Oscar Wilde used the phrase “Life imitates art” way back in 1889. He could not have known that this was to be proved correct by a comic science fiction film in the late 80’s.
Back to the Future Part II is a movie that many of us remember watching back in 1989. The film was praised, at the time, for its studio effects and digital compositing. The film went on to gross over $331 million worldwide – the third highest-grossing film of the year.
The film also gave us half a dozen predictions, within its plot, that have now become a reality:
Hoverboards – the Japanese company Lexus have unveiled a rideable hoverboard so we can emulate Marty (Michael J Fox).
Technology that you wear – in the film, children are seen wearing headsets to make/receive calls and watch TV. Google Glass was introduced back in 2013 and a new product from Microsoft looks much like the goggles in the movie.
Video calls – it seemed like something unbelievable at the time, but with Skype and FaceTime now readily available, video calls are part of everyday life, not just a business tool.
Hands-free gaming – a scene in the film sees kids in the future mocking Marty for using his hands to play an arcade game. The Xbox Kinect-style gaming system proves how right they were!
Tablet computers – Doc (Christopher Lloyd) is often seen using an iPad-style tablet in the film. Today, tablets are everywhere – 233 million units are expected to be sold this year – 8% up from 2014.
Self-tying shoes - one of the weirdest parts of the film were Marty’s self-tying trainers. Designers at Nike have confirmed that a version of the shoe with self-tying laces will be ready for sale at the end of 2015.
So more than a quarter of a century after the film was released, we are seeing technology catch up with science fiction.
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