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Forward to the Future

by Evan | Jun 07, 2017
By Steve Jurvetson via Wikimedia Commons

When Han Solo slammed The Millennium Falcon into hyperdrive and the stars turned into streaks of light, it felt like you really were leaping into hyperspace. Same when Marty McFly jumped Back to the Future in a significantly souped up DeLorean.

My turn for something close came the other day when a wealthy friend took me for a ride in his Tesla Model 3. He floored the pedal and we went from here ... to there, in something like an instant. And he most definitely did not "hit the gas," because there was none. It was all electric, all the time.

The experience got me wondering how my grandfathers felt the first time they rode in automobiles. Did they anticipate how much and how quickly the world would change? My own glimpse of the future involved more than just an electric motor. The Tesla has a large touch screen dashboard that lets you read your email, change your GPS map, and much more while the car drives itself, at least along Interstate highways. 

My friend Brian said he and other drivers are sort of beta testers for Tesla. The car sends signals to Tesla HQ and the Tesla people keep coming up with improvements that are downloaded into the cars. Brian expects his car to be truly self-driving within a year. He also expects Tesla to be making a lot of more-affordable electric cars very soon. 

It's going to be hard for the library to buy books that can keep up with such a rapidly developing change in transportation, but we do have this new title at Shawnee: Tesla Model S by Julio Diaz. Okay, it's a children's book, but most of us are children at this point in the electric car world. We also have a 2015 book by John J. Fialka titled Car Wars: The Rise, the Fall, and the Resurgence of the Electric Car. Plus, if you are interested in Tesla founder Elon Musk, check out Ashlee Vance's Elon Musk: Tesla, Space X, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future

If you want to share an experience about the technological future, please add a comment below. 

EvanEvan - Married, three children, two grandchildren, formerly a newspaper journalist, now a public librarian, at all times a board game nut.

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