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Thread: Reminded That I Live in the Future

  1. #1
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    Reminded That I Live in the Future

    Every once in a while, I'm reminded that I live in the future.
    Many things that would have been considered Science Fiction when I was a child are commonplace, but occasionally I'm caught off guard.
    Perhaps we can use this thread to post events where you have been reminded that you live in the future.

    Here are two examples that I've previously posted:

    1) A large airport is close to my office, just over a small hill.
    Yesterday afternoon, I noticed a helicopter that appeared to be hovering over the runway, but no other air traffic.

    While standing at my office window, I opened an air traffic tracking app on my phone, identified the helicopter as belonging to a local TV station (including seeing its photograph), and received a video feed from the helicopter via the station's website.
    From the feed, I could watch workers repairing a runway light in extreme detail. I could even tell if the electrician was tightening or loosening bolts with his socket wrench.

    2) Not too long ago, my father had cataract surgery. A few months later, he said he was having difficulty reading the clock across the room.
    Upon examination, the eye doctor (a woman - this is the future, after all) noted that scar tissue had formed, and was obscuring the lens.

    I figured that delicate surgery would be required, and was concerned because my father's general health wasn't so great.
    The doctor pointed out that we could just go into the next room and have it quickly removed with the laser.

    Twenty minutes later, my father and I were eating lunch, his eyesight completely restored.
    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    While standing at my office window, I opened an air traffic tracking app on my phone, identified the helicopter as belonging to a local TV station (including seeing its photograph), and received a video feed from the helicopter via the station's website.
    From the feed, I could watch workers repairing a runway light in extreme detail. I could even tell if the electrician was tightening or loosening bolts with his socket wrench.
    I'm guessing it must have been a quiet news day for your local TV. Couldn't they find any wet paint to watch?

    Grant Hutchison

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    1969: omg, I'm watching people walk on the Moon!

    Today: Tired of seeing Mars landers take selfies. Is NASA still planning to land submarines on Titan, or what?

    Future: Tired of seeing Titan submarines take selfies!


    .
    Last edited by Roger E. Moore; 2018-Dec-14 at 05:34 PM.
    There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.
    — Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi (1883)

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    I'm guessing it must have been a quiet news day for your local TV. Couldn't they find any wet paint to watch?

    Grant Hutchison
    Apparently. I wondered to myself how much it cost to keep the helicopter there.

    In their defense, the broken light shut down the entire airport. The fixture was embedded at the intersection of the two major runways, and was apparently physically broken, not just burned out.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    Apparently. I wondered to myself how much it cost to keep the helicopter there.

    In their defense, the broken light shut down the entire airport. The fixture was embedded at the intersection of the two major runways, and was apparently physically broken, not just burned out.


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    A Mars lander kicked it after it got bored with taking selfies.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

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    Must every space robot take a selfie?

    Um, other than for diagnostic purposes, I mean.
    There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.
    — Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi (1883)

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    Yes, because it's the Age of Narcissism. It's an imperative that even our machines follow us into the abyss of self-absorption.
    Calm down, have some dip. - George Carlin

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    still waiting for VR

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    Must every space robot take a selfie?

    Um, other than for diagnostic purposes, I mean.
    It gives them something to post on their Twitter feeds.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    Every once in a while, I'm reminded that I live in the future.
    You don’t live in the future. But you will tomorrow.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    Every once in a while, I'm reminded that I live in the future.
    You don’t live in the future. But you will tomorrow.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    You don’t live in the future. But you will tomorrow.
    So, none of this has happened yet?
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
    Every mission makes our dreams reality
    And our destiny begins with you and me
    Through all space and time, the achievement of mankind
    As we sail the sea of discovery, on heroes’ wings we fly!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    Every once in a while, I'm reminded that I live in the future.
    Many things that would have been considered Science Fiction when I was a child are commonplace, but occasionally I'm caught off guard.
    Perhaps we can use this thread to post events where you have been reminded that you live in the future.
    I call them "science fiction moments" - times where I wonder if I somehow have wandered into a science fiction story. Sometimes they get a bit surrealistic, like watching a car heading out into space (which of course was similar to a scene in the movie Heavy Metal). Sometimes I've noticed that EVERY article on Ars Technica (or similar websites) on some days relates to subjects that would have been science fiction when I was younger. Just looking at the space exploration section, we have so many space missions going on it's hard to keep track of them all. There's so much that I'm used to that definitely would have been science fiction, but every now and then I take special notice of one or another item.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

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    There was a TV show called Life about an LAPD policeman who'd been framed for murder and was released after a successful lawsuit that included a multimillion-dollar settlement from the LAPD and his old job as a detective back. The character had spent ten years in prison; when he went in, cell phones were just starting to become common. He would routinely marvel at something that had become commonplace while he was in prison and say, "It's like living in the future." I get that feeling.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

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    The show Person Of Interest was about an AI able to surveil entire populations via computer, to find terrorists and criminals. In 2011 when the show was made, that was science fiction. Now it's chyron on CNN, doesn't even merit a full story.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

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    Quote Originally Posted by jackthelad View Post
    still waiting for VR
    We have a large VR space in our latest simulator, we use MR for maintenance of complex systems...the future is now.

