Tag Archives: holodeck

From Rebecca: I was reminded about holodecks yesterday

Greetings, Joe’s readers. Right now I am sitting in Joe’s place with kitty cat Keekee nuzzling my arm and shedding like crazy. I am feeling a lot better and able to spend a bit more time with her today.

I was looking at the view statistics for the blog yesterday and noticed that someone found one of last year’s top ten lists, about what Joe would do in a Star Trek holodeck. A holodeck is a device that is programmed to replicate people, places, and objects so they appear to be solid and can be interacted with while in a special room. After all this time I had forgotten about Joe doing this post. If you want to read it yourself, here is the link. I read it over myself last night, and was impressed all over again by the idea of it and by Joe’s choices of things to experience. I want to do many of those things too; take a cruise, visit Bear Spring Camps, ride on a train. With enough skill at programing, anything is possible. I would also want to visit the past, see places how they used to be, like State College a hundred years ago. What did people wear, sound like, what were their houses like, what businesses were running then? I would want to walk in and look around, touch things, taste the foods, talk to the people. All while keeping safe and healthy in a controlled environment. It wouldn’t be real of course, and might cost as much or more as doing an activity in real life (like taking a cruise) depending on the prices for the technology, but it would be fun.

There are a number of video game companies trying to develop a virtual reality system, and from what I’ve read they have come a long way in the last few years to making something that feels like you are in the video game and interacting with a setting. The technology is still a long way though from walking into a room and hearing the wind blow through the trees you can see and smell, which might never be possible, but they are working on it.

One detail that always bothered me though is how the people using the holodeck went for a distance without hitting the room walls? I don’t remember the Star Trek writers ever addressing that issue, which I understand, but they had episodes where characters rode horses, walked the streets of a town, and traveled for long periods of time. I can understand the view on the walls shifting, but did they shift the floor too? This is an issue that the virtual reality game developers are having to address, with different approaches and solutions. One company is using a platform like a treadmill where the player walks and moves through the world of the game without roaming all over the room. That might work, but as an overweight person, I imagine it would not be available for all people and all sizes. It is interesting to watch the progress in that field though.

So, I would love to explore in a holodeck, though I probably never will. I enjoyed reading Joe’s entry about it again, though, and thinking about all the possibilities that a holodeck could offer. To be instantly in a far land, another place, or in a far time, experience  it, and then instantly be back where I started a few hours later, would be amazing.

What do you think? Where would you go? What would you do?

Until next week when Joe will have two more blog entries for you, have a great week, take care, and happy reading.


Top ten list of Star Trek holodeck programs I would have if the technology existed

Greetings, readers. As a Star Trek fanatic and a holodeck episode lover, I started to think, just what programs I would create and save if I had use of a holodeck. In the Star Trek world, even though a person is in a small room, the concept is that holographic images are displayed and moved so that people are tricked into thinking they have unlimited space. Here’s my list in reverse order.

#10. A visit to any city I chose. [Maybe one day I would create Paris and sit to enjoy coffee in an outdoor cafe. The next day, perhaps Rome to visit the Colosseum. Or to Devils Tower in Wyoming.]

#9. Drive a car to anywhere. [Oh, what fun it would be to drive to Maine any time I wanted to.]

#8. My own baseball league with my own home team and personally designed stadium. [I could see the Pennsylvania Lumberjacks, perhaps.]

#7. A house with a virtual family. [This idea, I must admit, came to me after watching an episode of Star Trek: Voyager, “Real Life”, where the Doctor created the perfect family, but B’Elanna Torres thought that was too easy and changed the program. I would set it up so that I could control the weather and the type of home and furniture we had, but I would randomized how my family reacted to me day-to-day to be more realistic. I would not have the “perfect” family.]

#6. A train ride to anywhere. [I could ride an Amtrak in America, take a local in New Jersey, or hop aboard the Orient Express. Lots of intrigue and mystery there.]

#5. Take a virtual cruise. [I could set it up for any number of days I chose and for any destination. I could take a quick trip to the Bahamas, or a cruise around the world, stopping at all the wonderful ports of call. This one would have to be saved and gone back to. ]

#4. An airplane ride to anywhere. [I absolutely adore aircraft. I wish I could fly in them more often. If I only had an hour, I would take a prop pane ride from State College to Pittsburgh. If I had more time on my hands, maybe I would hop a jet and fly cross-country to California. I could sit in my virtual airplane seat, take notes, and type my stories.]

#3. To speak to any writer I chose and pick his or her brain. [I could share my limited amount of work with them and ask them to critique it. Hopefully they would be kind.]

#2. A day at the beach. [Imagine the warmth, the sand, the smell of salt in the sea breeze, and of course, the ocean. I could spend hours in this program.]

#1. Recreate a day at Bear Spring Camps anytime I chose. [I would have a few scenarios in this program with different kinds of weather, different times of the year, and, of course, the people I know from real-life Bear Spring, as well as computer generated fictional families. You would hardly ever get me out of that program.]

Honorable mention: Camping in a tent. [I’ve never gone camping in a tent before, but if there was one big enough that I wouldn’t feel claustrophobic in, it would appeal to me. To hear the crickets at night and have my campfire going would be soothing and peaceful. I love nature, especially crickets and the sound of birds.]

There’s my list. I hope you enjoy. Whether you are a Star Trek fan or not, please do chime in with your list, either here or in Facebook.

Until next week, have a great weekend, take care, and happy reading.

