Sunday, 14 February 2010

Computer movies suck!

After watching six seasons of 24, I wondered for another time, why is computer science so badly represented in movies in general? There are some so common obvious mistakes like huge sized letters in received e-mails or IPs with 10bit pairs that you'd think they would know by now how to avoid them. And then there is so much random tech jargon that in the ears of a computer or science illiterate sounds plausible but if you are into it then it can be fucking hilarious at best. Apart from the classics like "You should try to reverse the polarity!" or "Have you tried to extend the parameters?" (I don't know why but I have heard this so many times in 24), one of my most favorite I have read about (it's in transformers, I haven't seen the movie) is "The signal pattern is learning, it's EVOLVING on its own, and you need to move past Fourier transforms and start thinking quantum mechanics". I don't know if I want to laugh or to cry :P

Another thing I have noticed is the way all the user interfaces look and act like. Every little click makes a futuristic sounding blip. When someone tries to search in a database, the results appear slowly letter after letter with a continuous bleeping sound. If they have to search for a subject, hundreds of photos are displayed rapidly on the screen. Little windows of data pop up with bleeping sounds which if you pause the movie and try to read it's contents, it can be everything, from random hex or binary codes to senseless mixes of php, html, C++, Visual Basic and some random assembly code. Needless to say that the user is typing like a lunatic while all these things appear on the screen (He even types frantically while shouting "Come on! Come on!!!" at the screen as a download bar progresses, like he could push it faster or something :P).

Of course, a lot of these things might be intentional. Mostly done to add a special futuristic effect, something that I guessed correctly. As for the rest, filmmakers don't care enough since most of the viewers won't notice. But something funny I was thinking, when comparing with movies about doctors or lawyers or any other profession. Mistakes happen there too (I usually don't notice or care about, e.g. in House M.D.) but in my opinion the mistakes and senseless tech jargon concerning computers are so much worse and more obvious than for example movies with doctors, that if the same bad mistakes were happening in those kind of movies, we would hear a patient saying "Ahh,. my head hurts, I think I broke a cancerous nephelim!" while touching his foot and the doctor replying "Don't worry! Your thyrormone is in an upscale. All you need is a metastasis of tuberculosis on your blood vesel. It's all about hormones! I will give you a CT scan and you will just be fine.". Yes! That's how a doctor's movie would be like if it carried the same absurdity of mistakes and jargon as computer movies.

Is it just me or are computers badly represented in movies? Also, don't forget to check Computer movies suck for some more hilarity!!!

p.s. Oh, a friend also told me of a movie (I think it was the new Knight Rider) where KIT's memory was stolen and he said they need a supercomputer to download it and one child accidentally downloaded a portion of these data from the internet (of course, if you download files from the internet, they disappear from the server :) and it all ended up playing Halo on the X-box to acquire the missing file which appeared like a glowing orb. What The Heck? (Gotta see this movie, just for the hilarity! Or maybe not :P)

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