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Fenris
05-16-2014, 10:34 PM
(I am borrowing a page from Cotton and doing some Cross-Dimensional Thread Necromancy. This was originally posted about four years ago, with some changes.)

The Science Fiction Genie appears to you and offers you one (1) of the following sf plot devices to keep. Along with a working prototype, you also get complete blueprints and a crackerjack team of lawyers to assure that your patent application (if you make one) gets by without any problems, thefts, or sneaky corporate subversions.

All models are relatively cheap to build and can be mass-produced with modern industrial processes. So, which one of these would you pick to gift/sell/impose upon the world?

(Or keep for yourself, I guess. In some of these cases that would definitely be a good idea.)


1) The Time Machine. The classic H.G. Wells model; forward and back as far as you want. Make sure you pull the right lever!

2) FTL Drive. Up to 55 lightyears per hour.

3) Food Replicators. They process almost anything (including dirt) and make it into nutritious soup. They're solar-powered and cheap enough for the world's aid agencies to supply the entire third world pretty easily.

4) Artificial Intelligence. This sentient software is actually a lot smarter than we are. It seems to like us, though. So far. (You can get it in Windows or Mac!)

5) Supernova Bomb. It blows up the sun. Yes, we all die.

6) Teleporter. As in The Fly, entry and exit portals are required. Check for insects in pod before using!

7) Cybernetic Brain Implants. You can browse the internet in your head, and make your thinking clearer, faster, and more precise. You can also adjust your mood with slider bars, though this may get complicated.

8) Shrink Ray. It makes things smaller; as small as you want, though shrinking slows down as things become microscopic. Another setting restores objects and people to their original size. Aside from the Restoration Ray, the shrink effect is permanent.

9) Personality Upload Scanner. It reads and records your entire brain, and then translates that into a realistic computer simulation of your personality. Your virtual self will know everything you do, and will sincerely believe that it's you. (In a sense, after all, it is.) You don't necessarily want it running at the same time as you; but if you die, it's a radical kind of life insurance.

10) Dimensional Transporter. Just like in Sliders, but with much better navigation control. The user-friendly interface allows you to select specific historical events as branching points (i.e., "A world where the South won the Civil War") or general conditions ("A world where there is no racism.") No guarantees about your reception there!



We may make the world better or worse, but at least we're going to make it stranger!

Mari
05-16-2014, 10:50 PM
I don't know what the FTL drive is. But I am confident I would love to have the time machine! Just to visit different times, and perhaps make enough money to not work ;)

Pl Rua
05-16-2014, 10:59 PM
The angel munky on my shoulder is saying Food Replicators.
The devil munky on my shoulder is saying Shrink Gun.

In the voice of Stephen Colbert as Myron Reducto.
Seriously.
He won't quit.

He really IS evil.

But in the end, I think I'd end up with the dimensional transporter. Mainly so I could set it for stuff like, "Take me to the world where George Lucas had an all-Japanese cast for Star Wars! Take me to the world where there was a Marvel Comics crossover between Master of Kung Fu and Tomb of Dracula!"

ExcelsiorPrime
05-16-2014, 11:14 PM
Dimensional Transporter. So I could travel to the Alternate reality Marvel Universe. Then i would go to the timeline in which Abraham Lincoln was/is a Vampire Hunter.

coveredinbees
05-16-2014, 11:15 PM
I don't know what the FTL drive is. But I am confident I would love to have the time machine! Just to visit different times, and perhaps make enough money to not work ;)
Faster than light
They use it to get around in Battlestar. Eureka has one, too.

Paradox
05-17-2014, 12:03 AM
Artificial Intelligence. To make up for the lack of natural intelligence around. :)

The Watcher
05-17-2014, 01:44 AM
I choose the Dimensional Transporter and then use it to visit the timelines where I chose to receive a different sf plot device from the Science Fiction Genie. I make a deal with each of my counterparts to get copies of blueprints of all the other devices except the Dimensional Transporter in exchange for blueprints of the device he chose. It's a mutually beneficial deal and I'm a nice guy so it's a sure thing that my counterparts will agree.

