrase a bit; it won't be a holodeck that recreates matter; more like a visually/aurally immersive experience only (maybe with scents added in too; like Disneyland's "California Adventure" IMAX ride). And the sense of touch will be delivered to a pressure sensor network embedded in the user's suit or gloves (or both).

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benbess   

Believe it or not, I'm scheduled to teach a college course on Star Trek this fall. One of the things I'd like to explore is how Star Trek has influenced technology in our world. For instance, it seems pretty sure that the communicators from TOS helped influenced the development of the flip phone in the early 90s, and that the PADD of 1988 helped inspire the iPad of 2010. What other examples can you think of? And, more importantly, does anyone have any references to articles or links to websites that make the case? I'm particularly looking for an article that might have interviewed engineers, who might have said, more of less, "Well, we all saw that Star Trek episode, and we realized that we could actually engineer, build, program, and sell something that was similar."

Thanks in advance, Ben

Edited by benbess

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Believe it or not, I'm scheduled to teach a college course on Star Trek this fall. One of the things I'd like to explore is how Star Trek has influenced technology in our world. For instance, it seems pretty sure that the communicators from TOS helped influenced the development of the flip phone in the early 90s, and that the PADD of 1988 helped inspire the iPad of 2010. What other examples can you think of? And, more importantly, does anyone have any references to articles or links to websites that make the case? I'm particularly looking for an article that might have interviewed engineers, who might have said, more of less, "Well, we all saw that Star Trek episode, and we realized that we could actually engineer, build, program, and sell something that was similar."

Thanks in advance, Ben

Welcome aboard Ben!

As your topic was very similar to an existing topic, I chose to merge them. You'll find (in this thread) we've covered perhaps a lot of what you're looking for. Enjoy, and welcome to Trekcore. :)

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Zef'No   
it seems pretty sure that the communicators from TOS helped influenced the development of the flip phone in the early 90s, and that the PADD of 1988 helped inspire the iPad of 2010.

No offence, but to be honest I don't think a fictional TV show really did influence those things, they were just a natural technological growth... As technology improves, things get smaller. Whether that's a phone, a computer or whatever. I'm quite sure that, had Star Trek never existed, we would still be using mobile phones and tablets just as they are now.

The official Star Trek website recently conducted a poll on this subject:

http://www.startrek....ired-by-trek-is

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it seems pretty sure that the communicators from TOS helped influenced the development of the flip phone in the early 90s, and that the PADD of 1988 helped inspire the iPad of 2010.

No offence, but to be honest I don't think a fictional TV show really did influence those things, they were just a natural technological growth... As technology improves, things get smaller. Whether that's a phone, a computer or whatever. I'm quite sure that, had Star Trek never existed, we would still be using mobile phones and tablets just as they are now.

The official Star Trek website recently conducted a poll on this subject:

http://www.startrek....ired-by-trek-is

Actually I was watching a Science channel documentary once (about phone technology) and the inventor of the flip phone freely admitted that he was inspired by ST when he was younger.

From ranker.com:

A lot of people know that the flip-phone was actually invented by Star Trek, but if you're not among them then… hey, the flip phone was invented by Star Trek! Dr. Martin Coooper, inventor of the mobile phone, says that watching Captain Kirk yammer away on his communicator gave him the idea for a mobile phone, and later generations of "flip phones" imitated the iconic design.

Similarly inspired was the Dr. Marc D Rayman, inventor of the ion propulsion system used in several NASA robot probes including Dawn and Deep Space One (that last one has a familiar ring... :laugh: ). Ironically, he said he was inspired by "Spock's Brain"; proving that even the worst ideas can sometimes yield something positive. :giggle:

As for the PADD? I would say that was just a logical progression of both laptop and cellphone technology; streamlining of both, but not necessarily a direct result of ST's pad.

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benbess   

Sehlat Vie: Thanks for merging my thread with the earlier one.++

And more thanks for that very useful article. I was hoping something like that existed out there.

Best, Ben

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Zef'No   
A lot of people know that the flip-phone was actually invented by Star Trek, but if you're not among them then… hey, the flip phone was invented by Star Trek! Dr. Martin Coooper, inventor of the mobile phone, says that watching Captain Kirk yammer away on his communicator gave him the idea for a mobile phone, and later generations of "flip phones" imitated the iconic design.

So if this one guy never lived (or never saw Star Trek), the mobile phone would never have been invented? I think not.

I'm sure if you look into it, handheld communication devices like that would have been used in other contexts long before Star Trek. - Even the walki-talkie was patented in 1939.

It would have happened sooner or later anyway. The guy may have been inspired by Star Trek, but that's nowhere near the same thing as saying that Star Trek "invented" the mobile phone!

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benbess   

Zef'No: You make a good point that cell phones would have existed anyway.

But it's also seems true that Star Trek helped influenced the development of the flip phones and other things. I don't think anyone is saying these things wouldn't exist, but just that these engineers were inspired by Trek.

Edited by benbess

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A lot of people know that the flip-phone was actually invented by Star Trek, but if you're not among them then… hey, the flip phone was invented by Star Trek! Dr. Martin Coooper, inventor of the mobile phone, says that watching Captain Kirk yammer away on his communicator gave him the idea for a mobile phone, and later generations of "flip phones" imitated the iconic design.

So if this one guy never lived (or never saw Star Trek), the mobile phone would never have been invented? I think not.

Oh, of course not! No one's suggesting that the mobile phone is directly attributable to ST only; but the idea of a flip-open grid/antenna phone? That bit of styling (and styling alone, not function) owes a LOT to ST....

@ Ben

As for finding/merging the topics? No problem. ;) I was just certain that we had something like this already that could give you a head start....

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Zef'No   
That bit of styling (and styling alone, not function) owes a LOT to ST....

Perhaps. But then it is only a matter of "styling", nothing to do with the "technology" per se.

So in the context of a talk on "How has Star Trek influenced modern technology", the example is somewhat dubious to say the least.

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benbess   

Not dubious imho. People became engineers and worked extra hard because of Star Trek. The cell phone would have existed, but perhaps it might have been a year or so later, and maybe it wouldn't have been a flip phone. We'll have to agree to disagree.

Edited by benbess

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