A Very American Coup By Michael – Louis Ingram, Editor-in-Chief...
Reality, Robots, and the Bionic Man
NORTH CAROLINA-(BASN)-At this moment in time, we all must think outside of the artificial realities created by so-called “REALITY” shows, HIP-HOP videos, and video games like GRAND THEFT AUTO.
And, even the nightly news.
Why? Because, we all have become a little addicted to the fake culture of red carpet, video award shows, Botox beauties, breast implants, star-studded events and video game systems like the XBOX1 and Playstation4, which people stood in the long, cold lines in order to purchase during “Black Friday.”
And, unfortunately, we, shamefully, now, measure our existence with the fakeness of the Kardashians, while comparing our trusted thoughts with those that are manufactured by those, who are trapped in the idiot boxes, who spend a large portion of their lives reading Teleprompters and calling it real news like the character Ron Burgundy, played by comedian Will Ferrell.
This is the illusion of reality.
Why? Because, there is dis-information, mis-information and information.
And, oddly, despite all of the information available at our fingertips, due to Google and the Internet, the people seem to be getting dumber.
I know it is a hard pill to swallow, especially with all of these young people as well as older people doped out of their minds on prescription drugs, pain killers and party pills like ecstasy.
But, sadly, they are all simply lab rats, practicing a form of escapism from the pain of the world, which has them running around on the treadmill of this thing called life, in a constant circular motion, going no-where fast.
SCIENCE FICTION IS SCIENCE FACT
Why? Because, in the near-future, science-fiction will become scientific fact, as scientists mirage animals with humans through the assistance of human growth hormones, genetic engineering, and human cloning.
Advancements in steroids, in fact, will turn future athletes into the Gods with superpowers like the Superheroes that we dreamed about and read about in the comic books section.
Yes, some of these future ballers may stand 10-foot-tall like the fictional characters in the movie Avatar, a 2009 American epic science fiction action film directed, and written by James Cameron, while running the 40 yard dash in 3.5 seconds, and bench pressing 325 pounds 80 times.
This superhero theme and connection can already be seen in the futuristic-uniforms being worn by the new college recruits in the NCAA, especially the Oregon Ducks, who have a $68 million state of the arts Football Performance Center, which is a six-story tall technologically and architecturally innovative structure that houses the Ducks’ weight training room with Brazilian hardwood floor, locker room, players’ lounge, coach offices and meeting rooms, as well as a full-service dining hall and barber shop.
Plus, let’s not forget, they have already revealed their 3-D hologram technology, which beamed Tupac back to life.
Therefore, could you imagine fans paying to see a holographic fight between Muhammad Ali and Mike Tyson in a virtual coliseum?
Games, for that matter, maybe performed by androids like the movie Surrogates, a 2009 American science fiction action film, based on the 2005–2006 comic book series of the same name starring Bruce Willis, which is about the widespread use of remotely-controlled androids called “surrogates” that allowed everyone to live in idealized forms from the safety of their homes.
You might think I am crazy, but look at how detailed the graphics have become on the latest MADDEN games. Plus, with the creation of the Oculus Rift, a virtual-reality headset that enables users to experience games as immersive three-dimensional environments, we all maybe a part of the Matrix “real” soon.
A LITTLE IMAGINATION CAN TRANSFORM THE GAME
Yes, with a little imagination, the games we love and cheer for, could be “transformed” forever for the better or the worse?
But, in the future, fantasy could become reality.
Especially, with the advancements in Nano-technology, which could potentially give athletes the ability to recover quicker and heal themselves from serious injuries just like the X-MEN’S Wolverine.
Which means, athletes would be able to play longer, shatter older records, and become true legends of the game?
With that said, Dallas Maverick’s basketball owner Mark Cuban recently told USA Today that he believes the NBA should explore the benefits of making human growth hormone (HGH) an approved substance under league supervision, even as the league pushes for HGH testing in negotiations with the players’ union.
As Cuban campaigns for the use of HGH, the evolution of man and animal continue to intertwine. Plus, the potential of man and machine becoming a reality is getting closer every day.
We, in fact, have already slowly seen this with South African Olympian sprinter Oscar Pistorius, who is known as “Blade Runner” as well as with laser eye surgery being performed on athletes like Golfer Tiger Woods as well as the controversial Regenokine platelet-rich plasma therapy being peformed on the right knee of Kobe Bryant, in which blood is spun until it contains a high concentration of healing platelets, to concentrated bone marrow injections, dense with stem cells.