I'll go to the me that has the Time Machine first to make things easier on me logistically. After he agrees to the deal his future self could travel back in time to give me copies of the blueprints to all the other devices so I won't have to go back and forth a lot between my different selves but just make one stop in each timeline to make a trade (well, twice for Time Machine me since I've got to go back and give him copies so the future him can go back in time to give me copies of his copies).

Now I've got blueprints and eventually working prototypes of every device. :cool::D

I think I will patent the Food Replicator and Teleporter and keep the rest in reserve for myself. I'll sell the Food Replicators to aid agencies for a cheap price that makes me a small profit and make the majority of my money running a teleporter network to ship both people and goods. I might release FTL later after the world has adjusted to the changes wrought by the first two inventions.

t hedge coke
05-17-2014, 01:51 AM
All I saw was "food" and my decision was made.

I mean, to be fair, it's probably what I'd use a starship or time machine for, anyway. To boldly find new sandwiches.

Paradox
05-17-2014, 01:58 AM
And with the Time Travel device, maybe someone would make you an Earl! :)

Dispenser Of Truth
05-17-2014, 02:28 PM
Absolutely the replicator, even if it's just limited to food. The world kinda sorta desperately needs that.

The MunchKING
05-17-2014, 02:39 PM
AI could b e pretty awesome. Especially if it's loyal to me. :p

BeastieRunner
05-17-2014, 03:31 PM
The non-selfish version of me won out with the replicator ... we need that. The selfish me was trying to justify the time machine.

The Darknight Detective
05-17-2014, 04:29 PM
I don't know what the FTL drive is. But I am confident I would love to have the time machine! Just to visit different times, and perhaps make enough money to not work ;)

It's the time machine for me, too.

The MunchKING
05-17-2014, 04:46 PM
It's the time machine for me, too.

Be careful not to catch any weird diseases in the past or future.

The Darknight Detective
05-17-2014, 04:50 PM
Be careful not to catch any weird diseases in the past or future.

Heh. That would be a big concern. Almost as much altering the timeline and erasing yourself out of existence. :)

The MunchKING
05-17-2014, 05:07 PM
Heh. That would be a big concern. Almost as much altering the timeline and erasing yourself out of existence. :)

Yeah I wonder how "Paradox free" your time machine is...

Lady Warp Spasm
05-17-2014, 05:31 PM
Teleporter pod for me > it would be nice to get wherever I need to go instantly.

SuperCooper
05-17-2014, 06:26 PM
Food replicator, though I'm curious as to what kind of soup we're talking here?

Jadis
05-18-2014, 12:10 AM
It's a tug of war between the Time Machine and Dimensional Transporter for me.

My emotional side would want to go back and see people I love but lost. But my curious side would want to explore altered realities and maybe even find one more to my liking. Going forward in the time machine and gaining immortality (assuming I can end it if I wish) or an extended life could be appealing, if a mite scary. But I'd first drawn more to the past and would worry about messing something up. I guess the transporter would be the smarter pick since I can custom request conditions.

Fenris
05-18-2014, 02:04 AM
Food replicator, though I'm curious as to what kind of soup we're talking here?

It's transmuting it out of dirt, so it shouldn't be limited. I guess it probably has a little keyboard on the side where you can type in whatever variety you want.


What do you mean, it all tastes like chicken!

Fenris
05-18-2014, 02:05 AM
Yeah I wonder how "Paradox free" your time machine is...

Not at all! Half the fun of time travel is the paradoxes. :)



Well, half the fun of reading about it, anyway.

Reverse Happy
05-18-2014, 02:46 AM
I choose the Dimensional Transporter and then use it to visit the timelines where I chose to receive a different sf plot device from the Science Fiction Genie. I make a deal with each of my counterparts to get copies of blueprints of all the other devices except the Dimensional Transporter in exchange for blueprints of the device he chose. It's a mutually beneficial deal and I'm a nice guy so it's a sure thing that my counterparts will agree.

I'll go to the me that has the Time Machine first to make things easier on me logistically. After he agrees to the deal his future self could travel back in time to give me copies of the blueprints to all the other devices so I won't have to go back and forth a lot between my different selves but just make one stop in each timeline to make a trade (well, twice for Time Machine me since I've got to go back and give him copies so the future him can go back in time to give me copies of his copies).