    But the future is also now in much more subtle applications:
    -a soft cube that you can throw into the audience, containing a wireless mic that neither causes static nor does it amplify the wind sound. You do a presentation and somebody raises his hand? You just throw the mic-cube into his arms and listen.
    -A website that allows hundreds of people to cast a vote or answer/grade a question, instantly counted and displayed, without having to use any app or account but just going to a simple URL and entering a short code to start. Audience participation taken to the next level.
    -realtime translation subtitles while you are presenting.

    Presentation possibilities have changed quite a bit recently.

    I also like the "life finds a way" aspect of digital technology: I use a Windows batch file to send a text string to a Google cloud application that uses AI to generate spoken text without any sound recording at the source of it, gives it back to me as a base64 text file, which I send to a Linux terminal on the same Windows machine to give me back an MP3. Within 1 second.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    You don’t live in the future. But you will tomorrow.
    Someone told me that yesterday, but it doesn't seem to be true.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

    All moderation in purple - The rules

  18. #18
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    The latest graphics chip from NVidia contains 16.8 billion transistors. That is absolutely insane. Even more insane is this: we can make 16.8 billion transistors work together to solve extremely complex calculations in a fraction of a second, yet we cannot make two countries agree on how to define a "billion".

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    Someone told me that yesterday, but it doesn't seem to be true.
    How do you know? It’s not tomorrow yet, it’s still today.

  20. #20
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    At 11:30 PM you could cross a time zone boundary to 12:30 AM and then come back causing you to remember tomorrow.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    At 11:30 PM you could cross a time zone boundary to 12:30 AM and then come back causing you to remember tomorrow.
    For some reason I read that in John O’Hurley’s voice.


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    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    At 11:30 PM you could cross a time zone boundary to 12:30 AM and then come back causing you to remember tomorrow.
    I have on many occasions taken aeroplanes that landed before they took off.

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    Where I live the time zones tend to be a bit on the fat side to accomplish that.

  24. #24
    Well the eastern and Atlantic time zones border are just a few kilometers from here you can leave go over the border be an hour behind when you started and cross the border at the same time you left depending on which clock you are going by.

    Today my mother is about 100 km away doing some more shopping at Costco. they just called here to tell me they found her wallet, I gave them her cell and texted her, back in the old days it probably would of been another trip to get the wallet back.
    From the wilderness to the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    I have on many occasions taken aeroplanes that landed before they took off.
    Just what I was thinking, although I've only done it a couple of times.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  26. #26
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    Things that remind me I'm in the future:

    Many many decades ago (this may have been late 80's or early 90's), I remember my grandma had to have hip replacement surgery and the recovery had her laid up for months and months and even a year later she still walked with a limp. This is because in order to do the surgery they used to have to sever the quad muscle (along with quite a few other important things down there) which takes forever to heal. Just last year my mother also had hip replacement surgery and was walking with a walker the SAME DAY, just a few hours after her surgery AND said there was a noticeable reduction in pain. She came home the next day and within a week was walking with only a cane. Apparently they are now able to perform the surgery without cutting any muscles or ligaments at all, somehow they just push the muscle to the side with no damage to it. And, no more then 2 months after her surgery she was able to go skiing with us.

  27. #27
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    My wife's grandmother is a retired florist. Before being a florist, she used to work at Bell Aerosystems as secretary. She can spout off some of the most amazing things about various airplanes, rockets, etc. This makes her laugh because she really never cared about anything except being a florist. She knows very little about the aerospace industry but can remember filling out forms and typing some really odd letters.

    Apparently, the first jet pack flew past her window while she was filing really boring forms. That impressed her... a little.

    She is related to Clarence Darrow and met him when she was very young.

    Tomorrow I am going to her house and I will try to dig out more details of Bell Aerosystems and Clarence Darrow. She doesn't think either is too important, so I will like get a dissertation on flower arrangement for various seasons. She is totally trolling me, so I guess trolling is at least 89 years old.
    Solfe

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Just what I was thinking, although I've only done it a couple of times.
    East Asia to North America west coast is one popular way to do it, but there are others.

  29. #29
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    I'm reminded that I live in the future every day. I have lenses implanted in my eyes. I have a powerful computer in my pocket. Which is also a clock/camera/TV/phone/map etc.

    My Mom has artificial joints and a patch in her heart. My niece and nephew use laptops for their homework and think nothing of it. My sister can telecommute and her car can start itself by remote.

    How could I NOT know I live in the future?
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Solfe View Post
    My wife's grandmother is a retired florist. Before being a florist, she used to work at Bell Aerosystems as secretary. She can spout off some of the most amazing things about various airplanes, rockets, etc. This makes her laugh because she really never cared about anything except being a florist. She knows very little about the aerospace industry but can remember filling out forms and typing some really odd letters.

    Apparently, the first jet pack flew past her window while she was filing really boring forms. That impressed her... a little.

    She is related to Clarence Darrow and met him when she was very young.

    Tomorrow I am going to her house and I will try to dig out more details of Bell Aerosystems and Clarence Darrow. She doesn't think either is too important, so I will like get a dissertation on flower arrangement for various seasons. She is totally trolling me, so I guess trolling is at least 89 years old.
    Maybe you will inherit the wind. I know I shouldn't monkey around.
    From the wilderness to the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
    https://davidsuniverse.wordpress.com/

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