Without a doubt. Science fiction has been the inspiration for a lot of the tech we take for granted today. Take the first-person-shooter games many play today. Arguably, they date back to id software's Wolfenstein 3D. Modern ways of thinking about 3D came from id software's John Carmack. In the book "Masters of Doom," Carmack admitted that Star Trek Next Generation's "holodeck" was his ultimate goal. Though, the gaming tech never achieved that goal, Carmack still believes it will happen.
Carmack and id software are backing the Oculus Rift gaming headset with a special version of Doom 3 BFG Edition. The goggles feature the widest field of view than any other headset in history. A step closer to Carmack's goal of real virtual reality.
Wow, this is quite a wild concept...like a robotic Borg from Star Trek but with their very own mothership. Amazing if this project actually goes all the way and these hedgehogs are out there exploring the universe.
freisl, I like that idea--sort of like space Roombas. We certainly need a lot of them! Here's an article we did on a robot system DARPA is working on to recycle space junk: http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1386&doc_id=249134
Lets imagine that on earth we were deluged with coffee tables deploying hundreds of little spiked things from the sky raining down on us. It would certainly be the end of civilization as we know it. CNN would be interviewing some govt. bureaucrat or better still the presidents "spokes person" that would be trying to tell us it was no big deal while the Army, Navy, Airforce, etc from every country on earth would be on high alert accusing every other country on earth of doing it. Countries would instantly start bombing each other (imagine North and South Korea). Israel would accuse Iran of doing it while Iran would of course be denying it.
May be that is what the Mayans predicted but just had their math off a little.
Only something like this could be developed by our stupid govt.