Movies that Don't tell the Tech Truth

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I don’t mind when a movie has something “Tech” in it, as long as it’s realistic, or even remotely so. There have been times in movies, though, where you just have to hang your head as a Geek and wonder what Hollywood was thinking.

Bwana mentioned being bothered by the movie Jurassic Park, during the scene where the girl uses a Unix system. After this video was posted, I received a follow up email to explain that scene. The file system you saw on screen in that scene is called “3d navigator” and was developed by Silicon Graphics (SGI) for their version of unix. You can see a Screenshot here.

SC_Thor has to cringe when watching Swordfish. Build a virus out of legos? What are you talking about? Ohhh. I feel the need to go play with something the guys can’t see while they continue talking!

Wirelesspacket doesn’t mind Hackers so much. At least it’s realistic in the sense it COULD be that way in the future. However, he feels that the movie Takedown was more realistic.

Clear and Present Danger just wasn’t right at all. There’s a part where someone is trying to delete files on a computer from the Command Line, and the directory is longer than it should be. How hard is C:??

And now, for my invention! Look… I built my own virus out of Legos! Now all I need to do is send it to the Mother Ship. I’m such a genius.

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41 thoughts on “Movies that Don't tell the Tech Truth”

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  4. Course you could say that for many actors in roles they play, but that really doesn’t matter. I mean, the subject was more about movies where they portray things that “don’t tell tech truth.” Well FSN is tech real, and it ran on SGI’s own IRIX OS, which is based on UNIX System V. Apparently you can even get a FSN like program for Linux called FSV.

  5. Antitrust.

    If I remember correctly, In the intro, when all those starting credits roll, they show in the background of actor names “flying” into view some HTML code 🙂

  6. These people have just realised that what you see in movies is not exactly how it is in real life…. good on them.

    Ha ha ha! Lego virus!

  7. One other glarnig tech faux pax was in the movie Independence Day – How is that we were able to link up with the alien space ship using an Apple computer?
    Were the aliens also using the MacOS?
    If that was the case, we need to have a conversation with one Steve Jobs soon….

  8. I saw “Man of the Year” (with Robin Williams) in the theaters and while it was a good treatise (or foreshadowing) about humorous political pundits a la Colbert running for office AND of the fallibility of electronic voting machines, the cause of the bug which the affects the machines is just silly beyond compare.

    It winds up giving the candidate with the first-alphabetically double letter combination in their last name something like triple the actual votes. How the hell would someone program anything like that into a voting machine in the first place?

  9. @Jesse Slicer,

    Princeton did something vaguely similar to that in a study. Check YouTube.

    Oh, lols lego virus. I thought you were actually gonna program a lego virus. Oh well, mayb nxt time

  10. How the hell would someone program anything like that into a voting machine in the first place?

    Exactly! This part ruined my impression of “Man of the Year”, even though I love Robin Williams as an actor and a stand up comedian… Cute movie.. If you rewind to see only Robin’s antics it becomes watchable more than once 🙂

  11. the independence day virus wasnt made on the mac, it was just launched on the mac, but they had a database of 40 years in the making about them aliens.

  12. The latest one I watched is Bourne Supremacy. One scene shows Bourne copying files off the laptop, but the screen shows Norton Anti-Virus is scanning the files 😀

  13. Transformers..

    The scene in the Pentagon where she’s got the headphones on and “hears” the robot hacking into the defense network on airforce one…

  14. the moive that pissed me off was die hard 4 i dont know that much about hacking but i know you cant hack into the street lights and change a 4 way intersection so that all lights are green or hack into every t.v channel and display the same thing if any that as seen that movie they would know what im talking about. i would like to see what other people tought about all the hacking that was going on in that moive

  15. how about in anti-trust when the whole intro of the movie has scrolling html in the background.. i found that quite hilarious when the movie had absolutely nothing to do with html

  16. My main complaint was the “killer video game” movie, Stay Alive. Seriously the whole idea of a game being designed on a real place, that was fine. The idea that dieing in a 3D game would kill you in real life, that was just to much.

    I agree with you Chris.

  17. Movies sometimes disappoint us. I wonder if they don’t just have that much time to make a research on what movie they are making.
    That kind of things does not only happens in tech movies. It also happen in other genres. Some way or the other they make assumptions that are totally wrong or out of logic. Like the movie Final Destination in the scene where a man got hanged in the shower by a wire. He tried to stand up, grip the side of the shower, reach a scissor all to no avail. What? Why try all of those when he could just untie the wire?
    It would be alright if they meant those mistakes as a joke.But if it was meant it to portray reality, it only breaks credibility.
    I hope they would be more careful next time. The viewers aren’t that easy to fool.

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