Now I've got blueprints and eventually working prototypes of every device. :cool::D

I think I will patent the Food Replicator and Teleporter and keep the rest in reserve for myself. I'll sell the Food Replicators to aid agencies for a cheap price that makes me a small profit and make the majority of my money running a teleporter network to ship both people and goods. I might release FTL later after the world has adjusted to the changes wrought by the first two inventions.
Niiice.

This is what I love best about scenario threads: the hunt for loopholes :D

SuperCooper
05-18-2014, 05:46 AM
It's transmuting it out of dirt, so it shouldn't be limited. I guess it probably has a little keyboard on the side where you can type in whatever variety you want.


What do you mean, it all tastes like chicken!

Works for me!

Alphabet soup for all!

sonofspam1972
05-18-2014, 12:48 PM
Brain implants- i would like to be smarter.

Professor Moriarty
05-18-2014, 01:15 PM
time machine.

first place I'd go would be The Monterey Pop Festival. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monterey_Pop_Festival)

Wedge Antilles
05-18-2014, 05:58 PM
Time machine for me please.

Heeding those very valid concerns about diseases in the future, I'll restrict myself to travels pre-2014, thank you.

The MunchKING
05-18-2014, 06:19 PM
Time machine for me please.

Heeding those very valid concerns about diseases in the future, I'll restrict myself to travels pre-2014, thank you.


Well don't forget past diseases, we've mostly eliminated by now, so your immune system isn't expecting to fight.

Wedge Antilles
05-18-2014, 06:31 PM
Well don't forget past diseases, we've mostly eliminated by now, so your immune system isn't expecting to fight.

Thanks for looking out for me MunchKING!

I would take my chances that I would survive a trip back to home-era to get treated should I fall victim to early disease.

The MunchKING
05-18-2014, 06:40 PM
Thanks for looking out for me MunchKING!

I would take my chances that I would survive a trip back to home-era to get treated should I fall victim to early disease.

*shrug*

Fair enough. It's your life to lose. :D

Cotton
05-18-2014, 11:38 PM
(I am borrowing a page from Cotton and doing some Cross-Dimensional Thread Necromancy. This was originally posted about four years ago, with some changes.)

The Science Fiction Genie appears to you and offers you one (1) of the following sf plot devices to keep. Along with a working prototype, you also get complete blueprints and a crackerjack team of lawyers to assure that your patent application (if you make one) gets by without any problems, thefts, or sneaky corporate subversions.

All models are relatively cheap to build and can be mass-produced with modern industrial processes. So, which one of these would you pick to gift/sell/impose upon the world?

(Or keep for yourself, I guess. In some of these cases that would definitely be a good idea.)


You're welcome, and by the way I hate you most of all Fenris.

I would like to have a write in: realistic sex robots.

Edit: I don't really hate you.

Cotton
05-18-2014, 11:44 PM
Not at all! Half the fun of time travel is the paradoxes. :)



Well, half the fun of reading about it, anyway.

I think that the grandfather paradox is actually a very simple answer, because of entropy, it would just create an alternate universe where you weren't born because you killed your grandfather in the past, you won't dissappear, you just won't be able to get back to your universe ever again. Not even if you try and go back in time to stop yourself from killing your grandfather, because that would just create another new universe where your grandfather is alive, but since things are slightly different, you still wouldn't have been born.

Of course I base this off of nothing.

Enigmatic Undead
05-19-2014, 12:36 AM
Food Replicator seems like it would benefit the world the most by possibly ending poverty as we know it.

Teleporter Pods would also be massively beneficial. Ideally it could end our dependency on fossil fuels.

For personal use I would choose the time machine but not to change history or anything. I'm more interested in hanging out with interesting people. Drink with Hemingway or Hunter S. Thompson, do coke with Belushi, watch Hendrix live at Woodstock or see The Beatles play Madison Square Garden. Etc, etc.


time machine.

first place I'd go would be The Monterey Pop Festival. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monterey_Pop_Festival)

Yes. This.


Be careful not to catch any weird diseases in the past or future.

