Yes…we really mean THAT Captain Kirk…from the original Star Trek. In 1968 an episode called “The Ultimate Computer” aired. The M-5 system was designed to handle all ship functions without human assistance, not unlike the self-driving vehicles of today.

But, of course, something went awry. At first, Kirk resisted the machine (like many of us do when faced with new technology). But the real human error emerged when the M-5’s inventor, Dr. Richard Daystrom, refused to believe that the machine needed some fine-tuning before it was given total control. In fact, because the machine was mimicking some of the worst qualities of its human creator, it was a little too self-confident and a tad wacky and reactive.

Kirk saved the day, as he always did, and we all came away knowing that both man and machine can be flawed. Humans need to be careful when they make machines in their own images. Check out the Episode 53. We find the fact that people were telling stories like this one almost 50 years ago truly amazing. A self-driving Enterprise? No longer sci-fi!