History Main / TheAestheticsOfTechnology

8th Sep '16 3:32:54 AM Elfkaiser
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* The five factions of ''VideoGame/{{Battleborn}}'' have different aesthetics when it comes to their technology.
** [[TheAlliance The UPR]] has a modern military look to them and their tech. They are rather ulitarian as they prefer function over fashion in this regard. They're however not as advanced as factions like the LLC and the Jennerit whose tech are just as sophisticated in level as they are in appearance.
** [[ArmyOfThievesAndWhores The Rogues]] have a duct taped together look to their tech which fits in line with their principles of freedom. It's all scavenged and cobbled together from tech from other factions such as the UPR and doesn't have a real sense of uniformity. With such a look that's all over the place, their technology is likewise as such and can't exactly be considered overall advanced.
** [[NatureHero The Eldrid]] use OrganicTechnology and the like that harmonizes with the natural laws of the Universe. As such their technology has a very natural and ancient looking aesthetic to it. Due to their millennia worth of history, it's actually more sophisticated than it appears to be. It's just that they refuse to exhibit their technology's sophistication in a way that clashes with nature like the other factions do.
** [[TheEmpire The Jennerit]] are one of the more high tech of the factions and are capable of using dark energies to bend the universe's laws to suit their needs. As such the aesthetic of their technology reflects how both advance and dark it is. The aesthetic's best described by WordOfGod as "Gothic Tron" which mixes dark foreboding Gothic art with the art visuals from ''Film/{{Tron}}''.
** [[ProudMerchantRace The LLC]] are the most technology oriented of the factions. They however value fashion just as much as function in accordance of their wealth showcasing principles. Thus the aesthetic of the LLC's technology is extremely clean and shiny with a lot of Victorian inspired ornate designs decorated about. It's best described by WordOfGod which states that if the aesthetic of the Jennerit is "Gothic Tron" then the LLC's is "SteamPunk Tron".
10th Aug '16 6:16:52 PM UmbrellasWereAwesome
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** In games from ''VideoGame/{{Halo 4}}'' onward, UNSC weapons, though they're still mostly blocky and projectile-based, have taken on a considerably shinier and "future-y" appearance, and it's stated that the UNSC has been able to close much of the tech gap with the Covenant, even surpassing them in some areas. This is also particularly apparent with the visual evolution of the Spartans' MJOLNIR PoweredArmor; the earlier MJOLNIR favored by S-[=IIs=] and [=IIIs=] tends to be blocky and utilitarian-looking, while the current MJOLNIR favored by Spartan-[=IVs=] tends to be smooth and rather fancy-looking.

