1. Andreas
    Offline

    Andreas New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    1

    Futuristic world - amount of technology

    Discussion in 'Setting Development' started by Andreas, Sep 27, 2015.

    Hey there everyone!

    I am currently writing a sci-fi story, and just wanted your opinions. It will be set somewhere around 2150, but how much technology would be realistic? What do you guys think? Would kids have dropped school to be loaded with information from chips in their pillows over night? Or would the world be a slightly "modern" version of today?

    Thanks!
     
    _AB likes this.
  2. Emberi Homa
    Offline

    Emberi Homa New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2015
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    6
    There is no correct answer to your question. What you're trying to do is called “world building”, which is pretty much determined by the author's creative mind and ability to explain the rules and laws of the world they have created.

    Questions: What is the goal of your story? What type of world would you most enjoy writing about?

    Knowing the answers to those questions may help you decide what you want to do. Some things that might also help you are as follows:

    1) 2150 is 135 years after 2015. You can compare this to the technological difference between the present and 1880. Some light research into the kinds of technologies coming out in the late 1800s and now might give you an idea for how advanced you want your world to be.

    2) Is there a technology boom, or even a technology stagnation, between 2015 and your futuristic world? What are the major historical events you want to create between 2015 and 2105? For instance, War is known to speed up the creation of technology as opposing sides struggle to outperform and win against each other.

    3) Building off of a point from question 2: Perhaps the focus of technological growth (ie. technology of convenience like the Iphone, and technology of necessity like genetically modified seeds) has shifted in your world based on events that have/are happening.

    Things like technology going wrong (Robots become evil in 2120!) in your world may even stigmatize certain technologies and their advancements. Or, perhaps technology has become so streamlined into your world's way of living that your characters have a totally different philosophy than in our day and age (our ancestors might have just wanted to survive, while someone in the 1960s dreamed of going to the moon!).

    When you write a story, you want to know a lot about your characters and their world. You don't need to kill yourself with all the little details, but it's good to know more about your world than you'll ever write in your story. For example, you might know there was a famine in 2030 that created the need for better transportation and agricultural technology, so that food could be brought in. Your readers might only know that cars are as fast as airplanes and strawberries are as big as 10 year olds.

    To summarize: Knowing what you want to write about can give direction to what you want to do with your world's technology. There is no correct amount of technology to include in your story. You’re creating a world, so do it however you want and develop it based on your own interests. And, most importantly, have fun with it!
     
  3. wellthatsnice
    Offline

    wellthatsnice Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2015
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    101
    This is a complex question. One of my favorite things to do when im looking at future predictions is to looks at the predictions made 100 years ago around the technology of today. What you see a lot of is that most people expected flying vehicles of some kind, nobody really anticipated cell phones that were replacing computers.

    Back to the Future II has some great examples of this. They predicted video conferencing, flat screen TV's, Card readers, 3D tech, but Marty gets fired via fax rather than email, and uses a phone booth instead of a cell phone. Also flying cars and hoverboards.

    The key here is to read about, study, and listen to talks by industry leaders on what they think the next phase in their world is.

    3D printing - Concepts like buying plans/licenses off the internet in order to 3D print them at home (you would by a licence that would let you print a one new set of headphones)

    Nano-tech - medical, clothing, communication will all be effected by this.

    Space Elevator - No longer required rockets in order to escape earth atmosphere.

    These are all talked about things that could be part of our future in the next 50 years, much less the next 150. That said, some will fizzle out, while others will advance much faster than we could ever imagine.

    I feel like in Sci-Fi we mostly focus on AI today because it is a concept that scares us...which is a big reason why i think that it doesn't advance as quickly as people think. If people are terrified of a thing, then there isn't a huge market for it. People don't want a computer intelligence that is smarter than they are and controls their life. If it cant make money, companies wont build it.

    Anyway, the events that happen in you world in 2100 are what will shape the technology of 2150. So in order to come up with realistic tech for your world what you really need is to decide what has happened in the years leading up to your present day. If everything has been peaceful, then military tech may not be much more advanced, but communication tech may be eons ahead. These are all things that you need to decide for yourself.
     
