The Secret Science of Superheroes
CHAPTER 12: Big Data, Big Heroes and Bad Computers
Published:01 Aug 2017
Special Collection: RSC Popular Science eBook CollectionProduct Type: Popular Science
Rob Miles, 2017. "Big Data, Big Heroes and Bad Computers", The Secret Science of Superheroes, Mark Lorch, Andy Miah
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Batman is definitely an early adopter. Well before the PC was invented in the 1960s, Batman’s cave housed his very own Bat-computer complete with Bat-input slot (scanner and character recognition software), criminal Bat-locator (GPS tracker) and Bat-slides (screen). Since then, computers have been a big part of superhero storylines and data-processing devices have served good and evil in about equal measure. The Bat-computer and its add-ons seem to have been pretty good predictors of some of the technology that we take for granted now, but how close to real life are the descriptions of computer use in superhero stories generally? Can we look back on these stories and discover insights into what have become some of the biggest challenges and opportunities arising from the rise of supercomputers?