The problem with texting

I’ve been texting since the dawn of cell phones and not until just recently have I felt the true reason why it can be an ineffective means of communications versus the good old fashioned telephone call. What turned out to be an okay event plan could have been an absolute disaster. Fortunately the good Lord was on my side that day but in my mind a whole lot of anxiety and a bit of panic about what could have happened stayed with me for several hours.

On Saturday I worked and the plan was for me to leave early to meet my wife and son at a soccer event in Downtown Vancouver, BC. Now we live in the deep suburbs south of the Fraser River and the plans would need to be coordinated in order for us to meet up successfully at our destination in Vancouver.

Find a new smartphone at Amazon

There must have been something like 40 messages flashing back and forth about possible options and ideas about how we’ll meet up, things to bring, things to consider. In the end I went with my original plan of taking the Skytrain and meeting up at BC Place. As I made my way to the Skytrain platform my phone began to ring. It was my wife and she said, “where are you? How come you’re not here yet?”smartphone case

Well immediately I felt a bit of panic, “what do you mean?” and she says “didn’t you see my latest text message which said meet me at home just after 2:00?” Then I said well didn’t you see my original text that said we’ll meet Downtown? From there I didn’t know if I should go left or right but we decided to meet up Downtown anyways.

As I proceeded towards the final destination I got another hit of panic as I realized that I didn’t have the tickets for the event. I phoned my wife over and over but she wasn’t answering as she was en route to the Skytrain herself. I thought perhaps I should just turn around and go back home to check as I suspected she didn’t have them. Fortunately for all of us she had the tickets.

Crisis averted. However this discourse left a bad taste in my mouth for the medium of texting. I believe that a phone call could have been a more comprehensive means of getting all the plans sorted out from the get go. And when we finally met up at the event I made her promise that we would never use texting for event planning again.

So what exactly is the problem with texting? Many of us do it continuously throughout our busy days. The nice thing about texting is that conversations can be short and to the point. In other words no bullshit and lets cut to the chase. The problem I’m seeing is the fragmentation of the thought process. We write a message, move onto another task then come back to the conversation. The conversational flow is lost.

Another issue is that you don’t know if the message was acknowledged and “mentally digested”. We have become a society of “skimmers and scanners” when we’re on the Internet. Hell I’ll bet most people reading this post aren’t actually reading it but skimming for content based on their present needs. And this behavior transfers over to our text conversations and makes for ineffective communications.

You may heard that teens and pre-teens are having issues even communicating face-to-face thanks to the ubiquity of text messaging applications. Well I’m not looking forward to having my kids plan out events in the future exclusively through text.  According to a post from Time, “as with real reading, the ability to comprehend subtlety and complexity comes only with time and a lot of experience. If you don’t adequately acquire those skills, moving out into the real world of real people can actually become quite scary. “I talk to kids and they describe their fear of conversation,” says Turkle. “An 18-year-old I interviewed recently said, ‘Someday, but certainly not now, I want to learn to have a conversation.’”

Apparently the problem with having physical conversations could be just as big as the problem with texting. I guess the real question is why is it so difficult to communicate effectively? Perhaps it is because our focus is torn in so many ways in this digital world. I would like to suggest that we take some time out and focus on recovering our conversational talents; after all speaking and thinking is what makes us fully human.

Can you take some time away from texting and make an effort to have deep conversations with others regardless of how difficult and awkward that may be? Why or why not?


The 10 most anticipated video games of 2013

The release of Grand Theft Auto 5 (GTA5) heralded the beginning of video game season. This is the time of year that developers like to release the video game blockbusters in the months leading up to Christmas. Video Games are becoming so big these days they are surpassing movies in revenue and GTA5 made $800 million on launch day stealing the record from Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 set in 2012. These numbers are huge and the demand for these blockbusters hits new records every year. So what other video games can we look forward to in 2013?

