So I’m sitting here at my computer, watching Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (because I’m a horror movie buff and Freddy Kreuger is one of my favorite supernatural movie villains), and because my brain sometimes goes off on tangents I started thinking about how I’d explain this sort of technology to someone from the past. Let’s say, oh, someone from 1508. How could you possibly explain to someone from back then that while I’m watching a moving picture on this box in front of me that I’m also writing up this screed which will also be viewed by maybe half a dozen people around the world? Ten years ago the technology wasn’t that different; watching movies on a computer wasn’t that inconceivable, and blogging was around (though back then I believe it was called “online journaling”). Twenty years ago the Internet wasn’t a household commodity but computers were widespread enough so that people could appreciate possible future directions. But five hundred years ago? Heck, indoor plumbing would be hard to explain.
Of course, the flip side of this question is obvious: what technologies will be around and commonplace five hundred years from now that we of the the 21st century would find inconceivable? Every time I try to come up with some brainbreaking technology of the future, it only ends up being an extension of modern technology. ((This, by the way, is one reason why I don’t put a whole lot of stock in the notion of the Singularity. The Singularity is here, and has been for a few hundred years.))
What are your thoughts? Assuming the human race is still around in five hundred years, what are some mindblowing technologies that would seem impossible or even unimaginable to us today/?