Sunday, February 21, 2010

S ! C ! I ! E ! N ! C ! E ! SCIENCE!! YAAAYYY!!

Ladies and gentlemen, once again the world of science has finally begun to catch up with one of the idle-moment outputs of my mighty brain. I remember some twenty-five years ago, living in a noxious, ugly flat in the Fairfield river-flatland area of Brisbane. I recall lying awake at night, sweating like five pigs in a one-man sauna as Brisbane worked its summery magic on my stifling, stuffy little bedroom. I remember opening the windows, in the vain hope of catching some sort of leaden, humid, corpse-breath breeze from the stinking, turgid river...

... and then I remember the whining. The terrible, shrill, vicious whining of the clouds of Brisbane summer mosquitoes charging into my bedroom, sharpening their goddam nano-tipped bloodsucking probes, and diving straight for my fucking earholes. FUCKERS! FUCKERS!

In the end, I recall I pulled the sheet all the way over myself, leaving only my nose exposed so I could breathe. And of course, periodically one of the little bastards would have a crack at spelunking, and I'd get mosquito up the nostril, whereupon there followed much sneezing and snorting and swearing, and very little sleep. Christ on a flaming jet-propelled crutch, I hated those little bastards.

In the quieter moments of that night, I dreamed up a device. I designed it in my head. I dwelled on it at length, envisioning exactly how it would work. It would have three lasers, at least. Little things. Not too powerful. But they would be controlled by a computer, and a couple of high-resolution, motion-sensitive cameras. And whenever the cameras picked up the movement of a mosquito, ALL THREE GODDAM LASERS WOULD HOME IN ON IT -- and there, in the crossfire, the intensity of the three or four beams at once would be enough to ANNIHILATE THE FILTHY LITTLE BASTARD IN A BLAST OF SUPERHEATED LASER-DRIVEN MOSQUITO VAPOUR!

It was a Fine Dream. It made me happy. And I took it to bed with me on many long, sticky, filthy, vermin-ridden nights in South-East Queensland... at least until I could afford a proper mosquito net.

And now, ladies and gentleman, it is with the greatest of delight that I can tell you that Science has finally understood my needs, and come out swinging. Check it out:

There's even mosquito-zapping footage up on the website. Oh, and the scientists in question reckon they might be able to bring the per-unit cost down to maybe $50.

It's just a shame there are bugger-all mosquitoes here where I live. But if they build one that will take out those awful little fucking flies that you bastards breed on the mainland and send across the Strait with the northerlies every summer, I will buy at least one for every room in the house. In the meantime: YAAAAAYYYY SCIENCE!


  1. Okay that is serious AWSM!

    About the same cost as a flyscreen really. Just one question, why didn't YOU develop it 25 years ago? Slackarse!

  2. V cool.

    I suspect they will also find a strong commercial market in the North US and most of Canada. I know I want one :)

  3. Mayhem: I know you're not really expecting a serious answer -- but the truth is, for the same reason I didn't develop the 'Internet Linked Fridge'. (I described that one to Natalie ten years before the first version of the Internet Fridge came out, when I was trying to explain to her how the Internet would change the world.)

    I write science fiction. I have ideas. A lot of them are cracked. I'm not really in a position to tell which ones are genuinely clever, and which ones are just loopy. I mean... mosquito lasers? Twenty-five years ago, CD players were cutting-edge tech. Lasers were EXPENSIVE. Cameras with enough resolution to follow a mosquito were at the very highest end of TV/video tech. And there wasn't an Apple II on the planet that could track a mosquito in real time and actually point a laser at it...

  4. I'd say I want one, but that'd be lying, more like I want a few. Have they done any research into the effect a decline in mosquito larvae may have?

  5. Oh. My. Fucking. God.

    What a joy it is to have lived long enough to have seen this.

  6. Recently Kim Stanley Robinson in an interview said
    "We are living in a science fiction novel we all collaborate on."

    Obviously he read about this wonderful development.

  7. That is so fucking cool. I used to shoot at the bastards with rubber bands. My bedroom ceiling was decorated with mossie carcasses. I never ever thought of a laser defence system. The fact that you did and it now exists is even cooler.

  8. I can't open it! :(

    I was told the other day that dog whistles work well too (A handy app on the Iphone I should add. I LOVE my Iphone! :) )

    I now live near the river Flinty, in Chelmer, and haven't seen a mossie yet

  9. THAT FKN ROCKS..aside from the pracyticle applications I want it on a remote control car, then programmed to take out FKN BULL ANTS, what about March flies, sand flies and European wasps as well, though that one might need at least two or three synced lasers. I gunna ring the fucking PONDO in the fkrs, DO they come cammoed as well

  10. MickH -- that comment does not fill me with confidence. It simply suggests that Brisbane water sources are no longer capable of supporting mosquito larvae.

    Not sure why you can't open it. I just clicked it, and it's definitely a live link.