Some technology of the past few decades science fiction is in the prototype and development phase now. I want to write about some of the lesser known stuff.
Tractor beams are used by big ships in space movies to grab smaller ships and pull them in. Here is a scene from Star Wars a New Hope, where the death star uses a tractor beam.
Now the tractor beams I have seen in real life are not as big. They are actually very small. Optical tweezers use the force from a focused laser beam to grab and move microscopic objects.
Next on my list is mind/body control. Using some type of device or magic to control something in speculative fiction is fairly common. Right now, the real mind/body control is not as scary or sinister.
A class demonstration called the Robo Roach attaches wires to a cockroaches nervous system. These wires gives someone remote control of the left/right movement of the Roach. Check it out HERE.
One weapon I learned about in my undergrad made me realize how much war would change over my lifetime. Robot sentry turrets use day and night cameras to identify human targets. To my knowledge they have not been deployed and are currently not allowed to decide when to pull the trigger. But they have been built and are ready to go. Here is a video.
That’s all I have time for now, but if you are interested some more topics to look up are exosuits, directed energy weapons (high power lasers), and cybernetic implants for eyes.