Deadman's Blog

Posted on Feb 27th 2012 at 02:21:22 PM by (Deadman)
Posted under Travel, Flight, tracking, atari, simulator

This is truly an amazing world we live in - modern technology allows us to carry around in our pockets a device which would make the tricorder from Star Trek seem out of date.   Our televisions are 1/2" thick and 80 inches across.    Our video games look so real that someone stepping out of 1982 probably would not be able to distinguish real combat footage to that of Modern Warfare 3.     But today I'm astounded by how small we've made our world through travel.   

I dropped my wife off at the airport here in Dallas this morning at around 9:30am and went to work.    At 12:45 I received a text on my better-than-Star-Trek iPhone telling me that she's landed and taxiing to the gate, but of course I knew that already.   I use the Flight Tracker websites that are fairly abundant on the internet to see exactly where the plane is in real time.    It took her McDonnell Douglas MD-80 approximately 18 minutes to cross the entire state of Mississippi!    18 minutes!!   She crossed a STATE in less time that it takes to make Au Gratin potatoes in the oven!    She crossed the remaining states of Alabama and Georgia is just over 45 minutes!   I can barely get home from a Dallas Cowboys loss in that amount of time!   

Watching that tiny jet-shaped icon move across the states in real-time like that illuminated to me how much we take travel for granted.    The flight from Dallas to Jacksonville, Florida had a gate-to-gate time of 1 hour 56 minutes.    This would have taken the pioneers 2 weeks or more!    Our great- grandfathers in their locomotives could make that trip in a "speedy" 2 days.    I have driven much of this country on vacations and would never give up those road trips for anything, but knowing that my 17 hour drive from Las Vegas to home would only take me 2 hours is always tempting.

You may be asking yourself "what the heck does this have to do with gaming??"    Well, nothing really.   But I did flashback to playing early Flight Simulators on my Atari 400 computer in 1984, and when I get home from work tonight, I am going to sit with my two boys and pull that Atari out of the closet.    We will pop in some vintage games, maybe play some Submarine Commander or Beach Head.   But eventually I'll pop in the Flight Sim so I can see how far we've come from playing a game that simulates showing you real-time flight stats to watching my wife fly from Texas to Florida in a true "God's Eye View".

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