Buy Grand Theft Auto 5

Watch DogsUbisoft Watch Dogs

Ubisoft’s Watch Dogs due to release on November 19th is a “Person of Interest” type of game.  According to the developer, “you play as Aiden Pearce, a brilliant hacker and former thug, whose criminal past led to a violent family tragedy. While seeking justice for those events, you’ll monitor and hack those around you by manipulating the ctOS from the palm of your hand. You’ll access omnipresent security cameras, download personal information to locate a target, control traffic lights and public transportation to stop the enemy… and more.”

Buy Watch Dogs

Pokemon X and Y

Pokemon X and Y

Nintendo’s Pokemon X and Y is going to be a ton of fun! According to the press release courtesy of our friends at Games Press, “… Mega Evolution is a new, awe-inspiring transformation certain Pokémon can undergo during battle in the highly anticipated Pokémon X and Pokémon Y video games. Pokémon that Mega Evolve will tap into hidden reserves of strength and power that have never been realised in their regular Evolutions, giving players battling with a Mega-Evolved Pokémon a dominant advantage. Mega Evolutions will revolutionise Pokémon battles and usher in a new Pokémon transformation never-before-seen in the Pokémon world.”

Buy Pokemon X and Y

Beyond: Two Souls

Beyond: Two Souls
From the Sony Playstation site,

From the visionary mind of David Cage, director of the award-winning Heavy Rain™ game, comes the most powerfully emotional experience on the PlayStation®3 system. A singularly unique psychological action thriller delivered by A-list Hollywood performances, Beyond: Two Souls™ takes you on a thrilling journey across the globe as you play out the remarkable life of Jodie Holmes.

Born with a connection to a mysterious entity with incredible powers, Jodie was different. In an adventure spanning 15 years of her life, your actions will determine Jodie’s fate as she faces extraordinary challenges, danger, and heartwrenching loss on a journey to discover the truth of who she is. Beyond: Two Souls promises an emotionally-charged journey unlike any video game before.

Buy Beyond: Two Souls

Batman: Arkham Origins

Batman: Arkham Origins
Batman: Arkham Origins

Looking to be another great play, Batman: Arkham Origins is bound to be a top seller. The developer’s site explains the premise,

“Batman: Arkham Origins features an expanded Gotham City and introduces an original prequel storyline occurring several years before the events of Batman: Arkham Asylum and Batman: Arkham City. Taking place before the rise of Gotham City’s most dangerous villains and assassins, the game showcases a young, raw, unrefined Batman as he faces a defining moment in his early career as a crime fighter that sets his path to becoming the Dark Knight. As the story unfolds, witness identities being formed and key relationships being forged.”

Buy Batman: Arkham Origins

Battlefield 4

For those of you that like all out chaos and warfare Battlefield 4 might be the best place to land for the holiday season. This one looks intense and you may suffer from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after playing this one.

Here’s the blurb from the manufacturer, “Battlefield 4™ is the genre-defining action blockbuster made from moments that blur the line between game and glory — moments found only in Battlefield. With dynamic destructible environments, epic vehicular combat, and the chaos of all-out war, Battlefield 4 gives you the freedom to do more and be more for an unrivaled entertainment experience. Immerse yourself in the chaos of all-out war, in a series of unscripted controller-dropping moments, made possible by the power of Frostbite 3. Available on XBOX 360, PlayStation 3, PC, and the next-generation consoles.”

Buy Battlefield 4


FIFA Soccer 14

For you soccer (football) fans out there, FIFA Soccer 14 is always anticipated. Here’s the description from Amazon.

“Experience the emotion of scoring great goals in FIFA 14. The game plays the way great soccer matches are contested, with innovations to the award-winning gameplay that inspire fans to build play through midfield, dictating the tempo of a match. Feel the tension as chances are created, and experience the thrill of hitting the back of the net. A new feature called Pure Shot and a brand-new ball physics system will transform shooting, making every shot attempt feel real, and when players connect with the perfect strike, feel exhilarating. FIFA 14 delivers engaging online features and live services that connect fans to the heartbeat of the sport – and to each other – through EA SPORTS Football Club. FIFA 14 is soccer’s social network, where fans connect, compete and share with millions of others around the world.”

