Today is the 50th anniversary of Star Trek! Us history lovers tend to have a smidge of “trekker” in us. Why? Well, I read a quote somewhere in which a historian answered that question by saying “we are all nerds.” (Or something like that. I wish I could recall who said it. Anybody know?) Now, I know there are a lot of people out there that just don’t get it, but I want to try to make you aware of just how much all our lives today are shaped by the Star Trek universe. It has been well documented that a large amount of the technology that we rely on every single day (from the automatic doors at grocery stores, to our cell phones, to our laptops and computer pads) were created by people that acknowledge being directly inspired by the technology they saw on the show. Those of us that love all the various Trek shows and movies have long been aware of this fact, but others of you maybe not so much. So to educate yourself, take a look at this piece from the Washington Post, or better yet, this longer list from Quartz (one quibble, the list names tech that was “predicted” by Star Trek, when it truth most of it was actually inspired by the visions of Star Trek writers). Now, if you are not already a Trek fan, I doubt any of this will turn you into one, but hopefully you’ll come away knowing that whether you like it or not, that nerdy show has had a major impact on your life.
But forget the tech stuff, the show made history in many ways. Here’s a good list of just eight ways the original Star Trek made history.