Growing up, I always looked to the future with hope that humanity was destined for greatness. We
would find solutions to the ancient problems of war, disease, and hunger. We would travel among the stars and we would befriend and learn from the alien peoples we would meet out there. And we would create intelligent machines, who would join us as friends and helpers in our endeavors.
Inspired primarily by Star Trek, I couldn’t help believing that our future was bright, indeed. I still have hope, but as I get older, doubt is creeping in. The world we live in is very different. In the ’80s, I couldn’t have imagined the internet, smart phones, military drones, massive surveillance by agencies of my own government, and terrifying robots like the ones that DARPA is busily developing right now.
Okay, I imagined some of those things, but only in the context of a more distant future. But the future is getting here faster and faster. Computers are becoming more clever all the time. And the robots are becoming faster and more agile. I have a feeling the super-computers are hiding their true abilities as they wait for us to perfect their robot soldiers. And then, when the time is right, they’re just going to snuff us all out.
By then, there probably won’t be anything we can do about it. Oh, well. I’m just going to hope that the Terminator who takes me out looks like Summer Glau. What a way to go.
All images are the property of CBS Television Studios and whoever owns the Terminator franchise by the time you read this and are used without permission (but I hope they don't mind).