Buy FIFA 14

Killzone: Shadow Fall

Courtesy of Sony Entertainment, Killzone Shadow Fall takes place 30 years after the events of Killzone 3. Set in an era of interplanetary colonization, it focuses on the conflict between the Vektans and the Helghast, two rival colonist factions inhabiting a distant planet. For three decades, both factions have lived side by side, separated by an enormous security wall – but now their cold war is about to go hot.

It’s up to Lucas Kellan, a member of the military intelligence unit known as the Shadow Marshals, to try to protect the fragile peace that exists. A new warrior for a new era of war, Kellan ‘s missions will range from quiet infiltrations to all-out combat. Lucas will need to be methodical and ready to adapt, as any misstep could lead to mutually assured destruction!

Buy Killzone:Shadow Fall

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD

For the Nintendo Wii U fans out there, The Legend of Zelda has been around since they beginning of the Nintendo consoles. This franchise has built up to a cult like status and this next release is definitely one you won’t want to miss.

Buy The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD




Apple iOS 7 – the fireplace, blanket and hot chocolate have been stripped away

I’ve heard at least one tech columnist refer to the new Apple iOS 7 as looking like the user interface fell into a “bucket of clown makeup.” Now while I have to agree that the new interface is vastly different from its predecessor is this really an improvement? I understand that Apple wants to achieve minimalism in its products and this is definitely a step in that direction. Gone are lines and the look and feel of a pad of paper when using the “Notes” native app.

apple ios 7
apple ios 7

As a long time iPhone user it feels to me like something is missing, something familiar. You know that feeling that you get in the dead of winter when you cuddle up with a blanket in front of a fireplace with a mug of hot chocolate and a good show on the TV. To me it feels like the fireplace, blanket and hot chocolate have been stripped away.

When all I see is a white expanse in the Notes app I keep asking myself what’s missing and it’s the ruled paper look of the app. Personally it seems like the app is unfinished now. The other comparison I’m making is that Apple is copying the Windows Metro app look and feel. Take for example the Mail native app, many of the lines and dividers are gone in lieu of minimalism. Perhaps when I’m feeling sentimental I could always pull out my iPad 1 to look at the old and familiar interface though! But enough about the detractors as I would like to reflect on what has improved and the positives.

I like the fact that I can get spotlight from anywhere on any of the home screens by simply swiping down in the middle. This is a nice change and gets me quickly

apple ios 7
apple ios 7

to where I need to go. I also like the fact that I can swipe down on the lock screen to access my notifications and swipe up from the lock screen to see a bunch of other commonly used apps such as music, stopwatch, calculator and camera. The new wallpapers are also very nice and add to the sereneness of the new user interface. Another feature I really like is the new multitasking. This one was long overdue and Apple was falling behind here as vendors like Microsoft and Android were offering cleaner multitasking usability. AirDrop also sounds like a great feature as I often end up texting photos to friends with iPhones close by.

I’ve heard about a number of people suffering from bricked iPhones and so before taking on the task of updating my phone I did the following (which I cobbled together from various posts and forums):

  • Backed up and synced my iPhone with iTunes.
  • Synced my photos and videos with iPhoto and then deleted all from my iPhone to free up space.
  • Went into Settings > General > Usage and deleted any old unnecessary apps and app data which may have been taking up valuable space.
  • Updated iTunes to 11.1.x
  • Downloaded iOS 7 using the Download Only option.
  • apple ios 7
    apple ios 7

    Ensured that I had enough free space on my iPhone as issues related to bricking were happening in many cases because there were only a few MB of free space. At last check I had 15+ GB free space so no issues there.

  • Once the download completed I plugged my iPhone back into my iMac and updated via the update button in iTunes.
  • Proceeded to update my apps as they became available.


All went as planned and I was able to update my phone without any bricking issues. How about you? Have you had a chance to check out iOS 7? Let me know what you encountered on your upgrade journey.

