May 24, 2023
Holidays dot the calendar all through the year. Some large, some small, some serious, and some just for fun. The month of May is no exception, with heartfelt commemorations like Teacher Appreciation Day (May 9 th ). But in the first week of the month, if someone said, “May the Fourth be With You,” they were observing Star Wars Day.
Star Wars Day is not a real holiday, of course, but turns May 4 th into a pun that fans of the Star Wars universe would recognize. While tongue-in-cheek, it’s a chance to think about technology and the ways technology springs from imagination.
Science fiction, going back to Mary Shelley’s 1818 novel “Frankenstein,” has often gone beyond pure entertainment and has predicted new technologies. The Star Wars films are a case in point. While lightsabers and hyperspace travel are still theoretical, artificial intelligence (AI) tools could make it practical to build useful droids. The discovery of exoplanets through the Hubble and Webb telescopes suggests that as in the Star Wars stories, a galaxy of inhabitable planets could exist. The challenge is time required to travel – if hyperdrive vehicles are ever perfected, we might be able to visit.
Like any technology, there will need to be standards to operate machines like AI-operated droids safely and reliably. The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) is an agency likely to draft standards in that category, and when they do, experienced laboratories like Elite will be prepared to perform the tests.
Science fiction has opened doors to ideas leading to devices we take for granted now. Comic-strip detective Dick Tracy started wearing a Two-Way Wrist Radio in 1946. Motorola Engineer Martin Cooper remembered seeing Tracy’s wrist radio in the comics. Inspired, Cooper went on to develop the first practical hand-held cellular telephone, which has evolved into the now-ubiquitous smartphone. The smartwatch, another wireless communication device, may as well been taken directly off the page of a Dick Tracy cartoon.
None of us knows what technology will be next to enter our lives, but when it does, safety and reliability will apply just they do now for any device. Testing will be necessary, and you can be sure that Elite will be ready.
Contact Elite’s experts to discuss testing your newest technology, and May the 4th be with you!