You are allowed, through the miracles of science, to travel into the past for a span of no more than 24 hours. You are allowed to take with you ONE piece of current modern technology with which you may change the lives of ONE family that you can visit during your stay. Assuming that there are no long-term, widespread disastrous outcomes from this altering of the time line, when and where would you go, what piece of technology would you take with you to leave with them and why, and what do you think the experience would be like? You must choose a time of at least 1909 or earlier to return to. You must be able to physically carry or roll the item along with you. Be aware that it has to actually work with the other resources they have — IE: they won’t have the Internet, so email isn’t going to work. Etc.
There are a few things that have run through my mind when this topic came to my inbox late Sunday evening. I first thought of Back to the Future series….In Back to the Future I; Marty McFly went from the year 1985 to 1955. After he arrived in 1955 he stumbled into a relationship with his mother (who at the time was the same age as he was) he proceeded to mess up the soon to be relationship between his parents. He spent the rest of the movie repairing the damage that he had done. In Back to the Future II Marty McFly brought back with him to 1955 was a sports atlas that told him the winners and losers of all major sporting events for the next 50 years. This got me thinking…….Would I want to bring something like that back with me? Imagine the possibilities!!! I am not a gambler by any stretch of the imagination, I might buy a scratch card once or twice a month at most, but I might start if I had a guarantee of success!!
Then I started to think about the outcome of the movie — If you saw it then you would know that things did not work out so well because the atlas got into the wrong hands.
So back to the drawing board…..I began to think again…..if I was to help one family would it be selfish to help my own family? Would I want to try and help them out so that generation, after generation would not have to worry about the future anymore?
I then had to do some research to find out what was happening in the early 1900’s to see how we could take advantage of the situation.
The question posed before us is what piece of modern technology would I want to take back that would change the lives of one family.
For me modern technology is something that enhances our lives. Modern technology is not to be prohibitive but enhanced. This past April when my iphone was fried because of water being dumped on it and I felt lost. I used my iphone everyday keeping track of my calendar, to do list, contacts, budget, just to name a few. After my iphone was destroyed I felt lost, I did not have a sufficent replacement for my iphone and many things slipped between the cracks because I was not “on top” of things.
With all of that in mind, I suppose I have two answers to the question posed before us……the first is that I would bring back one thing that I would know inside and out (ie a fan, washer and dryer, modern telephone, ipod, pencil sharpener, digital camera, battery charger, tape, cd ect). I would choose one of the items and teach a family member one of these items and let them “invent” the items and keep the patten on it (granted that I could convince a distant relative that I was from the future and that I was related to him/her, but that is just details). Then (in theory) my family would be set up for life which would benefit us and in turn, ME!
The other option would be to break the “rules” of this question. I was really thinking about it and decided that if I could go back in time I would bring with me one thing — it would be a digital camera with lots of extra batteries and SD cards. I would spend 24 hours going back to February 4th 1930 – the day my father was born. I would spend 24 hours in the hospital taking pictures (in ninja like fashion) of my father and his biological parents. See my father was adopted and we really don’t have pictures of his parents. I would spend the 24 hours talking with his parents (maybe disguised as the hospital priest) and I would try and get as much information as possible so we can know more about where he came from and our family history.