The ‘Star Trek’ Holodeck: From Science Fiction to a New Reality
“The Holodeck first appeared in The Practical Joker, a 1974 episode of the Star Trek animated series. It was depicted as a recreation room containing a simulated, alternative version of reality. It featured heavily in The Next Generation series and in the 1996 film First Contact.
Anyone entering the Holodeck could interact with “solid” props and characters in any scenario based on whatever parameters they programmed.
These programs are not unlike the narrative-driven, cinematic videogames we have today, such as Grand Theft Auto, Red Dead Redemption or The Witcher.
The Holodeck was a narrative device that allowed Star Trek’s writers to experiment with philosophical questions in settings not available in a typical sci-fi context.
It inspired several generations of computer scientists who spearheaded research in artificial intelligence, computer graphics and human-computer interaction.
The convergence of these research areas has given rise to other forms of reality on the path to the construction of a real Holodeck…”
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