Hard Science Fiction inspired so much tech; kids read/watch the stuff, get inspired and say “someday…”; they learn everything they can, and their dreams at 11 years old they finally make into a reality, usually by the time they’re middle aged.
Star Trek isn’t usually considered hard sci-fi but, in a sense, it is, as he was into “what’s possible someday”; the generations of kids that craved it to be a reality, worked very hard to make it happen.
Just imagine what the future will bring. My dream of a completely foldable pocket computer that is as thin as paper, as cheap as paper, yet can unfold to cover a tabletop or be foldedup to fit in your hand; will be a reality someday. I won’t be the one to do it; but any idea thats possible, somebody out there is working on it… or will.