Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Calling Robert Heinlein

There are few people on this planet that have the ability to imagine and dream about possibilities better than Robert Heinlein. If you have ever read any of his stuff you are soon amazed to learn that he was predicting things back in the 1950's that were really impossible at the time.

Just like Jules Verne's predictions of submarine warfare, Heinlein, a former naval aviator, weighed in on the future of the military. In 1959 he wrote Starship Troopers, a wartime epic set in the somewhat distant future. The book details combat with alien races using powered armored suits. (Thirty years later, Japanese animation used the idea for the Robotech series.)

He also wrote about advanced prosthetics used by veterans that had lost limbs in action. Israeli inventor Amit Goffer has made science fiction science fact. His ReWalk device enables paraplegics to rise out of their wheel chairs and walk with the aid of crutches. Watch the video to see injured Israeli paratrooper Radi Kaiof walk around town and look people in the eye.

I don't know if Heinlein had a crystal ball, but for me, it was like reading DaVinci's notebook. If you have a spare moment, read the book, its fairly short. In addition to his ideas on technology, check out his vision of the government of the future. More to come on this.......

No comments: