We were doing some online shopping on Amazon recently and stumbled upon an add for a new gadget that they are selling. Both my wife and I looked at it, and at almost the same time said “Star Trek”. Yep they’ve done it again…
It’s kind of amazing when you look back upon that original show. Yes, it’s showing it’s age now, the special effects are kind of lame and the acting somewhat campy. But man did Ray Bradbury know what he was doing!
He liaised with some of the best minds of our time and spent many, many hours in discourse with NASA and numerous other scientists. He tried to make “Star Trek” as realistic and futuristic as he could. He succeeded beyond his wildest dreams!
He are just a few of the items that were completely fictional when the show came out, that have now become reality…
- The Tricorder – To be used in the 2009 Mars Rover
- Wireless Communications Headset – Bluetooth anyone..
- The 3″ data cube – The 3½ inch floppy data disk sure looked similar
- Data Crystals – USB flash drives in acrylic look pretty good
- Ion Drive – A deep space probe launched in 1998
- Food Replicator – Still waiting on this one, but they sure looked like Microwave Ovens!
- Invisibility Field – Stealth is here with lots of other exciting things happening here!
- Transporter – Tiny steps lead to bigger things in future!
- Communicator – Now-a-days called a cell phone
- Talking Computers – Hello!
- Automatic Sliding Doors – Been to a shopping centre lately?
- Phasers – We have lasers and tazers , but a lot more is coming soon.
- Photon Torpedoes – Little baby ones right now…
- Laser Cannon – It’s out there now!
- Antigravity – We’ve been looking for this for a while – including NASA
- Antimatter Propulsion – Well NASA is looking at it
- Touch Screens – Been to a banking machine lately?
- Large flat screen display – check out your neighbors home theater!
- The Hypo Gun/Spray – Many different ones out there – plus patches!
And now we have Yeoman Rand’s logbook, sure a portable computer pad would have to put it in the list but we never saw the Yeoman using it as a computer. It always seemed more like a document holder viewer and it was very easy to hold. I think Amazon’s Kindle matches the function much more closely!
Here is how Amazon describes it…
The Amazon Kindle is a revolutionary portable reader that wirelessly downloads books, newspapers, magazines and blogs to a crisp, high-resolution electronic paper display that looks and reads like real paper, even in bright sunlight.
Sounds to me like something very similar (in both looks and function) to what she was always handing the Captain to review. Curious? Here is a bit more from Amazon about what you can do with it.
Kindle customers, no matter where they are in the U.S., can wirelessly shop the Kindle Store and download new content all without a PC or a WiFi hot spot. Amazon pays for Kindles wireless connectivity so there are no monthly wireless bills and no service commitments for customers. The Kindle Store contains over 90,000 books that can be purchased and delivered wirelessly to Kindle, each in less than a minute. Customers can choose from hundreds of top newspapers, magazines and blogs and have their subscriptions auto-delivered wirelessly. All New York Times Best Sellers and New Releases are $9.99, unless marked otherwise. At 10.3 ounces, Kindle is lighter and thinner than a paperback book, carries two hundred books, and includes built-in access to The New Oxford American Dictionary and wireless access to the Earths biggest encyclopedia, Wikipedia.org.
When you combine this little gadget with what they are doing over at Project Gutenberg and other sites, it makes it a win win device for the common man. The Kindle apparently also has an SD card slot for you to add and save other documents as you see fit. I could reduce my dozen or so bookshelves onto one or two memory sticks – wow!
Don’t get your hopes up about getting one of these for Christmas (unless your partner – or you – were really on the ball) as they are flying off the shelves faster than Amazon can get them in! That being said they recommend that you order it as soon as possible as they will be shipping them out first come, first served. So the sooner you put your name down for one, the quicker you’ll get it.
Hey, before I close, if you happen to know of any other technological spin-offs from Star Trek let me know. I’ll add it to the list! As for the Kindle… I’m hoping my wife was on the ball and noticed me drooling….