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** In games from ''VideoGame/{{Halo 4}}'' onward, UNSC weapons, though they're still mostly blocky and projectile-based, have taken on a considerably shinier and "future-y" more futuristic appearance, and it's stated that the UNSC has been able to close much of the tech gap with the Covenant, even surpassing them in some areas. This is also particularly apparent with the visual evolution of the Spartans' MJOLNIR PoweredArmor; the earlier MJOLNIR favored by S-[=IIs=] and [=IIIs=] tends to be blocky and utilitarian-looking, while the current and more advanced MJOLNIR favored by Spartan-[=IVs=] tends to be smooth and rather fancy-looking.
10th Aug '16 6:14:39 PM UmbrellasWereAwesome
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* In the ''Franchise/{{Halo}}'' series, the Covenant have sleek, brightly colored weapons and armor and fire plasma instead of bullets. However, the human weapons are just as effective, if not more so, and the Brute weapons are incredibly powerful despite looking absolutely ancient in design.
** Brute and UNSC weapons are effective but Covenant weapons are generally considered better. Plasma melts armor and ignites clothing, and on a larger scale boils through ships and reduces whole planets to cinder and glass within hours (and with not all that many ships). Though the Covenant's belief that tools of war should be beautiful probably reduces their effectiveness somewhat, if nothing else they take more time and labor to produce.
*** Despite being cool and futuristic, most of the Covenant's weapons are simply different rather than better. Their plasma rifles take down shields more reliably but don't have the firepower of human rifles, sniper-wise the similarity is even closer. Their ship-board plasma weapons are devastating, but the MAC guns on human ships can also destroy enemies in one shot. In the first game, one (AI-controlled) human ship takes on 12 similarly-sized CCS battlecruisers and destroys or disables half of them before being knocked out, though it is hinted that the Covenant were trying to board and capture the ship outright rather than obliterate it. In general, the Covenant don't use any weapon with any effect that humans can't replicate with apparently less advanced ballistics/explosives; though GameplayAndStorySegregation probably accounts for much of it, as Covenant weapons tend to be much more deadly in the ExpandedUniverse.
** It should be noted that the Brutes seem quite happy to use looted human weapons such as the shotgun. It is also worth considering that plasma weapons are quite effective against the Covenant themselves; projectiles don't perform too well against shielded opponents, but against unshielded foes (such as humans or Flood) projectiles are every bit as useful and often more so.
** The [=M12=] Light Reconnaissance Vehicle, better known as the Warthog or the [[Machinima/RedVsBlue Puma]], doesn't look like it should be used in 2552, but has seemingly unpoppable tires. In canon, the Warthog doesn't need gasoline. It actually runs on water.
** ''Halo: First Strike'' clearly shows what humans can do if they get their hands on a piece of Covenant tech. Master Chief and Cortana capture a Covenant flagship, and Cortana almost immediately realizes the true potential of the ship's weapons and drives ''by changing the settings''. When the on-board Covenant AI sees what she's doing, it screams "Blasphemy!" and tries to stop her. So not only are the Covenant unwilling to experiment, they also deliberately cripple their [=AIs=] with pointless restrictions. Until recently, they didn't even HAVE [=AIs=], as they were banned due to the (true) story of Mendicant Bias.
*** This is because most of the Covenant's technology is scavenged and/or (poorly) reverse-engineered from lost-and-found Forerunner tech; they've barely figured it out enough to get to work at all.
*** In addition, it is also hinted that the Covenant do not even know how to reload the weapons they reverse-engineer, or at least do not know of an efficient way to do so; apparently, Covenant rules of engagement dictate that if your plasma weapon runs out of charge, simply discard it and take one from a fallen comrade.

