The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

Opinion & Letters to the Editor

November 21, 2012

Imagination is becoming the new reality

Wednesday, November 21, 2012 — In 2006, researchers at Duke University developed a working, albeit imperfect, invisibility cloaking device.

With  this cloaking material, one can render a person or object nearly invisible.

Since then, with the help of graduate student Nathan Landy, Duke has now produced a better functioning cloaking device, according to a news release from the university on Nov. 12.

It seems that our technology is beginning to match our fiction.

Technological innovations have grown in leaps and bounds since man began harnessing tools.

So far, we've been able to make some of our greatest dreams reality through utilizing our technology.

We can replace lost limbs with artificial prosthesis, go to the market to get food whenever we need and travel great distances in short amounts of time.

However, just a few short years ago, if someone told you that scientists would develop an invisibility cloak, you'd tell them they were out of their minds.

“That's not reality, that's fantasy,” they would say.

What many people don't realize is that fantasy has its basis in reality; one defines the other, lending substance and meaning to the way we conceive these notions.

One hundred years ago, no one could picture a thing called the internet.

Instead they could imagine a power out there called telepathy that would allow you to communicate with another person across distances without uttering a single syllable, utilizing the power of the mind through a pseudo-magical understanding of the world.

Over the years we've seen a transition from a society that imagined everything as having a supernatural origin to a society that expects science to explain all.

Science has become a new religion, so to speak.

The German philosopher Max Weber called this modern transition disenchantment.

Science is coming to accomplish what many thought only “magic” could do.

I find this all very exciting, though I must disagree with the idea that the world is becoming disenchanted. If anything, I think it is becoming more enchanted.

We are getting closer and closer to being able to make our imagination's deepest desire a reality.

To me, this is a type of magic in and of itself, or it could be described as magical, at the very least.

Arthur C. Clarke, a famous science fiction writer, once said, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”

Overall, I think this movement is in a positive direction.

Truly, we are only limited by what we can imagine. If anything, this sentiment should re-enchant our perception of the world. It is intriguing to know that we can seemingly accomplish anything with the power of our imaginations, a little bit of hard work and a lot of perseverance.

We've put a man in space, we can bring a person back from the brink of death, we can communicate across vast distances nigh instantaneously and now we can seemingly turn a person invisible.

What will we think of, nay, what will we accomplish next?

 

1
Text Only
Opinion & Letters to the Editor
  • Almost half of America's obese youth don't know they're obese

    WASHINGTON - The good news is that after decades of furious growth, obesity rates finally seem to be leveling off in the U.S.. The bad news is that America's youth still appear to be dangerously unaware of the problem.

    July 23, 2014

  • Darth Vader is polling higher than all potential 2016 presidential candidates

    On the other hand, with a net favorability of -8, Jar Jar is considerably more popular than the U.S. Congress, which currently enjoys a net favorability rating of -65.

    July 23, 2014

  • D.G. Martin Where did all these new voters in North Carolina come from?

    “Voters born elsewhere make up nearly half of N.C. electorate.”
    So begins the latest DataNet report from the UNC Program on Public Life, directed by former journalist Ferrel Guillory.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Patrick Gannon Some light for Dems in their time of darkness

    RALEIGH – Earlier this year, state Sen. Ben Clark, a Hoke County Democrat, became a hero for a day among his party and environmentalists when his amendment to require more well water testing near future fracking sites passed the Senate. It even gained the support of a number of GOP senators, against the wishes of the Republican bill sponsor.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • mama.jpg What we get wrong about millennials living at home

    If the media is to be believed, America is facing a major crisis. "Kids," some age 25, 26, or even 30 years old, are living out of their childhood bedrooms and basements at alarmingly high numbers. The hand-wringing overlooks one problem: It's all overblown.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Doug Creamer Maintaining hope

    Gardeners are facing challenges with the weather this year. It seemed like we were getting great conditions in April and May. The weather was warm and we were getting some good rains. Then sometime in June the rain stopped. It got so dry that I didn’t have to cut the grass. While I enjoyed the break, the garden was not happy at all. I was having to water quite a bit to keep the vegetable garden alive and growing.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jason O. Boyd I may be a bit behind the times, but at least I can find ‘America’

    I seem to be reading about and dealing with technology a lot lately.
    I  love technology and have always been fascinated by gadgets of all kinds and the wonderful things they can do. You never seem to go through an entire day without some form of invention enhancing your life.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Brent Laurenz Meeting out in open helps negotiations move ahead

    RALEIGH – State lawmakers reconvened in Raleigh on May 14 promising a brief legislative session this summer, but as July moves along they are still in town and tackling big issues.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Larry's Sketch 7.16.14.tif They don’t give a darn for Duke University

    John “Duke” Wayne’s heirs are suing Duke University over trademark rights.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Your chocolate addiction is only going to get more expensive

    WASHINGTON - For nearly two years, cocoa prices have been on the rise. Finally, that's affecting the price you pay for a bar of chocolate - and there's reason to believe it's only the beginning.

    July 18, 2014

House Ads
Seasonal Content