How Mass Effect Predicted The Future Of Real World
After all, the Mass Effect trilogy had some interesting ideas on what the future would be like, and it’s worth remembering that when the first game released, it was a seriously different world. Youtube was just a year old, and everyone still had a MySpace profile. Even things like tablets had yet to reach a massive audience, despite them being a sci-fi staple.
Private Companies Own Space
Victor Manswell is probably the most important character in Mass Effect that you’ve never heard of. He was the billionaire who, annoyed at the slow pace of the government’s space program, invested his own dosh into space exploration.
Opening up this state monopoly would eventually mean corporate competition would drive technological advancements – and set a precedent in the galaxy that gave private companies like ExoGeni and Eldfell-Ashland the opportunity to buy up space. Thar’s gold in them thar planets.
Manswell’s expedition occurred around a hundred years before the events of Mass Effect, before all those fancy Mass Relays were discovered. Manswell was just a dude with a dream, a healthy bank balance, and 300 followers desperate to get off this damn rock and colonise another planet.
Basically, this guy was Elon Musk.
You know the guy – not only does the billionaire businessman own Tesla, he’s also heavily invested in SpaceX. That’s the company determined – at huge expense – to create re-usable rocket ships, which will eventually make space travel cheaper and easier for everyone. If we ever colonise Mars, you can be sure that Musk and SpaceX will be there laying the first foundations.
He’s different from Victor Manswell in only one way: Musk’s charisma has afforded him way more than 300 loyal fans who’d follow him into the space.
Healing in video games needs to be quick and, ironically, painless. But when Bioware created the concept of medi-gel, did they know just how prescient they were being?
So medi-gel is a medicinal salve that can cure pretty much every type of injury except death. It has the power to clot the blood of open wounds, and anaesthetises the surrounding area. Just whack a pack where it hurts and you’ll be back fighting alien cultists before you know it.
Veti-Gel, launched just two years ago, is a plant-based medicinal salve that heals wounds and stops the bleeding in about 10 seconds. Place the gel over the wound and voila, you’ll be back not fighting alien cultists (but you can now have tea with your mother…). The end-goal here is to sell Veti-Gel products to hospitals and the military.
Which is basically medi-gel, just as Mass Effect predicted.
For years, drones were the preserve of the military. They clung to UAVs like a jealous girlfriend in a strip bar. They wanted them all for themselves – so don’t even look at it, ok?
Then something happened in the last couple of years: Advancing technology and decreased production costs meant you could now buy a basic drone in a toy shop – right next to the Lego DeLorean and the Batman action figures. Online shopping retailers want to ship parcels using them; it’s not uncommon to see new footage on TV filmed high above the sky by drones.
Exactly as Mass Effect predicted.
Remember Khalisah al-Jilani? She’s the reporter fan-girling over Shepard over at C-Sec Academy. Only, turns out she’s taken lessons in Lying Journalist Tropes 101 and her devious objective is to prove Shepard is shilling for the human-hating Citadel Council. But what’s that filming her? It certainly ain’t a cameraman (somebody call his union).
Instead, al-Jilani is followed around by a drone with a camera attachment to record her interviews. While rolling news uses footage captured from drones, usually in war zones and disaster areas because both of those make great TV, apparently. It’s just a matter of time before they’re deployed on the ground by roving reporters who need to be quickly deployed.
Once again, Mass Effect looked at existing technology, and saw potential for wide-spread application.
AI – alongside its stupider counterpart, VI (virtual intelligence) and general intelligence (GI), which is way smarter than both – litters the world of Mass Effect. And now it’s started littering ours, too.
We’re only two months in, and already AI is 2017’s buzzword. Companies are rapidly jumping on the artificial intelligence bandwagon, developing ideas like chat-bots and machines that can diagnose illnesses without human intervention. Then there’s Bill Gates and Stephen Hawking warning us about the perils of AI.
We’re basically living on the cusp of a sci-fi future, and it could go either way. But Mass Effect got there first (sort of).
Want to know about the Citadel? Ask holographic VI interface, Avina. Want to control a spacecraft through voice activation? Install the mega-smart computer EDI. Creating an army of semi-sentient slaves that will one day become self-aware and rise up against you?
Ladies and gentlemen, introducing… The Geth. Or, in our world: Amazon’s Alexa (or Siri, or Cortana, or that fridge that tells you when you need to buy more milk).
Source – Whatculture
#How Mass Effect Predicted The Future Of Real World