tue 20 may 2008 11:19:35 witte de withstraat
inventions i want
i freakin hate airplanes man. i'm convinced that heavier-than-air flight was a bad idea; and that if god had intended us to fly that way he would have given us doppler radar.
i want buoyant flight, big zeppelins with plenty of legroom. the thing my mom never explained to me is that people don't want zeppelins *because* they still think of the hindenburg when they think of zeppelins. by the way, do you know *why* the hindenburg was filled with explosive hydrogen instead of helium? sez kh -- it's because the US refused to sell helium to the germans. simple enough. and because of that, people still think that *zeppelins* are flammable, instead of thinking hydrogen is flammable. that's pesky.
of course it's stupid to fly around in a big can of hydrogen -- just as it is stupid to fly around in something whose wings and belly are filled with kerosene-based jet fuel. zeppelins are a good idea, i want them back. get there slower, but floating.
other inventions i want:
i want eyeglasses that can change their index of refraction electronically. you just dial in which setting you want, for driving, reading, watching tv, or using the computer.
also, i want mass-produced rolls of polymer that generate electricity when compressed, in a sort of piezoelectric action -- so you can cheaply carpet the built environment with the stuff, hook it up and start harvesting the mechanical energy of all these people walking around. you know what i mean? you step on it and it creates voltage. kind of an offshoot of what they are already doing with boots that charge your walkie-talkie.
the thing is, when we think about alternative/renewable sources of energy, the key is to cheaply mass produce something that helps capture energy that we are already making anyway, but which now goes to waste.
same thing with wind energy -- i want micro-wind energy, little microscopic things instead of giant windmills. nano-windmills embedded in polymer that can be spray painted. paint the wall, and when the breeze blows, it glows? who's to say that's impossible? just spend less money on weapons, security and oil companies, invest more in new materials science.
i promise, none of the technologies i'm talking about is any less feasible than, say, the flatscreen computer monitor i'm staring at right now. it's just a matter of getting your priorities straight. so tell all your inventor friends, i wanna see working prototypes by the first of january.