Films to Watch to Understand the World of Tech

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Humans have been developing technologies to make life easier and more enjoyable for generations. Our ingenuity has progressed at a faster rate than ever before because of technological advancements. As it shapes the world around us, technology refuses to stand still.

You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who hasn’t considered the endless possibilities of technology –  both the positive and negative aspects.

Films from the early twentieth century provided the groundwork for a slew of future, tech-fueled societies. While many IT specialists dismiss some of the interpretations, others appear to be true depictions of what humanity might expect as it progresses. With the Academy Awards just around the corner, we thought we’d look at some recent films with a strong tech theme. We’ll be concentrating on releases from the last two decades.

The Social Dilemma

The film “The Social Dilemma” is nothing like any anti-device sermon your mother has ever given you. The docudrama provides a platform for Silicon Valley ethicists, tech specialists, and so-called “computer philosophers” to discuss the dangers of social media and the tools they built.

The film explores how technology may impact elections, spawn conspiracies, and potentially cause widespread civil unrest. In some ways, the documentary forecasted this event by presenting a fictionalized adolescent being radicalized by the “extreme middle,” the film’s attempt to avoid taking a political stance, via online sites and social media platforms. Meanwhile, far-right websites like Parler, Gab, TheDonald, and MeWe plotted the Capital riot.


The Imitation Game

The film was released in 2014. It’s a drama film set in the past. The film was directed by Morten Tyldum and based on Andrew Hodges’ 1983 book Alan Turing: The Enigma, which was written by Graham Moore. The building of the world’s first computer is depicted in this film by Alan Turing and his colleagues. Towards the end of the film, Alan and his team devise a method for deciphering the German Enigma Code. It’s also one of the best science fiction films.


The Pirates of Silicon Valley

In 1999, The Pirates of Silicon Valley was released. The narrative of how Apple and Microsoft got so successful is told in this film. It describes how Steve Jobs and Bill Gates came up with the notion of building a universal personal computer. The film depicts their respective ideologies and methodologies for developing their top-of-the-line computers. For technophiles, the film is a must-see.

It was a drama film released in 1999 that was based on a true story. The film, which starred Noah Wyle as Steve Jobs and Anthony Michael Hall as Bill Gates, was directed by Martyn Burke. This film describes how “Apple” and “Microsoft,” two great software companies, came to be.

Finally, the film displays their computer development ideas and processes, as well as how they have developed to become one of the world’s leading software companies.



This is a film about “Theodore,” a man who is about to be separated from his wife and is very lonely. He purchases an AI-enabled operating system that is designed to adapt and evolve in the same way that humans do. For programmers interested in Artificial Intelligence and its future, this would be an excellent film.

It’s not often that a romantic comedy is built on technical advancements, but Her does just that. This Academy Award-winning film depicts a lonely man who forms a bond with a sophisticated AI virtual assistant who is voiced by a woman. As the AI develops, their friendship becomes sexual, but the guy is saddened when he learns that it has ties with hundreds of others.

Her was released at a time when virtual assistants like Siri and Alexa were just getting started, and it does an amazing job of examining the implications of AI as it grows more clever and lifelike. It digs into futuristic interfaces and the emotional anguish that can result from replacing something real with something artificial.


The Social Network

The film was released in 2010. It’s a true story drama film. Jesse Eisenberg plays Mark Zuckerberg, while Andrew Garfield plays Eduardo Saverin in David Fincher’s film. The true story of Facebook and its founder, Mark Zuckerberg, is told in this film. The film tells the story of Mark Zuckerberg’s effort to create “Facebook,” the world’s most popular and widely utilized social networking site. This clip will appeal to any programmer because it exhibits a strong commitment to achieving one’s goals.

This semi-historical drama follows Mark Zuckerberg’s founding of Facebook. The award-winning film explores the origin story of one of the greatest technological discoveries of our time, but its themes of friendship, envy, and betrayal become Shakespearian. It looks at the power of new technology and inventions, as well as the power of social media, which is still in its infancy, and how that power affects individuals. Watching this and then seeing where Facebook is now is a fascinating juxtaposition: from a dorm room website ranking college kids’ attractiveness to a marketing Goliath accused of influencing the 2016 U.S. Presidential election.

Ex Machina

The film was released in 2014. It’s a science fiction-inspired psychological thriller. The direction was handled by Alex Garland. On mankind’s desire for a better existence, the film displays a variety of technical applications, such as artificial intelligence. The plot revolves around a programmer who is asked by his CEO to create an intelligent humanoid robot. It highlights programmers’ problems in the software industry, as well as the societal ramifications if this technology is not handled properly.

This psychological thriller from 2015 follows a young programmer who is chosen to be the human component in a Turing test to determine a new artificial intelligence robot’s skills and consciousness. Although artificial intelligence isn’t a new concept in film, this Oscar-nominated film has established itself as one of the greatest. It effectively foreshadows the day in the not-too-distant future when robots are indistinguishable from humans, as well as the ethical problems that would follow.

Ex Machina raises ethical concerns about how far innovation should be pursued and whether or not it is moral to play God. As businesses race to build stronger AI for real-world applications, these are all concerns that must be addressed before the technology is released into the wild.


The Matrix 

This late-90s dystopian film comes dangerously close to fitting into the arbitrary time frame specified for this list, yet it wouldn’t be complete without it. Since its release, The Matrix has had a huge impact on pop culture, influencing innumerable other films, television episodes, video games, and novels. It implies that our world is a computer simulation designed to keep humanity submissive while sentient machines harvest our energy for survival.

When a human hacker realizes that the entire world is a deception, he sets out on a mission to overthrow the wicked AI masters. The sequels continue the war between machines and humans, and they will make you doubt all you’ve ever known. It seems strange, yet it’s possible that we’re currently immersed in a simulation.


Wall- E

You probably didn’t expect a Disney cartoon film to make our list, but WALL-E is jam-packed with technology and its repercussions. After humanity has been evacuated from the now-uninhabitable planet, a lone robot is left to clean up the globe.

He finds a sign of life with a visiting robot who’s looking for evidence that Earth can be saved. The two go on a journey to convince the humans – who are living in a space-based colony – to come back and fix their mess. We’re currently employing advanced robotics to explore, and the thought of using it to restore damaged Earth isn’t far off. WALL-E is a powerful condemnation of our modern consumerist and polluting lifestyles.

Written by Hermanto.