Welcome to the 21st Century

I have heard people say that hey would love to have lived in the renaissance, when all that new knowledge was being discovered, that it must have been such an interesting time. Perhaps. But please – this is the 21st Century, folks!

How many of you remember this from the movie Wayne’s World:

OK… First I’ll access the secret military spy satelite that is in geosynchronous orbit over the midwest. Then I’ll ID the limo by the vanity plate “MR. BIGGG” and get his approximate position. Then I’ll reposition the transmission dish on the remote truck to 17.32 degrees east, hit WESTAR 4 over the Atlantic, bounce the signal back into the aerosphere up to COMSAT 6, beam it back to SATCOM 2 transmitter number 137 and down on the dish on the back of Mr. Big’s limo… It’s almost too easy.

That was funny in 1992. But it is now two decades later, and what was amusing for its implausibility then has become the norm now. For example, I don’t have a thermometer at my house. Instead, I have a computer in my pocket (masquerading as a phone) that uses satellite data to locate itself, then accesses the internet wirelessly to look up the temperature (and weather for the next few days) in my location, all displayed on a high resolution hand-held screen. Why? Because it is easier than buying a thermometer!

Yes there are political and financial concerns (and, hey, there were none of those in the renaissance, right?). But the rate of technology is advancing so fast, we casually perform tasks that would have seemed magic a scant decade ago.

I, for one, am very happy to be living in this century.

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