Even though interfaces, devices, and controls in movies and TV shows are often visible just long enough to drive the story forward, many have achieved pop culture immortality, ranging from Star Trek's communicator and the WarGames WOPR computer to the Terminator HUD, and of course, HAL. Nathan Shedroff and Christopher Noessel argue that we can draw practical design lessons from these interfaces.

Last year the pair published Make It So: Interface Design Lessons From Sci-Fi, and followed it up with a design blog, regularly cataloging sci-fi design concepts in everything from The Fifth Element and Metropolis to classics like Forbidden Planet and Barbarella. They took some time to talk about their background, what makes a great sci-fi interface, and the relationship between what we use everyday and the concepts we see on screen.