Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Don't Blame Doc Brown

Already I'm hearing comments on the Internet, and even in person, from people saying, "Back to the Future was full of crap! It's almost 2015 and nothing has come true like the movies". Did you ever stop to think that maybe it's for a good reason (other than "Back to the Future" is a movie)? I thought about this today (maybe for too long) and came up with a few answers as to why none of this has happened..and don't you dare blame Doc Brown.

First, anyone who is a sci-fi geek like I am can tell you that anything dealing with the future is an uncertainty from the word "go". While many theories exist of how time travel can occur, many agree that events that happen in the past directly affect how the future plays out. Anyone with foreknowledge of those events and means of time travel can affect the outcome. Even such a thing as killing a butterfly in the past can affect future events on a grand scale (see "the butterfly effect" on Wikipedia or elsewhere). It's very possible that Marty McFly's adventures in the future and past could have affected timelines and events so much that those displayed in the movie never occurred. Nothing shown there appears to be a "fixed point" in time, or something so pivotal to time itself that nothing can alter it. Still, not knowing how the years played out between 1985 and 2015, all of this technology could still develop sometime in the next three years. I still find it hard to believe, though, that fifteen more Jaws movies could happen between now and then. Please, for the love of Spielberg, don't let that happen.

Another theory that has just as much sci-fi goodness as the last one is that the "Back to the Future" trilogy occurred in an alternate universe. Although I don't claim to fully understand physics, some scientists are of the belief that there are universes just out of phase with our own, some with Earths having subtle differences, others having drastically different characteristics. For example, in one universe I'm writing this blog about "Back to the Future" starring Eric Stoltz (see Wikipedia info on the original screen tests). In yet another universe, I'm not writing a blog at all because electricity hasn't been invented. See how that works? Imagine a possible outcome and *BOOM* it's another universe. Want to really blow your mind? That universe both existed AND didn't exist until you thought of it. It was real AND not real simultaneously. Read up on Schroedinger's cat for more info on that bit of mind-screwing. So to recap this theory, somewhere in another universe, Marty McFly and Doc Brown are real people having real adventures.

Last, but not least, is an idea that my friend Kris thought of today, something that I hadn't considered. The technology in the movie is indeed possible RIGHT NOW, but the government doesn't want you to know about it. Yeah, I me for a straitjacket and lock me in a padded room with Fox Mulder and the Lone Gunmen (which, by the way, would be a kick-ass nerd band name). Call me a government conspirist, but I think this is totally possible. Think about it for a second with the biggest, most important technological advancement of the movies (other than time travel): FLYING CARS. Can you imagine the repercussions this would have? Citizens would all have to pass different exams to drive/fly a car. Different safety upgrades would be made for all new vehicles. Older cars would be retrofitted with this technology and THOSE cars would need to be upgraded for safety. Companies like those in the tire industry would have financial loss (why replace tires when you don't need them except for takeoff and landing?). Buildings would needed to be upgraded for safety, possibly with each including a member of Air Traffic Control, to navigate vehicles safely around them. We'd constantly have to be on the lookout for Jihadists trying to fly their explosive-laden cars into structures. Do you see the problems this causes? And that's just ONE upgrade and advancement in technology. The government probably has this stuff hidden in Area 51 with the rest of the alien technology it has captured over the years (again with the conspiracy!) but refuses to release it because of the myriad of issues that would ensue upon its release.

There may be more reasons that the "Back to the Future" trilogy hasn't come true, but I think these are three pretty good reasons why we don't see it happening in 2012 (or 2015 for that matter). I may not be able to fly my Honda Accord to work using the scraps from last night's dinner, take a leisurely ride through the park on my hoverboard, or take in a matinee of Jaws 19, but I take a minute to appreciate what I can do and what I do have. In the amount of time mankind has been living on this Earth, we've accomplished some great advancements. In an even shorter span of time those advancements have increased exponentially. If you think it hasn't, look at the smart phone you most likely carry on your hip or in your pocket. Such a thing wasn't even a reality for the general public ten short years ago. That should put some things in perspective.

So, please don't blame Doc Brown, Marty McFly, or any of the other characters (well, maybe Biff) for a near future that doesn't resemble the movie. Instead, be excited for what could possibly be even better than what the movie predicted. Look forward to what lies ahead down the road. Wait..."Roads? Where we're going we don't need roads." Yeah, that still may be a possibility :)

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