The march of progress
When I was 5, the coolest thing ever was my Transformers digital watch, with flip open Autobot symbol.
I remember when my dad bought a television which had remote control. You didn’t need to get up to change channels.
We could only dream of the advances we might see. And although at the age of five I expected flying cars by the 21st Century, the advances we have seen have taken me by surprise.
I can make a phonecall from anywhere. With the same device, I can fix my geographic location, and plan routes. I can point it at the sky and it will identify the stars. It accesses email, Facebook, Twitter the internet with an always on connection, constantly updating. And 25 years ago, I couldn’t have imagined what those things are.
My phone, viewed through the eyes of my younger self, seems like something out of Star Trek. Something that could only exist in fiction.
But it’s real. I’m using it to post this article (thanks to the very cool WordPress app I found).
This is why I don’t write Science Fiction. I lack the technological imagination to come up with a future world beyond what I would see in my own lifetime. I’ve tried before. I’ve created futures that exist centuries from now where computers are less advanced than Windows 7, with cruder touchscreen technology than an iPad. Ion drive was a new propulsion technology for my spacecraft; then I discovered we’ve built deep space probes which have ion drives all ready!
The present, the past, fantasy; these are all “safe”. But SF? I don’t know how SF authors manage to avoid making their stories seem dated.
Perhaps you’ll share some tips?