Thursday, 11 August 2011

An Observation Upon the Relevance of Science-Fiction

People often dismiss sci-fi as fantastic gobbledygook. If it's not their cup of tea, that is. But I am still impressed at the rate at which ideas from the realm of science fiction prove prophetic.

Many years ago I read a novella by Larry Niven in which the invention of teleportation, instant travel from one place to another in the time honoured "Star Trek" manner, leads to unforeseen social consequences. The novella is called "Flash Crowd". And the unforeseen consequences are that as soon as trouble "kicks off"... to use the current parlance.... mobs and criminals teleport into the site of the incident and the whole thing becomes a Flash Riot.

Of course we haven't managed teleporatation yet. But we do have mobile phones and instant messaging.

You get my drift?
Stranger than fiction... shmiction.

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