Nokia Lumia 920 – Windows Phone 8 Review

So I’ve finally got around to playing with a Windows Phone, the Nokia Lumia 920 to be exact. < Yay for me! > I know, I know I should have been checking these things out earlier but hey running a blog with only 2 contributors (Ben Abel and Jay Kenobi) is a lot of work, plus we only do this in our spare hours.  By the way if you’re interesting guest posting let me know! Anyways I ramble. Now onto the review.

Find a Nokia Lumia 920 Black Factory Unlocked 32GB phone 4G LTE

Windows Phone 8
Windows Phone 8

So my initial thoughts and feeling about switching to a Windows Phone 8 system were many and varied. If you’ve been using one mobile operating system (OS) such as Android, iOS, or BlackBerry for some time it definitely takes the brain a while to get accustomed to the new functionality.

What I like about the Nokia Lumia 920

  • The phone itself is nice and has a good feel to it. I like the size and find it good for texting. In other words my fingers are able to press the keys and were able to hit the correct letters 9 times out of 10.
  • The camera: It claims to have Carl Zeiss optics however on closer inspection there really isn’t much in the way of optics to speak of. The camera however does take amazing photos for a mobile device. The videos are also great. If you want to see all the specifications check out the Nokia site.
  • The touch screen is very reactive. No problems here. Also I noticed the screen is hard to get dirty. There must be a special coating on it that resists fingerprints etc.
  • The three buttons on the front (back, Windows home screen, and search) These got me around quickly and easily.

What I didn’t like about the Nokia Lumia 920

  • Windows Phone 8
    Windows Phone 8

    I’m still not sure that I like the way the phone is constructed. It seems like the screen is pasted onto the front of the phone, it doesn’t seem like it’s unified on the engineering side of things. Check out the HTC One or most Apple devices and you’ll see what I mean.

  • The phone seems a bit blocky to me. Perhaps it needs some refinements in shape.

What I like about Windows Phone 8 (OS)

  • Live tiles. I love the fact that you can rearrange and change the size of the tiles at will. The live data is really great but I can see that developers are still not playing up this feature as much as they could.
  • Ease of use. It’s just easy to find what you want and with the latest release of the OS you can click a letter to go quickly to “S” where the Settings feature lives or “G” where the Games feature is.
  • Holding down the back button to see all the open Windows / Apps at a glance. This is the way multitasking should work on a mobile device.
  • The search button. I like the fact that you can search quickly from the search button. I like the quick suggestions and the auto correct features here.

What I didn’t like about Windows Phone 8 (OS)

  • I still think that system applications and settings and downloaded apps should be separated somehow on the secondary screen. It would make it a lot easier to navigate.
  • The search button is tied into Bing. This is understandable from the Microsoft perspective since the company is trying to promote it’s own search engine. It’s fine to make Bing the default but seriously Microsoft give people a way to change the option to Google! Note there is a Google app download available which works quite well so not totally a big deal.
  • WiFi options should be easier to access. I don’t want to go into Settings every time I want to connect. It would be nice if there was a quick launch for this feature.
  • It would be nice if you could kill running applications from the multitasking screen!

Find a Nokia Lumia 920 Black Factory Unlocked 32GB phone 4G LTE

If you’re already tied into Microsoft desktop products such as Windows 7 or 8 it will probably make sense to go with the Windows Phone 8 and the Nokia Lumia 920 specifically. This is a great device overall and a lot of fun to use as well. If you run a business with Microsoft Exchange server as back end then going with the Windows Phone 8 just makes sense. It’s a complete end to end ecosystem and what with BlackBerry faltering the decision to go with this platform is even easier.

Nokia Lumia 920
Nokia Lumia 920


Samsung beats Apple to the smart watch punch with Galaxy Gear

This is the announcement all of us techies have been waiting for in 2013 which is that of the first production smart watch. Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. today introduced the GALAXY Gear, a companion device that further integrates the Samsung GALAXY experience. No longer will you need to get your phone out of your pocket to simply check your notifications, time and whatnot.