Whoo hoot! I passed my apartment inspection

Greetings, readers. With the help of a good friend, I was able to pass my apartment re-inspection this past Monday. It was a trying and bittersweet day. Was I happy that I had passed? Absolutely. But a lot of stuff from my life had to be thrown away. As I have mentioned before, I’m a junior hoarder and we found bags of garbage inside bags of garbage and old papers. Not fun.

To be truthful, 75% of it was old clothes that either needed to be washed or were thrown away because they dry rotted. Family mementos were carefully placed in closets or drawers, and although I never would have thought it possible, the place looked great when we were finished. I actually have a bedroom again, not a storage unit.

I was proud of myself that I had kept my apartment in the half-decent shape that it was in from the first inspection the previous week. But if I had failed this inspection, I don’t know what would have happened. I enjoy living here and do not wish to have to move. Now I can relax, sign my lease in July, and it will kick in on October 1st.

On another note, since the inspection, I found myself retreating from real life by watching videos on YouTube of crickets, ocean waves, forests sounds, rain, and other such peaceful things. I searched for meditation videos, mainly from Japan and China. As I’ve said before, you can find almost anything on YouTube. Somehow I can’t help but wonder if this sudden desire to not live in my real world has a connection to having to lose so many of my things while cleaning out my apartment. My answer would be yes. Oh, my therapist will have a field day tomorrow. My favorite Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes dealt with the holodecks, where people lose themselves in a creative fantasy land. I have the feeling that that was what I was doing when I would listen to these 8 to 10 hour videos.

Next, here in central Pennsylvania, we have gone from mid-spring to what feels like early July in two days. Today is sunny, hazy, and a luscious 85 degrees F. No coat, jacket, or even sweater is required. I didn’t look at the long-range forecast, but hopefully this wonderfully warm weather will last a while.

Lastly, I would like to thank Rebecca for the wonderful review and write-up of my Beatles show. Everyone seemed to enjoy it as much as I enjoyed performing it.

Until Friday, take care, have a great couple of days, and happy reading.

We’re wondering what the fascination is about Top ten list of modern convenience

Greetings, readers. Rebecca and I always get a chuckle every time we check our blog stats for each week and see Top ten list of modern conveniences has gotten more views. Don’t get me wrong, I’m extremely happy when any of my entries are viewed. But, when I wrote this piece in February of 2013, I must admit I didn’t think it was going to be as popular as it has turned out to be. As of yesterday, it has been viewed 991 times since I posted it. In comparison, a top ten list from the same month, Top ten list of my favorite TV cars, chimed in with a whopping 9 views to date (although that does not count anyone who read it off the home page without clicking on it when it was first posted).

Rebecca has a theory which I agree with. She thinks that a teacher somewhere around the world is using it in class to show students computer skills, explaining to students how to do searches and then open the links. It also might be that teachers in other countries are curious to know and show their students what this blogger from the United States thinks modern conveniences are.

It’s funny, for when I was 13 years old, a record player was a modern convenience. Now it is something called a collectible. Back in my mother’s era, automatic transmission on a car was a convenience or luxury. You see where I am going with this.

What will modern conveniences be 20 years from now? Will we have the Jetsons flying car? Or perhaps Star Trek transporter technology or a holodeck? Who knows? But I am certain that 30 years from now, people will pick up a Blu-ray disc and laugh because it can hold only one movie at a time.

Getting back to my opening paragraph, I’m thrilled that this entry continues to get reads, or at least clicks. If anyone knows why this piece is so popular, or has a theory about it, could you chime in below in the comments section or leave me a note in Facebook?

In closing, it’s a Penn State home football weekend, complete with a night game. I hope all the college students behave themselves, and don’t show up to the stadium too intoxicated. If you are a local reader, please be safe around town this weekend, and to all readers, have a wonderful weekend, take care, and happy reading.

Ambient nature sounds have come to my rescue

Greetings, readers. Thanks again to YouTube. Last night and this morning I discovered a plethora of wonderfully soothing videos to watch. My favorite is a four-hour video of a rain storm, complete with thunder. Some of my favorites came from two people whose YouTube handles are TexasHighDef and YogaDuke. As I was going through all the choices, I came upon someone with the YouTube handle 8 Hours Of, who makes videos, most eight hours in length, of such sounds as airport background noise and microwave sounds. I actually laughed out loud as I listened to about two minutes of his eight-hour video of cat purring. I turned that one off quickly because Keekee ran out into the living room thinking I had brought home a new cat. You should have seen the look on her face.

I typed in the search words ambient with Star Trek and came up with some doozies. I can now enjoy twelve full hours of engine noise from the U.S.S. Enterprise D, from Star Trek: Next Generation. Also available are crew quarters, Ten-Forward, and the bridge from both Next Generation and the original series. Very cool.

Back to nature. Before Rebecca arrived, I had on the rainstorm video. It did precisely what it said it would do; I began to get sleepy and had to turn it off. It and videos like it will be wonderful for nap time.

Over the weekend, I’m planning to sit down and really search this category, and compile myself a wide variety of soothing background noise videos. I almost feel like I have a Star Trek holodeck. Isn’t technology wonderful? I would be here for six hours if I tried to list everyone whose videos I’ve taken a look at. So one big generic thanks goes out to everybody.

As a person who struggles with stress and depression I have found myself a wonderful way to alleviate the daily ailments that can get to me. I’m not going to get rid of my therapist or my anti-depression medicine just yet. But so far YouTube is free; that’s the ticket.

Lastly, Rebecca told me that we might have snow tomorrow for gaming day. That may throw a monkey wrench in the plans. After this blog post gets put up, I plan to check the weather on my computer to see exactly what’s coming. If the word ice is mentioned, all plans will be shelved.

I bid you a good weekend, be safe, take care, and happy reading.