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* In the ''Franchise/{{Halo}}'' series, the ''Franchise/{{Halo}}'':
** The
Covenant mostly have sleek, brightly colored weapons and armor armor, and largely fire plasma instead of bullets. However, the human Human weapons are just as effective, if not more so, blocky and the Brute weapons are incredibly powerful despite drab (with many looking absolutely ancient in design.
** Brute
like modern-day real-life ones), and UNSC weapons are effective but mostly fire projectiles. In-universe, standard Covenant weapons are generally considered better. Plasma melts armor and ignites clothing, and on a larger scale boils through ships and reduces whole planets can reduce much of a planet to cinder and glass within hours (and with not all that many ships). Though the Covenant's belief that tools of war should be beautiful probably reduces Additionally, UNSC spaceships usually need to outnumber their effectiveness somewhat, if nothing else Covenant counterparts by at least three-to-one in order to have even a slight chance of winning. The main thing holding the Covenant back is that they're reluctant to improve or even better understand their own technology, due to having reverse-engineered it from Forerunner tech (which they take more time and labor to produce.
*** Despite being cool and futuristic, most of the Covenant's weapons are simply different rather than better. Their plasma rifles take down shields more reliably but don't have the firepower of
consider holy relics). That said, human rifles, sniper-wise tech can still hold its own in the similarity is even closer. Their ship-board plasma weapons are devastating, but right hands; in the MAC guns on human ships can also destroy enemies in one shot. In the first game, beginning of ''VideoGame/HaloCombatEvolved'', one (AI-controlled) human ship takes on 12 similarly-sized CCS battlecruisers and destroys or disables half manages to destroy four of them before being knocked out, and cripple at least one other, though it is hinted the books reveal that the Covenant were trying to board and capture the ship outright rather than just obliterate it. it.
** [[GameplayAndStorySegregation Gameplay-wise]], the Covenant's weapons are simply different rather than better. For example, their plasma rifles take down shields more reliably, but usually don't have the firepower of human rifles, and the two sides' sniper weapons are basically identical.
In general, vehicle combat, the player with the UNSC one will often have the advantage.
** Within
the Covenant don't use any weapon with any effect that humans can't replicate with apparently less advanced ballistics/explosives; though GameplayAndStorySegregation probably accounts for much itself, Brute weapons often look ancient and scrapped-together, and tend to fire projectiles instead of it, as plasma. Additionally, they tend to favor metal blades over plasma ones. The Brutes themselves are generally considered simple-minded primitives by the rest of the Covenant, but their weapons can hold their own against standard Covenant weapons tend to be much more deadly in the ExpandedUniverse.
** It should be noted that the Brutes
plasma ones. Interestingly, they also seem quite happy to use looted human weapons such as the shotgun. It is also worth considering that plasma weapons are quite effective against the Covenant themselves; projectiles don't perform too well against shielded opponents, but against unshielded foes (such as humans or Flood) projectiles are every bit as useful and often more so.
shotgun.
** The [=M12=] Light Reconnaissance Vehicle, better known as the Warthog or the [[Machinima/RedVsBlue Puma]], doesn't look like it should be used in 2552, but has seemingly unpoppable tires. In canon, the Warthog Also, it doesn't need gasoline. It gasoline; it actually runs on water.
** ''Halo: First Strike'' clearly shows what humans can do if they get their hands In games from ''VideoGame/{{Halo 4}}'' onward, UNSC weapons, though they're still mostly blocky and projectile-based, have taken on a piece of Covenant tech. Master Chief considerably shinier and Cortana capture a Covenant flagship, "future-y" appearance, and Cortana almost immediately realizes it's stated that the true potential UNSC has been able to close much of the ship's weapons and drives ''by changing the settings''. When the on-board Covenant AI sees what she's doing, it screams "Blasphemy!" and tries to stop her. So not only are the Covenant unwilling to experiment, they also deliberately cripple their [=AIs=] tech gap with pointless restrictions. Until recently, they didn't the Covenant, even HAVE [=AIs=], as they were banned due to the (true) story of Mendicant Bias.
***
surpassing them in some areas. This is because most also particularly apparent with the visual evolution of the Covenant's Spartans' MJOLNIR PoweredArmor; the earlier MJOLNIR favored by S-[=IIs=] and [=IIIs=] tends to be blocky and utilitarian-looking, while the current MJOLNIR favored by Spartan-[=IVs=] tends to be smooth and rather fancy-looking.
** Played straight with Forerunner technology, especially from ''VideoGame/{{Halo 4}}'' onward. Forerunner constructions tend to be a shiny gray-silver and highly ornate, often with glowy highlights, and their guns fire HardLight and other exotic energies. Their
technology is scavenged and/or (poorly) reverse-engineered from lost-and-found Forerunner tech; they've barely figured it out enough consistently stated to get to work at all.
*** In addition, it is also hinted that
be far beyond what the Covenant do not even know how to reload current races of the galaxy have, and gameplay often reflects this, with Promethean weapons they reverse-engineer, or at least do not know of an efficient way to do so; apparently, Covenant rules of engagement dictate that if your plasma weapon runs out of charge, simply discard it and take one from a fallen comrade. being among the most powerful in the game.
5th Jul '16 12:34:24 PM StClair
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** Played straight for the pilot. The front cockpit's instrument panel is populated entirely by round analog dials. No digital readouts, no cathode-ray tubes, no flat-panel LCDs.
*** The '''back'''seat cockpit, on the other hand, is where the Reconnaissance Systems Operator's instruments are, and while the vast majority of that instrument panel's content is STILL classified top-secret, we ''do'' know that the communication radios were controlled by the RSO, and '''not''' the pilot, which many Blackbird pilots admitted they initially found frustrating, since in any other plane, the pilot talks directly to air-traffic control himself, without a middle-man.
** For a bit of perspective, consider this: a titanium-skinned ''spaceplane'' that shrinks and expands up to three feet (one meter) in flight, has fuel so exotic it was also used as a coolant, read the stars to find out where it was (no GPS) and the engine and oil tanks had to be lined with ''gold'' because of the sheer amount of thermal-conductive cooling needed. Its engines were a mix of a standard turbojet and a ramjet, a mostly passive engine that requires you to be going half the speed of sound for it to even ''work''. It could go from New York to London in just under two hours. Now consider that it was designed in the '60s, with nothing more computationally complex than a '''slide rule'''.
*** It also had one of the most advanced air-conditioners of its day to keep the pilot from cooking in the cockpit and special paint for better cooling.
*** Also, the final one set a new world air-speed record on it's way to the museum...just because it could.
* The F-117 "Stealth Fighter" was actually a light bomber. Looks futuristic. Each one was [[WeWillUseManualLaborInTheFuture built by hand]] with electronics from other more mundane aircraft (including the C-130). One was shot down over Serbia. When it was retired there was an outcry in the defense press. Why was such an advanced craft headed to storage? It was obsolete, the program that designed the faceted shape was decades old. Its hand built construction made repairs and upgrades difficult because each airplane is an AceCustom.

