Wednesday, August 11, 2010

"The Future is Wild:" Giving Your Imagination a Workout

The Future is Wild

"How will the world look in 5 million, 100 million and 200 million years? How will the continents look? Will it be hot or cold? And what kinds of fantastic creatures will be walking the Earth?

"These are the questions The Future Is Wild Set out to answer, by involving the world’s leading scientists in creating a fully animated vision of what we might find, if only we could travel in time.

"By blending good science with real imagination our team has created three very different worlds along the timeline; exotic places you can explore through animatronics, films, theme parks, books and even Manga comic books...."


(from The Future is Wild, used w/o permission)

Make no mistake: The folks who are developing The Future is Wild's website would love it if you bought their products. This is a commercial website.

And a pretty good one.

That picture is of a 'Great Blue Windrunner,' in my opinion one of the more plausible critters imagined by the project's team. It's a four-winged bird - the aft pair of wings are its legs, equipped with flight feathers. They're probably not all that efficient as wings, since they're also used as legs when the bird lands: but I can see how a creature like that could exist.

CAUTION! IMAGINATION IN USE!

I saw parts of the original The Future is Wild series, and was impressed with the CGI art and technology - and the degree to which the scientists made occasionally-bizarre critters seem plausible.

They're quite clear on this point: The Future is Wild is not, strictly speaking, prediction. They don't say that this is what will happen. Just that, in principle, it could.

I enjoyed browsing through this website - particularly the part where the world of 5,000,000 years, 100,000,000, 200,000,000 years in the future is sketched out.

No people, by the way. Apart from the drearily familiar 'and we're all gonna die' attitude that's been fashionable for a few decades now, adding what people would be doing to the mix would have taken the original show in a quite different direction.

Like I said, I enjoyed looking through the website: but I also enjoy making my imagination to push-ups at frequent intervals.

I'd recommend The Future is Wild for folks who don't mind using their imaginations - and are willing to think about things that are possible, but which don't actually exist.

2 comments:

Brigid said...

"5,000,000, 100,000,000" It looks like there isn't a space in the original post. Gets a tad confusing.

Brian, aka Aluwir, aka Norski said...

Brigid,

'Well, I knew what I meant!'

I write & edit these posts in a non-proportional (typewriter-style) font - they're displayed in a proportional font.

Which, in this case, created a serious legibility problem.

I've revised that sentence: thanks!

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