    Andreas likes this.
  4. Andreas
    Offline

    Andreas New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thanks for your help, guys! I share most of your points as well. A bit scary yet interesting when it comes to writing about and predicting a future community, huh?
     
  5. pyroglyphian
    Offline

    pyroglyphian Member

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2015
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    42
    You might like to peruse Future Timeline (www.futuretimeline.net/).

    It's kind of a chronology of future events drawn from current scientific knowledge. Makes for interesting reading.

    Guess it's down to your imagination and craft, ultimately. Many things could happen between now and 2150.
     
  6. wellthatsnice
    Offline

    wellthatsnice Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2015
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    101
    I would look at that to get the juices flowing based around the very general headlines. The people who create this seem to be well versed in Science and Tech, but vastly under qualified to talk about econ and politics. Basically, whatever they wrote about politics and econ...do the exact opposite in your writing.
     
  7. Aled James Taylor
    Offline

    Aled James Taylor Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2013
    Messages:
    784
    Likes Received:
    462
    Location:
    UK
    You can use a story about the future to say something about the present. You can write about an issue that is affecting people today and say, 'look, if we allow this to continue, this might happen.'

    If you're concerned about natural resources, you could write a story about what happens when they start to run out. What happens when oil costs $1000 a barrel, then $2000?

    You could be more flippant and include details like everybody having really good skin, and older men having full heads of hair, because someone invented skincare and haircare products that actually work!!!!!!

    One trend that's increasing is 'Health & Safety'. I can imagine a future where shop assistants wear high visibility clothing so they'll be easily identified should there be an emergency. You may have to sit through a safety presentation, like you have on an aeroplane, when you visiting a restaurant. So if you choke on your food, you'll know to press the call button, so a member of staff can rush over to assist you (after putting on his high visibility jacket).

    What happens when company executives receive millions as income and everyone else is on minimum wage, (which the executives want to cut). Newspapers print nothing but political propaganda to brainwash the people into supporting the existing system, and governments are so influenced by large corporations they effectively work for them (so it looks like the minimum wage reduction is a dead-cert). Oh, you said the future didn't you.
     
  8. Brandogg12
    Offline

    Brandogg12 Active Member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2011
    Messages:
    81
    Likes Received:
    0
    Here's another perspective- Perhaps all of the technological growth led to a demise of civilization because ambition paired with high-powered lasers leaving nothing but rubble and remnants of a flourishing metropolis. Or everyone just hovers around on levitating chairs eating 3-D printed steak and is morbidly obese like on WALL-E.
     
  9. tonguetied
    Offline

    tonguetied Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    May 23, 2014
    Messages:
    547
    Likes Received:
    219
    Location:
    Near Atlanta
    What goes up must come down. I think civilization may face another dark ages, we call it a dystopian society now. Back when I was a kid there was a book called "Future Shock", I'm talking about fifty years ago, and its message still seems to apply. In general people have very little understanding of the technology we rely on and our society is dependent on that technology to keep us going. This leads to a very tenuous situation, we may not reach a collapsing point before your time setting but it appears to me that we are rapidly approaching a time frame where one incident could trigger a collapse.

    Good luck with your story line, it can take any direction you want but very little of what we predict now will be accurate about one hundred years from now, at least not on a large scale, onesies and twosies, yes, but not in general, so just have fun with it.
     
    jannert likes this.
  10. pyroglyphian
    Offline

    pyroglyphian Member

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2015
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    42
    Indeed, which is what the OP asked for, however you make a fair point. I wouldn't adhere rigidly to anyone's predictions; imagining my own scenarios is half the fun.
     
  11. Commandante Lemming
    Offline

    Commandante Lemming Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    May 8, 2014
    Messages:
    1,241
    Likes Received:
    1,000
    Really it's a matter of what type of story you're trying to tell.

