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Fictional gadgetry

I used to think that of all technologies, I most desired a Star Trek transporter, so that I could zip from place to place in seconds.  But later on I realised that actually, what I want in the transporter department is for everyone else to have one, so that all the grumpy people who are in a hurry could just zip off by transporter allowing me to enjoy my more leisurely journeying.

So, then I thought that of all technogies, I would like best to have a door that opened in several different places, like in Howl's Moving Castle, so that I could have a door that opened in Iceland, near Husavik, or on an uninhabited Scilly Isle, or in Istanbul (I liked Istanbul a lot, but I found it stressful as a place to spend much time.  It would be nice to be able to just pop there for a wander, a shop, coffee and pastries, then come home).

Then I thought that I would like to own a pleasant pocket universe, like the ones in several of Diana Wynne Jones's books,  and the ability to zap people into it, so that when afflicted by people who were grumpy, annoying, warlike, loud, or simply in the way, I could zap them safely away to a pocket universe where they would be quite safe but where nobody would have to deal with them.

Then it occurred to me that maybe I should simply go and live in the pocket universe myself.   An attractive idea, if a little lonely perhaps.  It does lack the charm of being able to point at someone and go 'zap' and have them painlessly vanish, which sometimes seems like it would be THE BEST THING ever.

But at the moment, I think if all the treasure of gadgets and devices of fiction were laid out in front of me, I would probably grab the Time Turner, out of the Harry Potter universe.  Because what could be better than just being able to have extra time, whenever you wanted it?  It would be a bit like that episode of Stargate where everyone gets trapped in a temporal loop but nobody can remember the looping apart from Teal'c and Jack O'Neill, and they learn to throw pots, and play golf.   Not that I have any desire to play golf, but you know what I mean.   You could just randomly have a nap, or spend two hours painting or gardening or going to the seaside! 


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
3rd Oct, 2014 03:04 (UTC)
Ooh yes! After you laid it out so logically, I had to agree with you. I could read a book, and then go back and work on writing my grant without feeling guilty!

Also, I found Istanbul (and Turkey overall) fairly stressful, so I'm with you there. I think one of my doors would open into the Swiss Alps.
4th Oct, 2014 21:05 (UTC)
Ooh, I didn't think of the Alps! I think you'd want a French window or a glass door, so you could admire the view even if not actually going through.

I think my big problem if I had a time turner would be using it constantly, so that everyone would think I was aging with amazing speed. :-D
4th Oct, 2014 21:14 (UTC)
Oh good point...I guess it doesn't stop the aging process. So you'd have to weigh how badly you wanted to get something done today, vs the amount of time it would shorten your life relative to everyone else. It kind of reminds me of the Ender's Game series, where they're always traveling at close to light speed knowing that by the time they arrive at their destinations, everyone where they started will have aged and died.
4th Oct, 2014 21:43 (UTC)
I am pretty sure that if I had a time turner, the temptation to be able to just walk away from whatever I was doing and do All The Forbidden Frivolous Things in the knowledge that there would always be time to do the boring stuff later... eventually... would trump all common sense. :-D

It might a bit like close to light speed travel, particularly if you were required to not meet yourself, so you'd have to keep going to places where previous versions of yourself were not...
6th Oct, 2014 01:44 (UTC)
So JK Rowling is right - only Hermione is conscientious enough to wield it responsibly!
5th Oct, 2014 19:35 (UTC)
Much as I would love to have doors that open into different lands, there is one *huge* disadvantage. Can you imagine how long it would take to go round opening doors until the cat has decided which world to grace with her august presence?

Edited at 2014-10-05 19:35 (UTC)
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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