Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Internet: The Stuff of Fantasies

I remember the day I watched the first Harry Potter movie. Stuff of fantasies, I thought. With a wave of wand, and not just some fancy prestidigitation, mind you, you could do anything. From flying objects, to unlocking doors, from creating things out of thin air, to killing someone flat. Anything!
And watching my fantasies come true on the 70 mm screen, the desire to see these fantasies turn reality grew stronger. Perhaps, sometimes, desperate. Subsequently, whenever I had to get up in the middle of a movie, or a television show to get drinks or snacks, I always thought how it would be so much better if I could, without lifting my lazy ass off the couch, just yell "Accio Drink" and watch the refrigerator door open and the bottle of Pepsi, flying through the air, make its way towards me on its own, in my oh-so-grateful hands. Life could be blissful, right?
And I would always imagine Draco Malfoy scoffing at this stupid thought.
[Scene set against the backdrop of a temple]
Draco Malfoy: Mere paas wand hai, pure blood hai, magic hai. Tumhare paas kya hai? (I have the wand, the pure blood race and the magic. What do you have?)
I wouldn't have a reply. How could I? After all, it's just a fantasy. Is it, though? What if I said....
Me: Mere paas................. Internet hai. (I have Internet.) [Sky thunders with a roar]
Internet, ladies and gentlemen, is the magic we have. And it can do wonders way beyond what Dumbledore with his Elder wand could do. Way beyond Harry Potter could ever dream of doing. Don't believe me? Here's a tale played out from two parallel universes.
[In Harry Potter's Universe] Gryffindor is playing Slytherin late evening. You decide to catch the action at home. Leaving office in jiffy, you rush home, as your office files close automatically and rearrange themselves neatly in a stack on your table. "Alohamora", your door unlocks. You run to the television. Remote, where is the remote? You can't find the remote. "Accio Remote". And comes the remote flying in your grateful hands. You sit down and start watching. But something's missing. "Accio Beer". "Accio Popcorn". Life is bliss.
[In a parallel universe, our universe] 5:30 P.M, your clock shows. Your phone calendar notifies you about the Gryffindor Slytherin Quiditch match. As you leave office in a jiffy, your computer synced with the calendar, shuts down, closing all the files and making a sticky note of the task to be done the next day. Meanwhile, your phone rings.
You are out of Beer and your refrigerator has ordered 3 bottles for you. Please enter your password to complete the payment.
The smart refrigerator. Synced with your calendar, it knows about the game and has been programmed to know your need for "Chilled Beer" for the game. It checks if there is "Chilled Beer". If not, it places an order, of which you are notified when the payment password is required on your phone. You type in the password and done! You reach home, so does your order for "chilled beer". This, ladies and gentlemen, is Internet of Things.
""July 30, 1991", you speak at your door step. "Click", the door unlocks, your voice, once authenticated. Bio metric Door Locks at your service. You run for the TV. Remote, where is the remote? Who needs that! "Switch on the TV". The TV turns on automatically. "Quid Sports". Match is on. Smart TV, everyone. Life is bliss.
And that's just not it. Remember Dumbledore's pensieve? Yes, that bowl used to review memories. You pour in the memory vapor that you want to review and dive into the pensieve. Memories can then be viewed from a non-participant, third-person point of view. How do yo achieve that? Virtual Reality, my friends, along with the Google Glass, the in-fashion Wearable computing technology. The google glass, becoming an extension of you, lets you capture your experiences and store them onto the cloud for later reviews. Throw in your Virtual Reality Headset in the mix (something like Oculus?) and boy, do you get to relive your life in its entirety or what!
What else do can you think of? Marauder's Map? Google Map. Flu Powder? Teleportation. Owls at work? Drones at work. I can go on and on and on. This Internet, I told you, is something. It's our deathly hallows. And with it turning dreams and fantasies into reality, who's to say if the future generation would be saying "Why we don't need Harry Potter". I just hope they don't....