    I'm writing a piece set in the 2030s, and it's very different from a lot of imagined near-futures in that I've posited a relative lack technological change, economic malaise, and generally allowed the world to stagnate rather than advance. It's about as far away from cyberpunk as you can get, no body implants, no speculation about singularity - nothing.

    So, am I right or are the cyberpunks?

    Actually we both are - our futures just exist to do different things. Cyberpunk is very much about the dystopian effects of technology, the control of information by the state, the increasing melding of human and machine, etc. If you want to talk about those things, you need a world with a dystopian government, technology invading the human body, etc. Hence, cyberpunk.

    I'm not talking about those things. I'm talking about the social proclivities of the Millenial Generation, the long-term impacts of ignoring critical political issues, and the dangers of society's increasing self-absorbtion, and the atrophy of traditional civil society. Hence, my tech has stagnated, the government isn't so much dystopian as it is fiddling while Rome burns, the culture has become obsessed with retro 1950s themes, and all of the characters would look very familiar to a contemporary reader (at least I hope so, seeing as my goal is to convince readers that these characters are essentially grown up versions of their own young children). I built the world to my needs, and now I have something twisted that I'm only-half-jokingly referring to as "SelfiePunk".*

    So, essentially, the question is what type of point you want your story to make. What does it need? The basic function of sci-fi is to play out certain technological proclivities to their most extreme logical conclusion, thereby exposing the problems posed by society's reactions to said technology (Dystopias play out the problems if things go wrong, Utopias unearth new problems posed by the elimination of hardships when things go right.) Decide what you're writing about, then play out your future so that your cocktail of future events generates a reality where your problem is best exposed.

    *My working definition of 'SelfiePunk' being: "A future based on the extrapolation of the social and technology trends of the Millenial Generation between 2010 and 2015."
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2015
    jannert likes this.
  12. Andreas
    Offline

    Andreas New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    1
    Hey there, everyone!

    I checked the future-timeline website, and the stuff in there seemed quite interesting, viewing it from a technical/scientific point of view. As many of you have said, it can take any direction: a dystopian, high-tec community with lots of surveillance like the Nineteen Eighty-Four novel. Or I could take the opposite approach and go for a high-tech, utopian society. There are numerous possibilities, and I value your inputs.
     
  13. Arya Stark
    Offline

    Arya Stark Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2015
    Messages:
    41
    Likes Received:
    10
    It's your world! You can have amazing exo suits for everybody, or you can have technology only available to the highest class of society!


    That could lead to houses being formed similarly to medieval eras, which could breed a gazillion different stories!
     
  14. bumble bee
    Offline

    bumble bee Member

    Joined:
    May 30, 2015
    Messages:
    73
    Likes Received:
    36
    I am intrigued by the way round you have asked this question.
    I would have expected it to be more along the lines of:

    "I want to write a story in which it is important to the plot that xyz technology exists, how far in the future do you think would be realistic?"

    If you don't have any specific technology/societal changes in mind, why choose the year 2150, why not just make it 2015? or not give it a specific year at all

    I don't mean to be rude- I'm just genuinely curious!
     
  15. Andreas
    Offline

    Andreas New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    1
    Bumble bee,

    I absolutely respect your curiosity, and for asking, you deserve an answer! :)

    I do indeed have specific technology/societal changes in mind. Take: kids with a chip in their pillow that loads their brains up with informations each night as they sleep, as an example. I was interested in this specific time period due to one, simple technological step. Some people are cryogenically frozen, just waiting for human technology to reach that step when they can be reanimated. So while I figured that 2150 would be a good period for that sort of thing, I wanted other peoples opinions as to how the rest of technology would progess.
     
  16. captain kate
    Offline

    captain kate Active Member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2008
    Messages:
    876
    Likes Received:
    28
    Location:
    Cruising through space.
    As someone who writes Science Fiction, you can as much or as little high tech as you wish. I tend to go for just enough to be Sci Fi. Things like FTL and beam weapons on my warships. Everything else is projectile weapons. So, you can decide what you want...it won't make any difference as to whether it's Sci Fi or not.
     

Share This Page