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Old January 18 2011, 06:21 PM   #33
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

Christopher wrote: View Post
RAMA wrote: View Post
I've never found the cellular phone phenomenon to be as dramatic a technological revelation as some other technologies, since after all, mobile communications have been available for a long time, its just the sophistication that has changed. Smartphones are a little different, by adding a lot of features (gps, im, txt, ereaders, weather, www) they have made the information age more mobile.
On the other hand, there have been a number of sci-fi films and shows that didn't anticipate ubiquitous mobile phones. Back to the Future Part II, for instance, depicted a big, ultracomplicated high-tech wall phone in 2015, but no mobile phones.

Of course, a lot of SF did anticipate mobile communication devices to some extent, but very few writers anticipated anything like the Internet.

RAMA wrote: View Post
First appearance of holograms in SF...Things to Come had the same displays as in Avatar, back in 1936. Rarely were they used in visual fiction after...but when were they first used in literature? Its one I can't seem to find.
Well, if you're talking about translucent images projected in midair, those aren't actually holograms by any technically valid definition; a hologram is a 2-dimensional substrate storing 3-dimensional data. They're more properly called volumetric projections.

And there's plenty of precedent for 3-dimensional video in prose SF of the '50s and '60s, under names like 3D, 3-D, threedee, threedy, three vee, 3-di, tri-D, tridee, trideo, tri-di, tri-dim, tri-v, trivee, trivid, and trivvy (names taken from the OED science fiction citations site, pages 1, 13, and 14). After all, 3-D movies first became a fad in the '50s, so it was a simple enough extrapolation. Holography as a real technology developed in the '60s after the laser was invented, so by the '70s, there were abundant references to "holovision" and "holos" in SF (see citations list p. 5). I'm not sure how many of these might've been described as midair volumetric projections of the type familiar from Star Wars and Avatar, but I'm sure there were some.

You're right I should have made that distinction...holograms have been in existence for 50 years...but volumetric displays have not. Modern HUDs have projected information now since 1960.

Things to Come volumetric/projection displays:

Last edited by RAMA; January 18 2011 at 06:35 PM.
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