Monday, November 14, 2005

Star Trekkin'

USA Today recently reported on a study on teleportation commissioned by the US Air Force. The resulting report, entitled "Teleportation Physics Study" and produced by Warp Drive Metrics (Las Vegas, NV), explores the possibility of being able to "beam" matter from one point to another, just like the transporters employed on the Star Trek television series. The study cost the Air Force $25,000, and the report's author, Eric Davis of Warp Drive Metrics, recommends that a five-year, $7.5-million program to explore "psychic teleportation," reminiscent of the "experiments" conducted by alleged psychic and spoon-bender Uri Geller, whom the report actually references.

Now, Star Trek originally ran during the 1960s, and four decades later, many things considered to be nothing more than science fiction back then have become or are becoming reality. Take just a few examples: directed infrared countermeasures to protect not just military but civilian aircraft, the Airborne Laser to shoot down ballistic missiles, a non-lethal system that causes a burning sensation in its target(s), a directed-energy system to zap improvised explosive devices from afar, and many others -- including the aptly named PHaSR. Some of today's technologies even surpass those envisioned by the creators of Star Trek. Remember how Mr. Spock had to to stare down into that viewer at his station to view data? Now we can put that data right on the visor of a pilot's helmet. And let's not even get into all the meaningless flashing lights on the bridge of the Enterprise.

But teleportation? Come now. That's more than a little stretch (well, except for maybe everyone but former US Congressman James Traficant, who frequently shouted "Beam me up" on the floor of the House). I realize science is all about pushing boundaries, but the Air Force would've been better served by investing $25,000 into figuring out how Captain Kirk always managed to land the hot alien women.

Okay, so that may not help the US Air Force, but I've been curious for a really long time now.


At 1:35 PM, Blogger Eric Blair said...

C'mon. It was Kirk. Kirk could get some anywhere.

Ever wonder about STD's in the Star Trek Universe? "Oh no! I've got the Klingon Clap!"

At 9:39 AM, Blogger Michael Puttre said...

Yes, but all Bones had to do was wave that little salt shaker over the afflicted region, select the appropriate hypo, and all shoreleave-related problems were forgotten.


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