Waiting for the Grand Unification






When we were in Manhattan recently, Partner and I saw a demo of Google TV. It’s very neat: it makes your TV screen do everything your computer screen does, in addition to showing broadcast TV. There are still two small problems, however:



It’s a step in the right direction, though. Ultimately, everything – your phone, your netbook / laptop, your desktop computer, your MP3 player, your TV – will access the same content and have the same capabilities. You’ll be able to make a phone call with your TV, and access the Net with your phone, and watch TV programming on your laptop. (Actually you can do most of this now; they’re still filling in some of the gaps). The main difference will be the size of the screen and keyboard in each case.


Now that’s a grand unification.


The borders are already blurring. “The Social Network” was a movie about a website, written by a TV mogul. “Prince of Persia” – urk – was a movie based on a video game and marketed virally. (I mention it because Partner and I saw it on Cape Cod in June, during a moment of weakness. It was stinkeroo. But I digress.)


I would love to live to see the Grand Unification happen, but I also have my doubts. Anything heavily tech-oriented is also fragile. One good catastrophe – war, natural disaster – could knock out so much: delivery, content, availability.  Even a really good solar flare can bring the Net to its knees.

Time will tell.  The world is supposed to end in 2012.  There’s that damn asteroid out there with our name on it that’s due in 2029.  Barring any of that, there are the actuarial odds.  I’m fifty-three now; depending on which side of my genome wins out, my father’s or my mother’s, I have anywhere from ten to forty years left on earth.

Unless I get hit on the head by a falling safe tomorrow.

(But listen.  Seriously.  If you haven’t seen the movie version of “Prince of Persia,” save yourself the grief. No one needs that.)

About Loren Williams
Gay, partnered, living in Providence, working at a local university. Loves: books, movies, TV. Comments and recriminations can be sent to futureworld@cox.net.

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