I'm more concerned with the lack of indoor plumbing.

Fenris
05-19-2014, 01:49 AM
You're welcome, and by the way I hate you most of all Fenris.

RUA-hahaha! So be it! We shall be archnemeses, Accursed Cotton, and our titanic conflict shall shake this board unto its VERY FOUNDA-



Edit: I don't really hate you.

Oh.

Well, never mind, then. [/Dr. Orpheus voice]



I would like to have a write in: realistic sex robots.

I was worried that if I included that, no one would have picked anything else.



But Fembots are admittedly classic!

Fenris
05-19-2014, 02:00 AM
I think that the grandfather paradox is actually a very simple answer, because of entropy, it would just create an alternate universe where you weren't born because you killed your grandfather in the past, you won't dissappear, you just won't be able to get back to your universe ever again. Not even if you try and go back in time to stop yourself from killing your grandfather, because that would just create another new universe where your grandfather is alive, but since things are slightly different, you still wouldn't have been born.

Does this imply that any trip to the past would create a new universe, since you're bound to make tiny changes just by being there?

But I suppose if the changes were tiny enough, you'd simply never notice them, and assume it was the same universe you came from.



Of course I base this off of nothing.

I'd hate to think that a thread like this wasn't sourced properly!


I suppose all this would be in the Time Machine's manual.

Cotton
05-19-2014, 02:10 AM
RUA-hahaha! So be it! We shall be archnemeses, Accursed Cotton, and our titanic conflict shall shake this board unto its VERY FOUNDA-

So be it, from this day forward you are my number one enemy!!!



Oh.

Well, never mind, then. [/Dr. Orpheus voice]

Nope, too late, it's F*cking on!!! You can't disrespect me like here at CBR and expect me not to retaliate or else another poster would see that I'm getting soft and shank me in the showers.



I was worried that if I included that, no one would have picked anything else.


You are sooooo right about that. But it would've been funny.

Cotton
05-19-2014, 02:26 AM
Does this imply that any trip to the past would create a new universe, since you're bound to make tiny changes just by being there?

But I suppose if the changes were tiny enough, you'd simply never notice them, and assume it was the same universe you came from.



Nope, just by being there and coming into contact with your grandfather, it would change the chances of the factors coming into play with the same exact sperm that would conceive you. I mean there are hundreds of millions (if not a billion) sperm going for one egg(or maybe two if it's fraternal twins), and if you think about it, it would drastically affect that outcome if anything changed at all. And as I have said before, I base this off of nothing, I don't know the science behind it and I'm not going to pretend to, but I'm sure the science is in there somewhere.



I'd hate to think that a thread like this wasn't sourced properly!


I suppose all this would be in the Time Machine's manual.

That is strike two Fenris, not sourcing your thread properly, that is strike two.....

Fenris
05-19-2014, 02:29 AM
So be it, from this day forward you are my number one enemy!!!

See, that's important. There's nothing more humiliating than being someone's third- or fourth-place archnemesis.



Nope, too late, it's F*cking on!!! You can't disrespect me like here at CBR and expect me not to retaliate or else another poster would see that I'm getting soft and shank me in the showers.

And once you have an archnemesis, the most embarrassing thing is for your enemy to be killed by some total stranger in a disturbing prison scene.
That just won't do.



You are sooooo right about that. But it would've been funny.

It's all fun and games until the fembots take over the world.



Sadly, it wouldn't be that hard!!

Cotton
05-19-2014, 02:40 AM
See, that's important. There's nothing more humiliating than being someone's third- or fourth-place archnemesis.




Well that's why you should be honored to be bumped up to my number one enemy from my list of at least a hundred (if not millions) of enemies.




And once you have an archnemesis, the most embarrassing thing is for your enemy to be killed by some total stranger in a disturbing prison scene.
That just won't do.

It's shank or be shank isn't it? It's in the rules, look it up. Boy would my face be red if I've misread that.



It's all fun and games until the fembots take over the world.


That is a risk I am willing to take. Don't thank me, that's just how I roll!