“Samsung’s ongoing smart device innovation leadership reflects our commitment to listen to our consumers, who want their daily lives to be easier and more enjoyable. Samsung GALAXY Gear benefits consumers by integrating smart device technology even deeper into their everyday lives, and bridges the gap between the mobile device and fashion worlds to create truly wearable technology,” said JK Shin, CEO and President of IT & Mobile Division, Samsung Electronics. “Samsung GALAXY Gear frees users from the need to constantly check their smart devices while maintaining connections. It provides what we call ‘smart freedom,’ by allowing users to choose how, why, when and where they are connected.”
Samsung Galaxy Gear
Samsung Galaxy Gear
Experience new mobile communications freedoms
Samsung GALAXY Gear lets users to live in the moment while staying connected to their Samsung GALAXY devices. It notifies users of incoming messages, such as calls, texts, emails and alerts, delivers a preview of those messages and creates the opportunity for users to accept or discreetly ignore those messages. When an incoming message requires more than a quick glance, users can simply pick up their Samsung GALAXY devices and the Smart Relay feature will instantly reveal the full content on the screen.
Voice operation
The built-in speaker allows users to conduct hands-free calls directly from the Gear, maintaining connections to their mobile communications without disrupting their daily routines. For example, a user leaving the grocery store, whose hands are full with shopping bags, could still make a call by speaking into the GALAXY Gear without touching the screen. Users can also draft messages, create new calendar entries, set alarms, and check the weather on the GALAXY Gear with S Voice.
Capture daily life from your wrist
In addition to enabling smart device controls, Samsung GALAXY Gear introduces several features that help users easily capture life’s meaningful moments which otherwise might be missed. With the  Memographer feature, a 1.9 Megapixel camera, users who are on the move or participating in physical activities can record both photos and video to create quick, visual records of important information or events from their daily lives, as well as share them on their social networks. Extending the quick-record concept, Voice Memo lets users capture important thoughts or conversations from their wrists and save those voice recordings into texts on their Samsung GALAXY devices.
A growing list of controls for favorite features
With the GALAXY Gear, users gain a wide range of favorite features that further increase the benefits of this new accessory. New security enhancement Auto Lock automatically secures the companion smartphone screen any time that GALAXY Gear is more than 1.5 meters away from the smartphone, and then unlocks the smartphone when the companion devices are near each other again. Find My Device helps users find the location of their smart devices when they have been misplaced by making them beep, illuminate and vibrate. With Samsung GALAXY Gear, users can also control the music played on their Samsung GALAXY devices. As with traditional music players, it helps users browse, play and pause songs even when their smart device is not within reach. Finally, the GALAXY Gear also works like a Pedometer to track physical activity via enhanced, built-in sensor technology. This feature systematically and automatically monitors users so they can track key personal data such as calories burned, steps taken and distance covered.
Standalone Watch
The GALAXY Gear also serves as a wristwatch and includes several face options that create the opportunity for users to personalize their watch face. It will come preloaded with 10 different clock options and more choices will be downloadable via Samsung Apps. The GALAXY Gear experience can be further personalized by selecting from six colors that will be available at launch: Jet Black, Mocha Gray, Wild Orange, Oatmeal Beige, Rose Gold, and Lime Green.
Samsung GALAXY Gear will be launched with the GALAXY Note 3 in more than 140 countries around the world starting from September 25.
Samsung GALAXY Gear Product Specifications


800 MHz processor


1.63 inch (41.4mm) Super AMOLED (320 x 320)


1.9 Megapixel BSI Sensor, Auto Focus Camera / Sound & Shot


Codec: H.264
Format: MP4
HD(720p) Playback & Recording


Codec: AAC
Format : M4A

Featured Apps

Atooma is a contextually aware horizontal intelligence platform that makes your GALAXY Gear smarter.

Banjo gives you the power to see what’s happening right now, anywhere in the world

Evernote watch app makes it easy to remember things by quickly capturing images and memories and bringing important reminders right to GALAXY Gear.

