Fifty years ago when “Star Trek” premiered on NBC, Gene Roddenberry, along with a slew of writers, introduced a trippy intergalactic vision of the future into American homes. Now that five decades have passed, how far has society advanced technology to resemble the fantasy-world of the “the final frontier?”
Source: University of Sussex


Tractor Beams

While its origins are based in science fiction, tractor beam technology is alive and well. The University of Sussex  is using “high-amplitude soundwaves to generate an acoustic hologram.” NASA has also developed “optical-trapping” technology, which employs lasers to transport materials.

uncaptioned Holodeck 

With 3D movies and VR headsets becoming a ubiquitous part of recreation, it’s safe to say that we’ve advanced out of the realm of fiction in this case. The future of virtual reality will have a close relationship with the development of artificial intelligence. Advances in 50 years time will seem like magic.

Source: Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory



While the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory’s advancements in modular prosthetic limbs are far cry from “The Borg,” the fact that patients can now “feel” and control robotic limbs is pretty futuristic.

Ion Propulsion

Ok, it’s not Warp Drive; faster-than-light speeds still resides in the science fiction world. NASA has been developing ion propulsion technology, which would increase interstellar travel to 90,000 miles per hour. That means there’s still no quick trip to Proxima B anytime soon.