The tech 'Back to the Future' predicted for 2015 -- and what it missed
5:50

The tech 'Back to the Future' predicted for 2015 -- and what it missed

Culture
[SOUND] [MUSIC] [NOISE] [MUSIC] It's 2015, and folks, we're living in the future. But how does the glittering era we currently inhabit compare to our long held benchmark for technological progress? Back to the Future part two. The year 2015 as visited by Martie McFly got a lot of things right about today's tech, but in other ways our modern contraptions are way beyond anything we could have imagined back in the 80s. Here are the tech predictions that Back to the Future got right, and what it missed. Let's start with something the movie got right, the rise of the smart home. Marty's future house is absolutely packed with gadgets from flat screen TVs used for video calls. Hey.>> To fingerprint scanning door locks and voice controls just about everywhere. It's dangerous to enter without lights on. Lights on? Yeah.>> In our own 2015 meanwhile, one of the year's biggest trends has been giving our own home appliances a similar high tech makeover. A door lock sensed our presence, our thermostats can be set from anywhere, our lights change color, our homes can be viewed remotely while bazaar robots roam our carpets. [MUSIC] Hydrate level four please. Admittedly modern smart homes still can't cook a pizza in seconds, but there is one more similarity. Both the McFlys and today's tech-enabled households struggle to make voice control work. Hey, fruit. Thankfully there's- [UNKNOWN]? [UNKNOWN] Thank you. Yeah, Siri. Where's the fruit? Let me think about that. Here's what I found on the web, so yeah Siri, where's the fruit? There is one thing missing from Marty's smart home and it's the biggest problem with the film's vision of the future. Where's the Internet? The Internet has been, without a doubt, the greatest tech revolution of the last 25 years. Offering instant digital communication between devices and putting the sum of human knowledge at our fingertips, but in Marty's 2015, there's no sign that various gadgets are talking to each other. Indeed, there's not even a hint of email, with fax machines still the primary method of communication. Fax is one thing, but when it comes to a technology that's been steadily evolving over the last half of the century, fax in the future proves remarkably [UNKNOWN]. Modern television has come a long way since the medium started gaining traction in the middle of the last century, and Back to the Future saw several changes coming. For one thing, our TVs are flat panels and they're multi-functional, handling all many of apps, including video chat And while we don't tend to watch six channels at once, the modern phenomenon of second screen viewing does divide our attention with IMDB or reactions on Twitter never far from our field of vision. Speaking of those second screens, one thing nobody in the eighties could have anticipated was the role that mobile gadgets would play in our lives. The most fly kids of 2015 might have something resembling Google Glass, but it's not as personal or powerful as a modern smartphone. These goggles are hooked up to a shared telephone line for goodness sake. Dad, it's for you. And speaking of personal texts, where are all the social networks? If Marty Jr. had really wanted to avoid Griff and his gang, he could have just checked his Instagram. Let's talk about entertainment, an area in which Back to the Future made some very solid predictions, indeed. Take young Elijah Wood's disgust that 80s gaming involved using your hands, and then consider motion-based advances such as Microsoft's Kinect or the Oculus Rift. And while we're not watching Jaws 19 in holomax, The modern cinema landscape is dominated by sequels and franchises. Man the DeLorean is cool, and indeed Back to the Future did make some great predictions about innovation in the automotive industry, it just didn't quite guess where that innovation was happening. Our future lacks commercially available flying vehicles, but we've got self-driving cars looming on the horizon. And fully electric cars are rapidly gaining traction, which is pretty darn cool. So forget that while the DeLorean's time circuits are powered by the trash-consuming Mr. Fusion, the car itself still ran on gasoline. Chalk one up for the nonfictional timeline. So all things considered, how accurate was Back to the Future? Well, bearing in mind the makers of the movie were probably more concerned with making an entertaining film than playing Nostradamus, a lot of it is pretty spot on. I mean, apart from the hoverboard of course. Which let's be honest, is the only thing that any of us really wanted. [SOUND] Of course it's always possible that much of the tech that Back to the Future did predict exists precisely because it was in the film, offering humanity a glittering vision of what to aim for. In fact, it's almost as if the film itself was a message sent back from the future to our past self, creating multiple technological timelines [MUSIC] This is heavy. [MUSIC] [BLANK_AUDIO] What do you fancy doing now? Attend a rhythmic ceremonial ritual? [BLANK_AUDIO] [NOISE] [SOUND]

Up Next

Inside NASA's Artemis Rocket Factory
artemis1

Up Next

Inside NASA's Artemis Rocket Factory

Deepfake Expert Reacts to Viral Deepfakes
deepfake-3

Deepfake Expert Reacts to Viral Deepfakes

Apple WWDC 2022 Preview
wwdc-preview-00-01-51-17-still006

Apple WWDC 2022 Preview

F50 Hydrofoils: Racing The World's Most Advanced Sailboats
fd1-2772

F50 Hydrofoils: Racing The World's Most Advanced Sailboats

Why I'm More Excited for a New Apple Watch SE Than the Series 8
yt-apple-watch-se-n-8-v4