With that little bit of evidence, the movie REEL STEEL, a 2011 American science fiction sports drama film starring Hugh Jackman and Dakota Goyo, co-produced and directed by Shawn Levy ,may have given us a glimpse into the future of boxing with those ROCK’EM SOCK’EM ROBOTS, especially with the sport of boxing being so violence.
Therefore, imagine, if baseball players were giving super vision through laser eye surgery, which allow them to slow-down the ball in order to improve their eye-hand coordination?
Or, imagine a MLB pitcher with a mechanical arm, who has the incredible ability to throw a baseball 200 miles per hour.
Or, even a NFL kicker, for that matter, with a robot leg, who has the ability to kick an 80-yard field goal.
I know it sounds crazy now.
But, so did the Internet and Face book, a few years ago.
The Bionic Man
With these scientific advancements, many ponder how they could change and shape the athletes of tomorrow, who may play with artificial lungs, organs, and high-tech prosthetic limbs that could allow them to run faster, throw harder, jump higher as well as play longer without getting tired.
As far fetch as this may seem, engineers have already created a “robot” called the Bionic Man, using prosthetic limbs and artificial organs worth approximately $1 million -to showcase how much of the human body can now be rebuilt with metal, plastic and circuitry.
Yes, as I stated earlier, scientific fiction is slowly becoming scientific fact, as the FOX NFL Sunday’s official mascot Robot, racially named (Cleatus), which was named by a viewer during a contest in the winter of 2007, could truly be what the athletes of the future look like?
Seriously, our love affair with machines, like the movie I-ROBOT, a 2004 American dystopian science fiction action film directed by Alex Proyas and starring Will Smith, could have us slowly debating who is really human as technology continues to blur the lines between man and machine.
Consider the latest technology in sports apparel department, where Senoria’s $89 sports bra (for women) or Ishirt (for men) monitors calories burned, heart rate, and respiration, which is beamed to smart phones and the Reebok Check light, a $150 skullcap, aims to prevent concussions by monitoring athletes’ head injuries in activities including football, boxing and skiing.
So, imagine, cars which can now parallel park, having the ability to drive without anyone behind the wheel like the driverless toy car called the Anki Drive, a $200 racing game in which toy cars can drive themselves. The cars carry sensors that feed data to an iPhone or iPad, which players can use to control speed and position for their cars.
Really?How could this tiny bit of technology effect the way we watch NASCAR? Would it make the sport of racing less dangerous, more exciting and faster?
Sports, Military, and Society
Also, with the usage of remote controlled drones by our US military, along with Amazon.com considering using them to deliver packages in the future, will the government implement ROBOCOPS, like the one in the 1987 science fiction action film directed by Paul Verhoeven and written by Edward Neumeier and Michael Miner, to patrol the inner cities of Detroit, Chicago, and Los Angeles to eliminate gangs next?
Seriously, all of this is possible….
Therefore, the Terminator, a cyborg assassin, played by Arnold Schwarzenegger, who was sent back in time from the year 2029 to 1984 to kill Sarah Connor, played by Linda Hamilton in the 1984 movie called the Terminator, maybe “coming back.”for real.
Why? Because, the US Military’s research wing DARPA is working on a Terminator-like walking humanoid robot named Atlas, which is a giant controlled by a human operator, who guides the sensors, hydraulics, and limbs through a range of natural motions.
Yes, the facts are stranger than fiction.
With all of these technological and scientific advances will the world of sports have to re-evaluate the way Lance Armstrong, Alex Rodriguez, Sammy Sosa, Jose Cansco, Mark McGuire, Barry Bonds, Marion Jones, Ben Johnson, and a host of other athletes, who took some form of performance enhancement drug to improve their games in the future?
Will the accomplishment and standards set by great players like Michael Jordan, Lebron James, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Walter Payton, Payton Manning and others be viewed as meaningless by a future generation, who will have robots providing video game-type numbers and possible records?
Will the invention of robots remove the stigma of race in America, as the world is forced to embrace a society of humanoids and robots that are here slowly to replace them?
These difficult questions will be answered as time and technology meet face to face in the future.
Eric D.Graham, a graduate of Winston-Salem State University, where he received a B.A. in Mass Communication with a concentration in Radio and Television, with a minor in History, with an emphasis in African-American Studies, is currently the Editor and Chief of Black Athlete Sports Network, where his articles appear daily along with his controversial cartoon character Bobbee Bee “The Hater.” Graham can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org