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Star Wars and the Technology it Created

As the new Star Wars movie is about to be released, I hear all sorts of talk. People like me seem so excited about it. People less techie than I have mixed emotions. Most people don’t understand why the movie is so important and how it has impacted the world.

I was able to watch the first Star Wars with my dad. I was 8 years old and loved technology, even back then. My father was a tool and die maker. He had an eye for detail and was intensely meticulous about being able to take things apart and put them back together. As a boy, and much like my father, I loved to take things apart and see how they work. He was the driving force behind my learning of how to take things apart and put them back together. He helped me learn how to troubleshoot things. He helped me look at issues both from a macro and micro approach.

I still remember the excitement my dad had about the movie. We loved watching Star Trek on TV. He claimed that this would be even better than that. We watched the movie together. It was great…computers everywhere, robots, droids, and space flight. All this happened long ago in a galaxy far, far away. On the way home my dad asked me what I thought about the movie. I talked with him about the plot and the characters. I told him it would be so cool to have the technology that they did. If it was only possible…. He told me it was.

The next day we didn’t build a lightsaber or a starship but instead we tore apart a radio and a tape recorder to string wire across the house. We had many discussions about technology and how it only takes people with vision to make these things a reality.

Since that time I have seen great innovations in technology that have done amazing and horrible things for our species. Many of these innovations and inventions would never have come to pass without science fiction movies and shows, like Star Wars. It’s incredible to think that today I work for a company that provides all of this technology to businesses that helps them perform their daily tasks. Technology that for the most part didn’t exist in the form it does now 10 years ago.

Chances are your reading this on a science fiction like device that wasn’t even thought of 20 years ago. So when you go to the theater or eventually stream the movie on Netflix, think about the possibilities and imagine what is to come in the future.

Merry Christmas…May the Force be with you.

– Pete Avery, Chief Technology Officer

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