1977 was a memorable year. The first all-in-one home computer was demonstrated at the Consumer Electronics Show, Apple Computers is founded, snow falls in Miami for the only time in recorded history, the space shuttle has its first test flight and Elvis Presley performs his final concert before dying later that year. All of that pales in comparison to what happened on May 25 when George Lucas took the world to a place a long time ago and a galaxy far, far away. The movie Star Wars changed the world. Since that day its fans have marveled at the technology used and have wondered, could it one day be a reality here? Yes, it can and we are getting closer to that day.

Luke Skywalker’s bionic hand

The Empire Strikes Back is a dark movie made even darker at the end when the world was told about Luke Skywalker’s lineage after losing his hand to Darth Vader. As the movie ends Skywalker is given a bionic arm that seems to work just as well if not better than his flesh and bone arm. Artificially replacing a lost limb is nothing new, prosthetics have been used since Ancient Egypt and were truly pioneered to help the hundreds of thousands of veterans of the Civil War return to a normal life. Skywalker’s was a bit different, as he basically got complete functionality back which is something that modern prosthetics cannot do though that is changing. The Michelangelo Hand features seven different grip patterns and allows for control of the thumb giving an amputee much more control. Combine that with some prosthetics which are able to be manipulated by brain waves Skywalker’s bionic hand is not too far-fetched, even if the wearer lacks the grip strength to use a lightsaber. These have been reality since 2015 thanks to scientists and engineers working for Johns Hopkins University.

Luke Skywalker’s landspeeder

Every teenager in 1977 was certainly in awe of young Luke Skywalker’s flying car. Some adults probably were too and that was before audiences got to see what the big cities like on Coruscant were like. Humans have been dreaming of having a flying car for a long time. It has just become reality in 2018 with the successful demonstration of several different models. Sure they may not be levitated quite like Luke’s is but it’s a start. As far as the anti gravity levitation goes scientists at CERN as working with antimatter particles to see if this is possible. So far results have not been promising so if you want a land speeder you might have to settle for a hovercraft for now.

Luke Skywalker’s binoculars

Another cool toy that Luke Skywalker had were his binoculars that he used to search for the missing R2-D2 before running into the Sand People. They produced a 3D image that gave more clarity to what he was seeing. These exist, the DEV-50V binoculars developed by Sony not only have 3D displays but an incredible zoom rate as well!

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