Fenris
05-19-2014, 02:40 AM
Nope, just by being there and coming into contact with your grandfather, it would change the chances of the factors coming into play with the same exact sperm that would conceive you. I mean there are hundreds of millions (if not a billion) sperm going for one egg(or maybe two if it's fraternal twins), and if you think about it, it would drastically affect that outcome if anything changed at all. And as I have said before, I base this off of nothing, I don't know the science behind it and I'm not going to pretend to, but I'm sure the science is in there somewhere.

Right. But:
1) So long as the time-travel genie still appeared to retcon-you (Retcotton?), and "you" also picked time travel, then your alternate would have taken off in the time machine just as you did. So from the world's perspective, he left and you came back; and he'll never return, because his time-trip is making changes and locking him out of this universe just as you're locked out of your original one.

2) If the change in genetics didn't actually make you look different, then people may never realize that you've changed in subtle genetic ways; or if they do notice changes in your attitude or behavior, "he's a completely different person from a parallel timeline" probably isn't going to be their first theory.




That is strike two Fenris, not sourcing your thread properly, that is strike two.....

Grrrr.


The umpire is clearly biased!

Cotton
05-19-2014, 02:47 AM
Right. But:
1) So long as the time-travel genie still appeared to retcon-you (Retcotton?), and "you" also picked time travel, then your alternate would have taken off in the time machine just as you did. So from the world's perspective, he left and you came back; and he'll never return, because his time-trip is making changes and locking him out of this universe just as you're locked out of your original one.

2) If the change in genetics didn't actually make you look different, then people may never realize that you've changed in subtle genetic ways; or if they do notice changes in your attitude or behavior, "he's a completely different person from a parallel timeline" probably isn't going to be their first theory.



Yeah, but there would be another version of you existing at the same time as you, they'll probably bear your name (if they are the same gender as you) but you'll be genetically different like how your brothers or sisters are slightly genetically different from you.




Grrrr.


Grrrrreat!

Fenris
05-19-2014, 02:55 AM
Well that's why you should be honored to be bumped up to my number one enemy from my list of at least a hundred (if not millions) of enemies.

This isn't going to be like that Nigerian email thing, is it? Because he said he'd picked me out as a special friend, and I still haven't gotten my twelve million dollars.



Cotton messes up the quote function- strike two!
And once you have an archnemesis, the most embarrassing thing is for your enemy to be killed by some total stranger in a disturbing prison scene.
That just won't do.

It's shank or be shank isn't it? It's in the rules, look it up. Boy would my face be red if I've misread that.

Now I have a very different idea of how I got to the top of your enemies list so quickly.



That is a risk I am willing to take. Don't thank me, that's just how I roll!

You're a Harry Mudd for our time, Cotton.



But I'm showing my age!

Cotton
05-19-2014, 03:51 AM
This isn't going to be like that Nigerian email thing, is it? Because he said he'd picked me out as a special friend, and I still haven't gotten my twelve million dollars.



If the 12 million dollars doesn't show up within the next 6 months, keep waiting. And what people overlook is that Nigeria is not a principality, like the Nigerian Prince always claims.



Now I have a very different idea of how I got to the top of your enemies list so quickly.

You're a Harry Mudd for our time, Cotton.



But I'm showing my age!

I did not get that Star Trek reference.

Until I looked up who Harry Mudd is on wikipedia. That was the only reason how I know that's a Star Trek reference.

And to that I say thank you? I guess?

The MunchKING
05-19-2014, 05:56 AM
If the 12 million dollars doesn't show up within the next 6 months, keep waiting. And what people overlook is that Nigeria is not a principality, like the Nigerian Prince always claims.


That's actually the point! In the original version he claims to have been deposed when the country switched to a republic, and that's why he now needs to get out of the country with all his money.

Michael P
05-19-2014, 07:13 AM
2) FTL Drive. Up to 55 lightyears per hour.

I can't fly 55!

But seriously, I'll take the food replicator.

Cotton
05-19-2014, 04:05 PM
2) FTL Drive. Up to 55 lightyears per hour.

So even in our wildest imagination, and in this crazy hypothetical situation where we pick inventions that border on fantasy, the fastest we can go is 55 light years an hour? Only 55 light years an hour; What is this the Stone Ages?