There is technology, and then there is the popular imagination of that technology. Even in our increasingly-tech-savvy society, there’s often a gap between the two, conscious and subconscious.

The imagination of how image processing might work, though, is especially incredible. If you haven’t seen the video above, it’s hilarious – and familiar. Perhaps the greatest gap between how technology works and how we fantasize it could work has to do with our own intelligence. We’re able to “zoom” our perception on tiny details, so why shouldn’t digital imaging? We have powers of speech, analysis, and logic, so why shouldn’t super-intelligent robots, too?

I wonder, though – have these kinds of chuckle-inducing clips decreased in frequency, as average users work more with software like Photoshop?

If nothing else, the bar remains set at this level of magical capabilities. If 50s kids dreamt of flying cars and space travel, now we wish for a hyper-powerful version of Adobe Creative Suite. And if that doesn’t say something about our modern society, I don’t know what does.

  • haha….. was just thinking of these sequences after seeing this real world image analysis of a photoshop disaster. it's pretty impressive to see the non hollywood version in action:

    ps: good to see CDM back up !

  • Hilarious video.

    Those are interesting links Zach, though I feel like they're a little quick to jump to some of those conclusions given the analysis.

  • Such a beautiful video. Of course, there is quite a lot of extra detail you can get from fiddling around with images, but the level of "enhance" given by Hollywood is utterly ridiculous.

    My least favorite TV trope is the "levels of firewall" which have to be breached by hackers. So painful.

  • “Got an image enhancer that can bitmap?”

    “Enlarge the Z-axis” ?!?

    Those, and using the word “vector” as an intransitive verb like that nearly netted the “most clueless lines”-award for MacGyver’s writers, but the winner must be:

    **casual glance at screen** – “The eigenvalue is off.”

    Funny montage. If you get a chance, watch the image enhancement scene in the Indian movie Soldier for a laugh. The one where our hero uses Kai’s Remove Fake Moustache Filter to reveal who the bad guy is.

  • neb

    It occurs to me that the popular (mis)conceptions in digital media cast shadows on some deep questions. Looking at information fidelity we're dealing with noise, entropy, and ultimately plumbing the smallest denominators of our perceived realities. While pop is fixated on the glossy intrigue of hidden meaning, looking closer exposes some big "whoas" as well.

  • francoe

    Like a sarcastic metaphore about the power of the applications.

    the zach links are fucking funny too!