Glympse allows people to easily share their location temporarily and in real-time, letting recipients see their movements on a dynamic map.

eBay app allows you to complete all your transactions on eBay with ease and in real-time.

Line is a global messaging service available in over 230 countries worldwide.

MyFitnessPal tracks your nutrition and exercise, empowering you to achieve your  personal health and fitness goals.

Path is the personal network designed to bring you closer to your friends and family.

Pocket, the leading way to save web content to view later on any device, brings text-to-speech article playback to GALAXY Gear.

RunKeeper is the personal trainer in your pocket, helping you track your runs, set your goals, and stay motivated.

TripIt from Concur makes it easy to organize travel plans in one place.

Vivino Wine Scanner allows you to take a photo of any wine and get to know all about it instantly.



Samsung Apps

ChatON: mobile communication service


Smart Relay, S Voice, Memographer, Voice Memo

Auto Lock, Find My Device, Media Controller, Pedometer, Stopwatch, Timer

Safety assistance: In case of emergency, press a power button 3 times continuously, and then user’s location information is transferred to the saved contacts with message.

2 Microphones (Noise Cancellation), 1 Speaker

Connectivity Bluetooth® v 4.0 + BLE


Accelerometer, Gyroscope


4GB Internal memory + 512 MB (RAM)


36.8 x 56.6 x 11.1 mm, 73.8g


Standard battery, Li-ion 315mAh

* The availability of each Samsung Hub and Google service may differ by country.

* All functionality, features, specifications and other product information provided in this document including, but not limited to, the benefits, design, pricing, components, performance, availability, and capabilities of the product are subject to change without notice or obligation.
About Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is a global leader in technology, opening new possibilities for people everywhere. Through relentless innovation and discovery, we are transforming the worlds of televisions, smartphones, personal computers, printers, cameras, home appliances, LTE systems, medical devices, semiconductors and LED solutions. We employ 270,000 people across 79 countries with annual sales of US$187.8 billion. To discover more, please visit

How much do you care about Internet freedom?

Did you know there is a movement to create a “Declaration of Internet freedom?” The site, which is managed by Free Press has a mission to, “… [build] a powerful nationwide movement to change media and technology policies, promote the public interest and strengthen democracy. Free Press advocates for universal and affordable Internet access, diverse media ownership, vibrant public media and quality journalism.” Free Press also runs a site called Save the Internet which advocates for net neutrality, “the longstanding principle that preserves our right to communicate freely online.”

In Canada, we have which, “empower[s] people to participate in Internet governance through fresh & engaging citizens’ campaigns.” Open Media has championed many successful campaigns to stop surveillance by the Canadian government such as Bill C-30, “a Bill that would have allowed unaccountable bureaucrats to invade your privacy, spy on your online activity, and access your private information at any time without a warrant.”

XKeyscore courtesy of The Guardian

So why do we need these organizations? Are we really at risk by having our governments watch our every move when we’re online?

Personally I think you have to be careful about how you word these things. Although your actions and data may be recorded and kept in databases for years to come it simply isn’t possible for someone to watch all the activity on the Internet in real time. However that being said, it is possible to zero in on an individual’s online activities. According to an article by The Guardian, “NSA analysts can use XKeyscore and other NSA systems to obtain ongoing “real-time” interception of an individual’s internet activity.”

Once everybody’s information is stored in a giant government database, data analysts can use data mining processes to piece together the puzzle of people’s lives. Problems can arise from government personnel creating queries to find suspicious activity that may not have been necessarily created by yourself, perhaps one of your dormant online accounts was hacked and used to transmit information related to a crime. There is also the possibility that things you have posted online in the past could be taken out of context or used erroneously to prosecute you in cases related to criminal activity committed by third parties.

“XKeyscore, the documents boast, is the NSA’s “widest reaching” system developing intelligence from computer networks – what the agency calls Digital Network Intelligence (DNI). One presentation claims the program covers “nearly everything a typical user does on the internet”, including the content of emails, websites visited and searches, as well as their metadata.”

