5.15.2005

 

Looking at Star Wars from a Robotic Nation perspective

With Episode 3 about to come out, I decided to re-watch the existing library of Star Wars films to get myself "Mentally Prepared." I was absolutely amazed at the number of anachronisms in the original Star Wars movie, and wrote them up in Watching Star Wars 28 years later.



I am not talking about the obvious things like "space ships make no noise in a vacuum." People have been talking about stuff like that for decades. What I am talking about are things that would be absolutely impossible in a society this advanced -- things that will be impossible even in our own society in just 20 or 30 years. Things like human soldiers wearing cotton cargo pants with matching shirts into battle, or the fact that the princess has to insert physical media into R2-D2:



Click here to read the article.

Comments:
Except didn't this happen, "A long long time ago, in a galaxy far far away"? ;)
 
My favorite silly moment is where R2-D2 plugs into the Death Star network with this big phallic-looking thing that spins around. I mean, it's one thing not to have wireless, but it's even worse not to have a cat-5 cable with an RJ-45 jack.
 
The article is really fun! By the way, how did you determine that the Star Wars society has developed the "ability to modify the human anatomy so that restrooms are no longer necessary"? Is this some sort of inference, or do you have direct evidence?

(I shudder at the concept of Wookie evidence for this concept, heheh.)
 
Although Star Wars remains one of my all-time favorite movies, I definitely agree!

Our popular science fiction has anthropomorphic biases because for millenia we could have such biases without being too far off base. These biases no longer work in a world rapidly heading toward the technological modification of the human animal and the emergence of new forms of intelligence.

I, Robot may have better robots, but the movie still got it all wrong. I read in a Popular Science article about the Technological Singularity that many former authors of science fiction have abandoned the genre because their imagination cannot keep up with the real world. Maybe the genre is dead.
 
I agree with most of the article, but have to differ on a few issues.

The basic reason is security. Why, as an intelligent robot, would I let all other robots know where I am? Try installing GPS tags on everyone, and you'll see how quickly intelligent humans are uninterested.

Further, requiring a hardware interface could be considered more secure.

Also, the reason they didn't destroy the escape-pod with the droids is that they were searching for Leia, not the Death Star plans. They didn't know the plans were stolen. With no life signs, Leia couldn't be on the ship.

Also, maybe Vader thinks the cape and heavy breathing aid his purposes with intimidation. It’s like a soulless robot, but worse because he’s evil. (ok, that’s a bit silly).

Also, Stormtroopers ride on those beasts because Lucas is an idiot revisionist :).
This one really annoys me because it wasn't made in 77, but in 99. Think about it: they either carry the beasts on board their ships for the random occasion of searching on foot on a desert planet, OR they decided to travel by local custom. Ridiculous.


I could go on to defend a few more things, but I won't because your points are basically valid. I can't wait until what we consider high-tech becomes anachronistic.
 
Looking for vagina anatomy info for my thesis I came across your post. It is interesting!!
 
Very nice site!
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