Star Trek is one of the most popular and respected sci-fi franchises in the world with its countless TV series, movies, books, and comics as well as a massive number of toys. So it’s understandable why so many are obsessed with the Star Trek universe, so much so, that it has affected the real world in many ways!
Inspiring young scientists
From original fans to people just discovering Star Trek today, this franchise has inspired so many children to become scientists and work in scientific fields. Many scientists today credit their love of space and learning to the franchise of series and movies that taught them how to think big, and drove them to discover the universe that they live in. Arguably, it inspired several generations to be educated and research everything they can about their reality.
Advances in medical technology
From time to time, Star Trek shows non-invasive medical technology that is used for scanning and healing its characters, but now both NASA and GRoK Technologies have reported new advances in technology that aim to regenerate bone and muscle tissue without having to do as much damage to patients. This could change the way that doctors treat people and it was all inspired by Star Trek.
As Star Trek is based around and often set on spaceships, it makes sense to see how we can take inspiration from this aspect of the science fiction show. The ion propulsion system that NASA is working on is an engine that expels ions, using electric fields, out of the spacecraft which gives the ship the thrust it would need to make long journeys across the stars. This sounds like something directly inspired by Star Trek’s forward-thinking style.
Mobile communication devices
One of the first examples of a small machine used for instant wireless interaction appeared in Star Trek. We now have devices that can do just that, and not only can we just talk on them like in the show but they are also able to connect to the internet and are used by touching the screen – no buttons needed. Many of the first designers of cell phones looked to Star Trek as a goal for what to create and we have now gone even more advanced than that.
Scientific and technological advancements are not the only thing that viewers took from the show, they also dealt with social activism and inequality among different races and species of humans and aliens alike. More than a few episodes dealt with how society should treat others, emphasizing the importance of equality to create a functioning society. The show’s writers even dove into the rights that other abnormal sentient forms of life would possibly have, such as artificial intelligence, holograms, and androids.
Most of Star Trek’s story is more heavily based in fantasy with hints of real science, but even still, the writers have explored potential and real theoretical physics and principles in their show. From natural phenomena found in space, like wormholes, black holes, and unique planetary systems, to more abstract concepts like time travel and faster than light space travel. Star Trek has broadened the scope of its audience’s mind more than a few times.
This landmark franchise in sci-fi media will most probably still be remembered in years to come. It has influenced countless minds across the globe and even today it still impacts the real world in so many ways.