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** Played straight for the pilot. The front cockpit's instrument panel is populated entirely by round analog dials. No digital readouts, no cathode-ray tubes, no flat-panel LCDs.
[=LCDs=].
*** The '''back'''seat cockpit, on the other hand, is where the [[GuyInBack Reconnaissance Systems Operator's Operator]]'s instruments are, and while the vast majority of that instrument panel's content is STILL classified top-secret, we ''do'' know that the communication radios were controlled by the RSO, and '''not''' the pilot, which many Blackbird pilots admitted they initially found frustrating, since in any other plane, the pilot talks directly to air-traffic control himself, without a middle-man.
** For a bit of perspective, consider this: a titanium-skinned ''spaceplane'' that shrinks and expands up to three feet (one meter) in flight, has fuel so exotic it was also used as a coolant, read the stars to find out where it was (no GPS) and the engine and oil tanks had to be lined with ''gold'' because of the sheer amount of thermal-conductive cooling needed. Its engines were a mix of a standard turbojet and a ramjet, a mostly passive engine that requires you to be going half the speed of sound for it to even ''work''. It could go from New York to London in just under two hours. Now consider that it was designed in the '60s, with nothing more computationally complex than a '''slide rule'''.
*** It also had one of the most advanced air-conditioners of its day to keep the pilot crew from cooking in the cockpit and special paint for better cooling.
*** Also, the final one set a new world air-speed record on it's its way to the museum...museum... just because it could.
* The F-117 "Stealth Fighter" was actually a light bomber. Looks futuristic. Each one was [[WeWillUseManualLaborInTheFuture built by hand]] with electronics from other more mundane aircraft (including the C-130). One was shot down over Serbia. When it was retired there was an outcry in the defense press. Why was such an advanced craft headed to storage? It was obsolete, obsolete: the program that designed the faceted shape was decades old. Its hand built old, and its hand-built construction made repairs and upgrades difficult because each airplane is an AceCustom.



*** The F-117 was an aerodynamic abomination designed and built at a time when the most powerful supercomputers in the world weren't capable of calculating the radar return signal from curved surfaces. When the F-117 was designed practically all aircraft in the world could be tracked by radar.

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*** The F-117 was an aerodynamic abomination designed and built at a time when the most powerful supercomputers in the world weren't capable of calculating the radar return signal from curved surfaces. When the F-117 was designed designed, practically all aircraft in the world could be tracked by radar.
5th Jul '16 12:22:31 PM StClair
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In rare cases, some design choices ''do'' age well, which can make them appear more modern now than when they were first produced. Stanley Kubrick's adaptation of Film/TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey is an excellent example: in utilizing the minimalistic AsceticAesthetic design fad of the 1960's as the primary design aesthetic, it inadvertently matches today's vision that EverythingIsAnIPodInTheFuture in numerous instances, such as Hal's interfaces being a simple red lens and speaker on a plain surface, rather than a complex panel covered in buttons, switches, and blinking lights, and his core oddly similar to modern plug-in server rack layouts.

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In rare cases, some design choices ''do'' age well, which can make them appear more modern now than when they were first produced. Stanley Kubrick's adaptation of Film/TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey is an excellent example: in utilizing the minimalistic AsceticAesthetic design fad of the 1960's as the primary design aesthetic, it inadvertently matches today's vision that EverythingIsAnIPodInTheFuture in numerous instances, such as Hal's interfaces being a simple red lens and speaker on a plain surface, rather than a complex panel covered in buttons, switches, and blinking lights, and his core is oddly similar to modern plug-in server rack layouts.



Note that this is completely [[InvertedTrope inverted]] by SufficientlyAdvancedBambooTechnology, where extremely advanced technology appears deceptively primitive in the form of stones, crysals, idols, monuments or ancient ruins.

