George Jetson will be born this year.
The year is 2022. It can feel like we’re going back in time with cultural movements and heavy exposure to social media; it seems like the world is coming to an end. What if it was all predicted? When people dream of the future, they often think about robots controlling the world and flying cars, but what if the future is now? Sixty years ago, ABC released a television show that was that 100 years in the future: the Jetsons. The main character, George Jetson, had been born far into the future--2022. It is outlandish to think that we are living in his lifetime. I am only 20-years-old, but I partly watched the show.
today’s soon-predicted future
The Jetsons predicted a future of the symbiotic relationship between humans and technology. The show was a comical version of wild robot contraptions, aliens, holograms, and their world technology. The Jetsons captivated audiences by being the first program to broadcast in color on ABC.
They became a staple of Saturday morning cartoons. The Jetsons resided in Orbit City with architecture that rose above their polluted world. They needed to escape the environmental tragedies of their environment, likely similar to the outcome of today’s soon-predicted future. CREDIT: PHOTO
George, the father, a dog Astro, his wife, Jane, teenage daughter, Judy, and their son, Elroy, resided together. The show took a comedic stance on how technology could cause chaos. In 1962, during the run of the show, only landline communication existed in the real world.
the maid robot, Rosie
However, the Jetsons did not anticipate where we would be today. Many of their appliances performed only one duty. We have one device that serves multiple purposes and provides multiple forms of communication.
Many of us wish for our own Rosie. Rosie worked her tail off to make sure the Jetsons' daily lives ran most efficiently. We may not have a Rosie, but we do have Roomba, a vacuum cleaner robots that has a docking station to recharge and complete scheduled cleanings.
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The Jetsons had a different idea of communication. Far superior to a landline phone, they had video phones. Today we would just call it video chat. Video chat technology has gone through many renditions. It is one of our favorites. In high school I would pick up the phone to video chat with someone just to have a nonsense conversation. The Jetsons also had a TV-size broadcast communicator, whereas today we have cell phones.
In the television show, they were set on Android styled design. Their technology was not only aware, it was personified. Our current technology, maybe besides giving our cats rides around the house, doesn't provide companionship.
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FOOD CREDIT: PHOTO
Even with food, the Jetsons had it right! In the 60s, it was typical for families to take on social roles; Jane was head of the kitchen. She had a spectacular vending machine, whipping up anything. No one has this contraption today, but we do have microwaves, and inventors are working hard to create 3-D printed food. Pizza ATMs are vending machines that can pump out any type of pizza you choose. Close, but not there yet.
With the "Internet of things," our homes are more connected than ever before. Our refrigerators and frying pans have temperature sensors, and crockpots connect to our phones and tell us when our food is finished. With the emergence of smart kitchen technology, we’re almost to the future of pressing a couple of buttons to get any type of meal.
With travel, we are at a paper-thin wall to the Jetsons. AI is all around us and it is hard to believe that flying cars and tube travel are far in the future. Although we do not have those capabilities, we do have a company named Tesla giving us the first commercial self-driving cars. It is the limitations of AI that have given us a setback. Creating a self-driving car is a tremendous task. CREDIT: PHOTO
Vehicles must be able to see the world and identify what they are saying. Making a vehicle conscious of its surroundings is easier said than done.
The Loop v. Tube Travel
Our world is unpredictable, so creating a computer that relies on predictions is very difficult. Tube travel is farther out than the technology we have today. We have elevators, and deep tunnel systems and with our age of public transportation it is a probable future. Shanghai Maglev, located in China, is currently the fastest train traveling at 267 mph. CREDIT: PHOTO
High speed SAFE travel is the hope with tunnel technology and self-driving cars. A cross-country trip won’t take two days anymore if this becomes a reality.
dystopia or utopia
It does not sound like robots are going to be controlling the world soon, but with cell phone addictions it’s hard to think otherwise. I predict that inventors will not let technology harm humans directly. It is easy to be upset about the future because potentially there will be so many negatives.
Internet is Only 37 Years Old
Think positively. Maybe in 40 years, when our timeline and the Jetsons' timeline verge, everything will look different, even predicted. The Internet is only 37 years old, and we have come this far in a short period.