Clairvoyant Technology

The Future According to Bond, James Bond

Since 1962, and lately in infuriatingly irregular episodes, the world has been enrapt with the adventures of Ian Fleming’s rather prescient James Bond.

It’s a tough job saving the world

He’s survived laser beams whose intention was to cut him in half. He narrowly avoided been tossed into a pond with piranha fish keen to strip him to the bone. Rocket exhaust has been seconds away from reducing him to ash. Well, think of any desperate no-way-out scenarios and our James has found a way out of them. And all this whilst saving the world at least 21 of the 25 times we’ve seen him on screen. To be fair, he didn’t have to save the world in the other four – his missions in those were just slightly less apocalyptic. Mind you, he also had to face a seemingly invincible box office enemy in later years as well; Mission Impossible.

But perhaps the biggest threat to his existence has been gender balance and, latterly, the woke generation. Well, 007 has found a way out of those, too. We’ve seen him evolve from being ‘a cold war relic and misogynistic dinosaur’ to a loving father in a committed relationship. That last thing didn’t last too long, but there you go.

As every last Bond movie ended, the audience were treated to a final title: JAMES BOND WILL RETURN, and perhaps that was the biggest thrill of all, knowing that we were in for more magic.

The future looked both terrifying and cool

But apart from creating the allure of ‘men wanting to be him and women wanting to be with him’, there is something else which has fascinated audiences in the 60+ years that MI5’s favourite son has been with us: the display of clairvoyant technology. Simply, gadgets and stuff that don’t yet exist. The production company people responsible for the Bond series, EON, were very clever. They kept their ears to the ground by engaging constantly with MIT in America and UK Armed Forces Technology Division.

Look familiar?

The jet packs you may have seen in formation with an Emirates Airline A380 in the skies above Dubai recently? The prototype was first seen in the 1965 nuclear thriller Thunderball.

Smartphones, now just an integral tool in our everyday lives, actually made their debut in 1997’s Tomorrow Never Dies. In this outing, the eternally dapper Pierce Brosnan uses a phone to drive his car, amongst other tasks. If that isn’t clairvoyant technology, what is?

Whilst these and the many other Bond/tech factoids are interesting to some while being shoulder-shrugging fodder to others, there is the spectre (great pun, right?) of the technology on show in No Time to Die. It is not fun and certainly not exhibited in the usual tongue-in-cheek matter. But it is real and given the awful realities of the recent pandemic, should be turning those shoulder shrugs into shudders of horror.

Hunter-killer nanobots with a pre-programmed target? In the sixties, that explanation would have been immediately followed by a Doctor Evil laugh of Olympian proportions.

But we are not in the sixties anymore, Toto. The sophistication of this type of biotech is real and probably even more advanced than the writers of No Time to Die would have us believe. Mind you, there was one line that brilliantly captured the zeitgeist of the recent pandemic, delivered by Daniel Craig.

“So, people become the weapons?”

Jet packs, smartphones, heat signature recognition, signature firearms, video conferencing. All introduced in Bond movies, to name but a few.

And now this: people become the weapons. Remind you of anything in the last few years?

On that note, there’s no other way to end this article about clairvoyant technology than to leave you with this:

Good luck.

Inside Telecom provides you with an extensive list of content covering all aspects of the tech industry. Keep an eye on our Tech to stay informed and up-to-date with our daily articles.