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Note that this is completely [[InvertedTrope inverted]] by SufficientlyAdvancedBambooTechnology, where extremely advanced technology appears deceptively primitive in the form of stones, crysals, crystals, idols, monuments or ancient ruins.
7th Jun '16 3:08:50 PM TheKaizerreich
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*** On valid (and yet [[NoPlansNoPrototypeNoBackup incredibly silly]]) reason why the A-10 is to be retired is its own complexity. The special polymer that is used to make an A-10's hull cannot be produced anymore, the recipes of which had been stored on old computers (which no longer function) and the US Air Force has stated that nobody among its ranks still knows the recipe or has any notes left. The Warthogs still in service always have to be repaired by canibalising parts from others which were already retired, which will eventually deplete the whole fleet... but it will take a while since the A-10 ''is'' known to be absurdly sturdy.
25th May '16 7:49:23 PM FloydPinkerton
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** One notable bit is that the Republic Venator Class Star Destroyer is notably more advanced looking than it's sucessor, the Imperial Class (The iconic "Flying Triangle") Star Destroyer, with a more effective placement of fighter bays, engines, and bridge, and an overall "Sleeker" appearance. On the other hand, the Imperial is [[OurWeaponsWillBeBoxyInTheFuture a triangular box with a box on the top]] and 3 engines.

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** One notable bit is that the Republic Venator Class Star Destroyer is notably more advanced looking than it's sucessor, successor, the Imperial Class (The iconic "Flying Triangle") Star Destroyer, with a more effective placement of fighter bays, engines, and bridge, and an overall "Sleeker" appearance. On the other hand, the Imperial is [[OurWeaponsWillBeBoxyInTheFuture a triangular box with a box on the top]] and 3 engines.


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*** Also note that the Venator and Acclamator classes are shown inside a planetary atmosphere, giving them a reason to be more streamlined than the Imperial class, which operates in a vacuum.
20th May '16 9:54:55 PM RurikWolfe
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Design aesthetics also change over time, totally independent of technology. In the 1950s, people thought that flares and tail fins looked futuristic. But we have just reached the [[TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture impossibly far-off AD 2016]], and very few things have tail fins, aside from actual fish, airplanes, and the Batmobile.[[note]]Even the Batmobile [[Film/TheDarkKnightSaga recently got rid of 'em.]][[/note]] Ironically, things like flares and tail fins now [[{{Zeerust}} look decidedly retro]]: recent models of the Ford Thunderbird have fins to keep the ''vintage'' '50s feel.

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Design aesthetics also change over time, totally independent of technology. In the 1950s, people thought that flares and tail fins looked futuristic. But we have just reached the [[TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture impossibly far-off AD 2016]], and very few things have tail fins, aside from actual fish, airplanes, and the Batmobile.[[note]]Even the Batmobile [[Film/TheDarkKnightSaga recently got rid of 'em.]][[/note]] Ironically, things like flares and tail fins now [[{{Zeerust}} look decidedly retro]]: recent models of the Ford Thunderbird have fins to keep the ''vintage'' '50s feel.feel[[note]]...or would, if they had fins. They're shaped more like bars of soap[[/note]].
18th May '16 9:39:08 PM StevieC
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*** The [[https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7a/Dream_Chaser_pre-drop_tests.6.jpg SNC DreamChaser]] is the odd-man-out in next-gen manned-spacecraft designs, being a derivative of NASA's cancelled [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HL-20_Personnel_Launch_System HL-20 Personnel Launch System]], which was a proposed "space-taxi" designed to launch vertically and land on a runway like the Space Shuttle, and carry up to 7 astronauts like the Shuttle, but without expending fuel for all that extra cargo-haul capability.

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*** The [[https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7a/Dream_Chaser_pre-drop_tests.6.jpg SNC DreamChaser]] is the odd-man-out in [[TheLastOfTheseIsNotLikeTheOthers odd man out]] among next-gen manned-spacecraft designs, being a derivative of NASA's cancelled [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HL-20_Personnel_Launch_System HL-20 Personnel Launch System]], which was a proposed "space-taxi" designed to launch vertically and land on a runway like the Space Shuttle, and carry up to 7 astronauts like the Shuttle, but without expending fuel for all that extra cargo-haul capability.
18th May '16 9:36:45 PM StevieC
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*** The [[https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7a/Dream_Chaser_pre-drop_tests.6.jpg SNC DreamChaser]] is the odd-man-out in next-gen manned-spacecraft designs, being a derivative of NASA's cancelled [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HL-20_Personnel_Launch_System HL-20 Personnel Launch System]], which was a proposed "space-taxi" designed to launch vertically and land on a runway like the Space Shuttle, and carry up to 7 astronauts like the Shuttle, but without expending fuel for all that extra cargo-haul capability.
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