Future Technology We Can Expect To Be Inspired By Films

While the Star Wars universe may outdate us by millennia – let’s not forget it did happen “a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away” – the technology developed in George Lucas’ fantasy worlds is unquestionably something we’re striving to achieve ourselves.

We’ve all dreamed of having our own R2-D2 to chat with or a lightsaber to help us threaten our rivals, but how close are we to actually achieving these unfathomable innovations?

Droids

From the peaceful C-3P0 and R2-D2, to the battle droids of the prequel saga, droids play an important part in the Star Wars franchise. These free-thinking and free-moving electrical appliances are some of the most advanced we’ve seen on the silver screen, with distinct individual personalities and mannerisms.

Asimo ASIMO

Right now, the closest thing we have to them is the Honda-produced ASIMO robot. This chap represents just how far we've come to making the ambition of artificial intelligence a reality, and is able to:

Walk Run Climb Dance

The intention is for ASIMO to be used as a helper robot as his advancement progresses.

How close are we to the movie?

It’s expected to take another 25-50 years for robotics to develop to the point where ‘droids’ in their true form are manufactured on a commercial basis. Not too long to wait.

Holograms

When ‘A New Hope’ burst onto cinema screens back in 1977, the idea of projected images displaying a full body image of a person was the stuff of dreams. The tech was used not only to make calls, but also to play games of chess (and, we’re assuming, other such board games).

Amazingly, in just the 40-or-so years since the movie was released, we’ve been able to invent devices which project holographic images via the touch of our fingers onto the screen of a phone or tablet.

It’s become so commonplace in the 21st century, most people don’t even appreciate how far tech has come in such a short time.

How close are we to the movie?

Holograph Keyboard Holographic Keyboard

Not far off, as you might have already guessed. We already have the aforementioned holographic keyboards, but it’s expected full-blown holo-projections are themselves just two years away from being commercially available.

Lightsabers

This gadget is unquestionably the coolest weapon not only in Sci-Fi, but in movies as a whole; the lightsaber has been the awe of both young and old across the globe since its conception back in the 70s.

These devices see pure beams of light energy pierce out of a metal hilt and miraculously hang in the air to form the point of a blade. Coming in a variety of colours, these bright and vibrant weapons were wielded by both good and bad guys alike in the films.

How close are we to the movie?

Nowhere near. While we have high-powered lasers which can cut through metal, we’ve no idea how to harness light to make it stop in mid-air.

That aside, we’re also no closer to finding out how such an extreme level of power can be provided within a tiny metal holster. Ultimately, it could be as many as thousands of years before we master this one.

Other Sci-Fi Tech

It’s not just Star Wars which has given us fun tech to try and emulate, however.

Future Technology From Films

Here are a few more sci-fi gizmos which we’re trying to perfect in our contemporary lives.

  • Lightspeed Travel (Star Trek) – 10,000+ years away

  • Self-driving cars (Minority Report) – 5-10 years away

  • Sentient operating systems (Her) – 10-25 years away

  • Learning by downloading information directly to the brain (Matrix) – 100-200 years away

  • Living on spaceships (Blake 7) – 10 years away

Excited about the prospect of how close some of these technological advancements are?

In a matter of decades, we could well be living lives akin to the likes of Luke Skywalker and Han Solo. Hard to imagine, as recently as a few decades ago.

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