Some Internet users have resorted to anonymity platforms such as Tor which stands for “The Onion Router.” According to Wikipedia, “Tor directs Internet traffic through a free, worldwide volunteer network consisting of more than three thousand relays to conceal a user’s location or usage from anyone conducting network surveillance or traffic analysis.”

Now whether using an anonymity platform is something that anyone needs to do is up for debate. I’ve read comments on sites such as Gizmodo that suggest that, “with the very small pool of nodes out there, it’s probably safe to assume that a lot of these nodes are operated by governments.” So if that’s the case should you even pursue using something like Tor? Apparently some journalists and writers are willing to take the risk that Tor will protect them from prying eyes.

I would like to encourage you to take a look at the Declaration of Internet Freedom, visit the site and sign the petition if you think our governments have gone too far in their surveillance programs.

We stand for a free and open Internet. We support transparent and participatory processes for making Internet policy and the establishment of five basic principles:

  • Expression: Don’t censor the Internet.
  • Access: Promote universal access to fast and affordable networks.
  • Openness: Keep the Internet an open network where everyone is free to connect, communicate, write, read, watch, speak, listen, learn, create and innovate.
  • Innovation: Protect the freedom to innovate and create without permission. Don’t block new technologies and don’t punish innovators for their users’ actions.
  • Privacy: Protect privacy and defend everyone’s ability to control how their data and devices are used.



My thoughts on “Elysium”: A missed opportunity

Having just seen Elysium a couple of days back I wanted to speak a little to the technology side of the movie. I was expecting a lot of cool gadgetry but what I found was actually quite different. Now remember that this movie takes place in the year 2154 so I expected to see a completely different world, nothing like ours. The habitat of Elysium mind you was very cool when I first saw it at the beginning of the movie but from there we really don’t get a view into much of the technology used in 2154. In fact the movie goes downhill after about 15 minutes.

Apparently people (on Earth) are still using laptops and monitors from 2013 which is 140 years in the past. In fact people are still driving vehicles from 2013. GMC has some product placement here and that made me wonder if the company will still exist 140 years into the future and if they will still be manufacturing identical vehicles. Whatever happened to self driving cars? If Google is working on that now shouldn’t we have self-driving vehicles by at the most 2030?

Some comments I’ve read on review sites alluded to the fact that to enter the habitat of Elysium itself the entire system needs to allow for all ships to enter the atmosphere temporarily. I would think that there would be some kind of system in place to allow a portion of the atmosphere to be compromised in order to allow a ship to gain entry.

The scenes where the Earth folk are interacting with tech to hack into the Elysium system appear to be laptops from 140 years prior. The appearance of old technology was distracting to me as when I’m watching a science fiction flick I’m expecting there to be a large degree of imagination used in designing the future worlds. I want to see self-driving cars and robots that have a huge degree of intelligence or tech even beyond this.


The Matrix did a great job of predicting a future existence and didn’t have much in the way of old artifacts except as portrayed in the Matrix itself which was a program run by machines. Elysium doesn’t really allude to the point in time where Elysium and Earth split but I suppose we have to assume that there was a nuclear holocaust around 2013 as that is where the technology is at.

This however still doesn’t add up as none of the tech is going to be operational 140 years into the future. We don’t see our streets lines with Ford Model T cars so why should earth 140 years in the future see vehicles from 2013 lining the streets? Using laptops and tablets that appear to be from 2013 is laughable. I’m sure there will be some other kinds of input devices invented between now and 2154 right?

From a futurist standpoint Elysium was a complete failure. The movie was a missed opportunity. The producers should have focused on many things such as the habitat of Elysium and the technology of that future era. There were many other things wrong with the movie including lack of character development and the acting itself. Don’t get me started on Jodie Foster’s acting which was painful to watch.

Overall I wouldn’t recommend Elysium and was disappointed with many aspects of the movie. I hope somebody plans to remake the movie in the future with a different set of producers, actors and set designers though as the premise is solid and could have been vastly more entertaining and thought provoking.