Friday 2013-05-24

It's 2013 and we still see bouts of angsty fin-de-siecle show me a non-obvious future complaints about mainstream media. While on the surface these complaints seem valid, there are a couple basic caveats that we have to work through.

1) A lot of movies today are franchise stories and have much historical baggage. E.g. in the latest Star Trek there's a reason that Kirk crawls into the warp reactor to kick it into working shape. With our technological sensibilities, we know that the real 23rd century equivalent would have just sent in a Fukushima-grade fixbot to correctly align the reactor core.

2) Most audiences are not computationally ready. I format my thoughts into a word stream which you can follow in a linear fashion. However, our brains are massively parallel, and we will likely take advantage of that. Showing that future to you today will hurt your brain because without training it's not easy to follow multiple narratives simultaneously. E.g., imagine watching two video feeds: one with rapid fire negotiations dialogue, the other with an FPS view of a building siege in progress and its attendant communication chatter; and both with the accompanying projections of logistics and coordination issues.

3) It will break current social conventions. E.g. do you remember the first time you came across someone using a hands-free cellphone? That level of disconcerting is mild compared to watching the interactions of parallel intelligences whose user interfaces have disappeared into their bodies.

Finally, instead of bitching about today's films, go make one; it's not like the costs of making a quick concept movie are prohibitively high.