Nanotech in the Holodeck
My freshman year of college I took a screenwriting course with an instructor who worked as a writer on some of the Star Trek Holodeck episodes. I believe he just wrote some of the first drafts of a couple of episodes. It nonetheless bumped up his cool factor with me.
For those who might know, A holodeck is a hypothetical virtual reality simulation room that is often featured in science fiction stories, particularly in the Star Trek franchise. In the Star Trek universe, holodecks are advanced technologies that are used to create realistic, three-dimensional simulations of environments, objects, and people.
The way that a holodeck works is not fully explained in Star Trek, but it’s generally assumed to use some combination of advanced computer technology, holographic projection, and force fields to create the simulated environments and objects. Users can interact with the simulations as if they were real, and the holodeck can even create the sensation of touch, temperature, and other physical sensations.
Holodecks are often used for entertainment, training, and education, and they can simulate a wide range of environments, including historical settings, fantasy worlds, and futuristic cities. They can also be used to create simulations of real people or fictional characters for users to interact with, and they can even be programmed to present challenges or obstacles for users to overcome.
I never really enjoyed the Holodeck episodes. However, I think I’ve wanted my own personal once since the first time I saw Captain Riker step from the hallway of the Enterprise and into the world of Sherlock Holmes.
The problem I always had with the holodeck is that the rooms seemed so small. It never made sense to me. And I never quite understood the concept of holomater, which is a fake form of matter held together and controlled by force fields. But I do think if the idea of the holodeck were conceived today, the writers would have just used shape-shifting nanotech as the primary method for creating the worlds within the holodeck. Or they would be virtual worlds that we just plug our brains into.
Which leads me to the SciFi idea of the day:
There’s lots of talk about nanotechnology taking over the world when small microscopic robots learn to self replicated. I think it’s all terrifying… But if we’re already at a point where we’re creating virtual worlds in Minecraft, with virtually no boundaries, what happens when someone creates a tangible 3d pixel that can self-replicate? We could have entire worlds that are formed or destroyed on a whim. Want a nicer home? Just program it. And put a real beach in the bathroom. Just make sure your house doesn’t get hacked.
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