Why I'm More Excited for a New Apple Watch SE Than the Series 8

Gene Simmons talks about 50 years of Kiss Mania
gettyimages-1360277643

Gene Simmons talks about 50 years of Kiss Mania

Why Apple Should Launch an iPhone Subscription Plan
heres-which-iphone-you-should-buy-in-2022-mp4-00-00-07-17-still002

Why Apple Should Launch an iPhone Subscription Plan

2022 iPhone SE Disappoints in Drop Test
yt-iphone-se-drop-test-v3

2022 iPhone SE Disappoints in Drop Test

Disney's Galactic Starcruiser: What It's Really Like Inside the Star Wars Hotel
Disney Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser Hotel

Disney's Galactic Starcruiser: What It's Really Like Inside the Star Wars Hotel

Tech Shows

The Apple Core
apple-core-w

The Apple Core

Alphabet City
alphabet-city-w

Alphabet City

CNET Top 5
cnet-top-5-w

CNET Top 5

The Daily Charge
dc-site-1color-logo.png

The Daily Charge

What the Future
what-the-future-w

What the Future

Tech Today
tech-today-w

Tech Today

Latest News All latest news

Inside NASA's Artemis Rocket Factory
artemis1

Inside NASA's Artemis Rocket Factory

Watch What Could Be the World's First Commute in a Personal Flying Vehicle
jetson-one-seq-00-06-21-07-still001

Watch What Could Be the World's First Commute in a Personal Flying Vehicle

Deepfake Expert Reacts to Viral Deepfakes
deepfake-3

Deepfake Expert Reacts to Viral Deepfakes

Fun Amazon Finds Under $50 (July 2022)
amazonjuly2022-master-00-11-19-15-still001

Fun Amazon Finds Under $50 (July 2022)

Auto Giant Magna Prepares to Make Every Part of a Car Light Up
magna-lighting-00-01-55-05-still131

Auto Giant Magna Prepares to Make Every Part of a Car Light Up

How to Find Cheap Flights
airlinetickets-master-00-05-36-21-still003

How to Find Cheap Flights

Most Popular All most popular

Watch What Could Be the World's First Commute in a Personal Flying Vehicle
jetson-one-seq-00-06-21-07-still001

Watch What Could Be the World's First Commute in a Personal Flying Vehicle

Fun Amazon Finds Under $50 (July 2022)
amazonjuly2022-master-00-11-19-15-still001

Fun Amazon Finds Under $50 (July 2022)

SpyraTwo hands-on: The ultimate water gun
spyratwo-2

SpyraTwo hands-on: The ultimate water gun

Deepfake Expert Reacts to Viral Deepfakes
deepfake-3

Deepfake Expert Reacts to Viral Deepfakes

How to Find Cheap Flights
airlinetickets-master-00-05-36-21-still003

How to Find Cheap Flights

The iPhone at 15: How Apple's Phone Became the Center of Your Life
yt-applestuff-ep02-v6

The iPhone at 15: How Apple's Phone Became the Center of Your Life

Latest Products All latest products

E Ink Tablets: Everything You Need to Know
eink-website

E Ink Tablets: Everything You Need to Know

Moto G 5G Review: A $400 Phone That May Have Everything You Need
clip0001-00-00-25-15-still001

Moto G 5G Review: A $400 Phone That May Have Everything You Need

Hands-On: We Got to Try the Sony Xperia 1 IV and Its Zoom Lens
xperiafinalpicsite

Hands-On: We Got to Try the Sony Xperia 1 IV and Its Zoom Lens

Lenovo Legion 7 Gaming Laptops Combine Great Power With Simple, Slim Designs
lenovolegion-00-00-45-13-still003

Lenovo Legion 7 Gaming Laptops Combine Great Power With Simple, Slim Designs

Exploring Meta Store: Facebook Parent Meta's First Physical Retail Space
metastore

Exploring Meta Store: Facebook Parent Meta's First Physical Retail Space

Lenovo's Torrent of Slim-Series Laptops Has Almost Too Many Options
lenovoslim-00-00-03-10-still001.png

Lenovo's Torrent of Slim-Series Laptops Has Almost Too Many Options

Latest How To All how to videos

How to Play Games from PlayStation Plus on PC
psstill

How to Play Games from PlayStation Plus on PC

How to Delete or Disable Your Instagram Account
phoneonorange

How to Delete or Disable Your Instagram Account

Fix Your iPhone Screen With Apple's Self-Service Repair Kit
dsc00641

Fix Your iPhone Screen With Apple's Self-Service Repair Kit

How to Buy a Budget Laptop in 2022
budgetlaptops-00-08-35-15-still001

How to Buy a Budget Laptop in 2022

Google Pay: How to Set Up and Use
googlepay-inhand

Google Pay: How to Set Up and Use

Clean Your AirPods and EarPods Without Damaging Them
yt-howto-clean-airpods-v3

Clean Your AirPods and EarPods Without Damaging Them