As far as Science Fiction can take us, I’m just hoping that the school of History will abolish the draconian hard-copy and enter the digital age, so I don’t have to use those hallowed objects we call stationary anymore. In a wider, more imaginative sense though, I’d like to see a number of things. First off, I want some driverless cars up in here. Uber is great, but I’d rather talk to Jarvis than Stephen from Jarrow for 10 minutes, so let’s get that going.
I want to see cars with the booming’ system. Top down, AC, with the cooling system. Let’s revolutionize the way we get to our nights out, right? Spotify voice control, cigars on ice, the whole nine yards. And when we get there, I want some sort of system that makes a shit DJ obsolete. I’m talking personalised headphones, or a voice controlled request system, wearable tech where you vote for the next song. Let’s please the room and create some quality atmosphere. I don’t want to wait all night in Dirty pop for them to play Mr Brightside, OK? And robot bartenders of course, so you don’t get stiffed on your treble measures.
For the past year I’ve been keeping close tabs on scientific and technological developments, and now I’m convinced that nothing is impossible. Just in the past two weeks we’ve heard of computers installed in people’s eyes and delivery drones. So while it’s my last semester in Newcastle, there is one thing that would revolutionize studying experience, if not the world.
Learning while sleeping. I realize that it’s not a new idea, but it’s definitely underdeveloped. Imagine going to sleep with headphones on, listening to ReCap in your sleep, and then waking up knowing word for word what happened in the lecture- whether it’s Foucault’s surveillance model, mollecular structure of a cell or German past tenses. Wouldn’t that be wonderful? Instead of hours in the Robbo, you put on your jammies and make sure to sleep eight hours a day. Instead of frantic last-minute note-browsing, you take a nap. Instead of forcing yourself to find any sense in a dense French philosophical text, you get an audiobook and doze off. Robbo would have them all- all books and journal articles condensed into two versions- 30 minute nap to give you an idea what it is about and 8 hour sleep to make you a master of the topic. So much less stress, so much more sleep (and sleep is so good for you!), and plenty more free time during day. I can see it changing the world.
As an incredibly lazy (and I mean incredibly lazy) student, I’m looking to the far future, where sci-fi meets scientific developments and teleporting could become reality. Why on earth would we walk anywhere, if we could just hop on to teleport pads on campus?
Imagine them, instantly transporting us to other buildings; to the library; to the Courier office; even to the Caffe Nero down the road which has become a favourite haunt. And they’d solve problems with accesibility, too. Wheelchair? No problem! Visually impaired? It’s fine, no worries. Broke a leg doing something stupid whilst inebriated? We’ve got your back.
There may be teething problems, initially. I’m thinking of the Knockturn Alley fiasco in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets - no-one wants to end up in the library when they were aiming for a Greggs.
Never again would I be late for a lecture or seminar. Rolling out of bed at quarter to the beginning of my lecture would be an absolute dream come true. Let it not be said that I don’t dream big, kids.