Feeds

Ten... fantasy gadgets you wish you owned

Look to the future

Mobile application security vulnerability report

Sonic Screwdriver - Doctor Who

RH Numbers

Everyone needs a decent Swiss Army knife, unless, of course, you have a PhD in time travel and own one of these bad boys: a sonic screwdriver. We'd all like a tool that operates through the use of sound-waves, exerting physical force on objects remotely, unlocking almost any door and accessing every computer in the universe. Also, with the ability to perform highly delicate medical scans, the sonic screwdriver is the greatest Christmas gift ever for the hysteric hypercondriac.

Sonic Screwdriver - Doctor Who

First referred to during the 1968 serial Fury from the Deep, the screwdriver played a huge part in rescuing the Doctor from many sticky situations over the years. The device was deemed too helpful though and eventually found itself written out of the original Doctor Who series for "limiting the script". Perhaps writers for the new seasons hit a wall one day though and decided to bring it back, as they've featured the handheld tool in an array of episodes since 2005.

The idea of manipulating objects using ultrasonic sound waves isn't as far-fetched as you may believe. Using low forces of ultrasonic sound, scientists have been able to sort minuscule objects such as biological cells. Professor Drinkwater and his team at Bristol University have created a pair of "sonotweezers", which do exactly that. Drinkwater speculates that increasing the force could potentially get air moving fast enough to undo a screw.

Despite these claims, I wouldn't go adding a sonic screwdriver to your Santa list just yet.

Commercial possibility 30%
More info BBC

Timebooth - Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure

RH Numbers

Nobody, not even the sinister voice of Monty Burns, can lay claim to repeating the word "Excellent" in such memorable fashion. So as production for Bill & Ted 3 gets under way, we reminisce the phonebooth that took them back in time, in the hope it isn't replaced by smartphones in the next flick.

With so many time travel machines out there from Primer's box to Back to the Future's Delorean, choosing one was never going to be easy. Perhaps we should pay homage to HG Wells' Time Machine which lay the foundations back in 1895 for all to follow, however the appearance of a "time sled" in the 1960 film adaption put me off. It was also decided that despite the Tardis clearly being the superior of the two timebooths, we'd save the Doctor for another piece of fantasy kit (see above).

So yes, there's probably a more logical method for time travel than looking up a location in the Yellow Pages and dialling the corresponding number, but a time travelling phonebooth? C'mon, it's too cool and more to the point, super foolproof. After all, two chaps barely bright enough to read a phonebook used it well enough.

The real bogus side to all this is that time travel defies the laws of physics, so it's impossible. Plus George Carlin is no longer with us, so if Rufus appears in B&T3, it could be a CGI mock-up like Jeff Bridges in Tron: Legacy. And that would be most un-bodacious, dude.

Bill & Ted

Commercial possibility 0%
More info Bill & Ted 3

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Report: American tech firms charge Britons a thumping nationality tax
Without representation, too. Time for a Boston (Lincs) Macbook Party?
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Apple gets patent for WRIST-PUTER: iTime for a smartwatch
It does everything a smartwatch should do ... but Apple owns it
Microsoft takes on Chromebook with low-cost Windows laptops
Redmond's chief salesman: We're taking 'hard' decisions
For Lenovo US, 8-inch Windows tablets are DEAD – long live 8-inch Windows tablets
Reports it's killing off smaller slabs are greatly exaggerated
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.