Another bullet point on my ever-growing list of why television is much better than reality is because you can change the channel. And by this, I mean that if something you are viewing on TV is boring, annoying, hurtful, or platitudinous, a completely new channel is only a click away; something you sadly can’t do in real life. Of course, there is no promising that these new channels will possess infinite treasures and entertainment, in which case you end up watching General Hospital.
This happened to me Saturday afternoon at my mom’s house. My regular channels that I depend on for amusement (MYV, Vh1, Comedy Central, Spike TV, etc.) where horrible: MTV was showing NEXT, Comedy Central was playing some movie, and Spike TV seemed to just be on a half hour break of advertising. At this point, most kids would have turned off the TV and gone out to play. But not me. Instead, I flipped through all my channels two or three times until I landed on something worth watching. The show? Year 2057. Unfortunately, it was on the discovery channel, but I decided to ignore that fact by taping duct tape over the logo.
The film itself was very poorly put together. The basic ideas they were trying to get through was all the neat things we’ll be living with in the year 2057, fifty years from now. I would have enjoyed the show much more if they simply forced scientists to list us technological breakthroughs. Instead, they turned it into a plot line of a “Future Catastrophe” that would end life on earth as we know it, and how the complex technology we have will be able to help us. I won’t sentence you to the plot of the story, and instead I will touch upon the advancements they predict for the future, like self-driven cars.
Let me start by pointing out that we will never drive self-driving cars, because the computer that control them will malfunction and try to kill us; my example being the movie I Robot. If anything we will be operating flying cars, otherwise the world will be covered in asphalt. And don’t think that I’m some tree-hugging, animal-saving faggot, because I’m not. If it was up to me, Hummers will be driving on the asphalt covered world.
For years, scientists have been trying very very very very hard to study something more interesting. Take it from me, science is boring. I have to sit through 55 minutes of it every day (except M day, where I have to sit through 2 hours of it) and I know that there is never going to be any entertainment in DNA and “Continental Movement.” In order to excite up their senseless, interminable, World Of Warcraft-playing lives, they decided to study something with a little more “pizzazz,” like self-driving cars. But deep down inside they know that there will never be self driving cars, because they have seen I Robot.
According to these scientists, in fifty years we will be able to tell our cars our destination, sit back, and relax as it flawlessly transports us. They say that this form of conveyance will speed up long trips, reduce car crashes, and eliminate traffic jams (with the exception of Los Angeles, where it will still be impossible to back out of your driveway without causing a 284 car pileup).
How the hell will cars be able to know where they’re going if we’re not steering them?
The highly sophisticated and adept scientists explained many different ways to program self-steering cars, all of which involved large words and complicated computer graphics. One example was that the cars would work in synchronization with the road, each communicating to the other through billions of microchips in the tires and asphalt. This would enable the street to keep track of all the cars and prevent them from crashing. Also, the street would be able to map out the shortest distance from your starting location to your end point, allowing you to get there faster and without the misdirection of Mapquest.com. The only downside to this idea is the voice recognition feature, claiming that you can state your destination, and your car will know where to go. My main example for this not working is my cell phone.
My cell phone, a Motorola Razr, has a neat little facet called “VoiceSignal” in which I say the name of the person I want to call and the phone recognizes my voice and calls them. The only problem with this is that my phone never recognizes my voice. Regardless of what I say, my phone always offers to call “Jenny” or “Tyler,” and keeps guessing all my contacts until I say “yes,” in which case it just stops working:
Me– Call Stephanie
Phone– Did you say, Call Sophie?
Phone– Did you say, Call Peter
Phone– Did you say, Call Lindsey?
Phone– Did you say, Call Stephanie?
Phone– Did you say, Call Nate?
Me– No! Go back!
Phone– Did you say, Call Thomas?
If my phone can’t even recognize my contacts, then how is a car supposed to distinguish the difference between destinations? And Lord knows we don’t want to say “Beer Pub” and wind up at a Queer Club.
Me– Destination T.J. Max
Car– Did you say, Destination Radio Shack?
Me– No. I said Destination T.J. Max
Car– Did you say, Destination Max’s house?
Car– DOES NOT COMPUTE
However, I’m not saying that owning a self-steering car would be a bad thing. It would be beautiful to be able to cruise down the highway at 100 miles an hour (my car will be an aggressive driver) eating chips and drinking soda. And on long trips I would be able to sit in the back seat with my kids and watch movies, given it’s not I Robot.
Speaking of kids, parenthood in fifty years is supposed to be much similar than it is today. Not only will there be more advanced methods of ferociously beating them, but you will be assisted by robots to care for them. These robots will change their diaper, feed them, pick them up from school, and even love them more than you do. Over the years, scientists and engineers have been working together in taking robots to the next level by recognizing certain things and distinguishing them from others. This way, instead of having to be programmed, robots will be able to learn how to overthrow the human race. But don’t worry; your kid will be in bed at 7:00 every night.
Of course, with every technologically advancement, there are always douche bags who want to ruin it for everyone (also known as principals). This show make it very clear that even though our society will be more laid back and relaxed because robots will be doing all our labor, we will still have to worry about—brace yourself—computer viruses. Considering the fact that in fifty years we will be surrounded by computers and wires and AIDS, viruses other cyber threats will play a large part in our life, especially the one they showed in the crappy skit on TV.
According to the “movie,” America’s firewalls will advance so quickly, that old viruses will be able to hack into the system without detection. If a simple virus manages to shut down a busy highway, robotic factory, or—worse case scenario—local strip club, all work would cease until the virus could be terminated. As with advanced technology, the virus affects could rage from simple power outs, to—again, worse case scenario—Fall Out Boy songs. Depending on the seriousness of the virus, these symptoms could last from days to weeks to months, leading to deaths, damage charges, lost information, and—once again, worse case scenario—Hillary Clinton becoming president.
I have learned a lot about the future based upon that show; mainly that we have set our expectations way too high. Watch, I bet by the year 2057 we will still be driving to work, doing our own manual labor, and getting annoying junk mail. Our hope is that their will be something good on TV.