25 February 2012

The "computer" in movies and TV shows

I cannot count how many times I've seen movies (especially Hollywood sci-fi's) show a computer as some thing very alien or "sci-fi-like" or "futuristic" or... well, you get the idea. Computers, or more specifically what the monitor shows, in these movies do not look like the computers we all know: a windows desktop, a Linux shell/desktop, or a Mac. They are deliberately made to look like something mere mortals cannot understand, let alone work with (think the X-Men series).
For one they always beep when a window pops up or they show the wretched thing processing some command (showing a HUGE list of files, or searching...?). Kerrrrrrrrr...........plink...pink...bigger plink.... and the window goes blink...blink....blink. And the beep isn't even a windows-like alert, its just *alien*! 
The colour scheme is almost always something like matrix-green on black background, or a neon blue, or some other weird "alien" colour. I think you know what I'm talking about. I mean, the UI doesn't look user friendly at all! It seems to be designed to confuse you. I believe if I try to open my "D drive" or "home directory" on of these, it would throw a condescending "what the hell do you want, you moron" message in my face, top it with a plink...blink...sound and shut itself down. (rolls eyes)
Okay, I understand all too well that these computers are meant to be very *secure* and all (atleast thats the intended message), but hey, I seriously doubt if even the top-secret military or research facilities have computers that don't look real, and people who work with them actually have to forget all they EVER knew about a computer and start from the very first scratch.
Google 'computers in movies' and you'll see what I mean.
I mean, come on!! People have been using computers in homes for ever now, PLEASE stop portraying them as alien machines in the movies! Grow up! (rolls eyes, again)
I was watching Tron Legacy for the very first time on HBO recently and it made me laugh with relief when I saw the guy type "whoami" on a command prompt and IIRC the computer did not let out those cute little alien beeps as it responded. The character then went on to type a few more commands that were so familiar and real-world: he checked out the command history, maybe even typed a "grep" somewhere. :-) Now, THAT made sense, thank you very much! 


  1. ahaaa tron legacy....that guy literally use ps command and kill -9 ..lol ;)
    But ya gud observatn bro!! its great to notic such things..and pen them down...
    One such thing i remmbr is the use f guitar in the movies...in the relatively older movies, hardly ne 1 used to hold the guitar proprly and they used to swing the guitr as if mettalica is perfrming ;)
    But yaa...very true and very well written article...u jst gave one more reason to me to b ur fan :)
    God bless