Minority Report hit cinema screens in 2002, depicting a future world in which psychic humans predict crimes which have yet to be committed. Tom Cruise headed the cast list of this dystopian movie set it in 2054, and at the time of its release, the film featured numerous ideas of how technology may have progressed by then. Astonishingly, some of those predictions have come true already.
Movie goers were astounded by the vision of targeted adverts that clamoured to gain Tom Cruise’s attention in the film. Whilst we don’t yet have video adverts specifically aimed at us personally, many websites now offer tailored advertising based on your recent search history.
Back in 2002, the idea of driverless cars seemed a futuristic dream, but in 2017, Google has made huge advances with its own driverless vehicles. According to the BBC, plans are well underway for a trial of driverless cars on UK roads in 2019.
Tom Cruise’s character in the film uses voice control around his home to switch devices on and off, and in 2017, this technology is already fast becoming mainstream. Amazon and Google both have voice-activated devices that can perform numerous functions within the home, with more companies joining them all the time. Companies such as Digital Interiors, for example, offer complete Home Automation systems, that can adjust your home’s temperature, arm the intruder detection systems and lock your doors at night, all with a simple command.
Gesture interaction with computers
One of the most remarkable features of the movie was watching characters swiping and gesturing to giant computer screens, rather than using a keyboard or mouse. Nowadays we are accustomed to interacting with our devices by swiping, tapping and pinching, and gesture-driven devices are rapidly gaining in popularity. The Kinect technology used in the new Xbox will feature Minority Report-style gestures, bringing us ever closer to the technology depicted in the film.
Optical and facial recognition
Tom Cruise’s character in Minority Report tries to outwit the futuristic optical recognition software by engaging in a black market optical transplant. Thanks to some major investment by the FBI, optical recognition technology is now becoming commonplace, with a host of identification schemes, including retina scans, palm prints and even facial recognition software, all gaining in popularity.