By Tkingdoll (aka Teek)Ã‚Â
Yay! The Mind-Control Chip is Here!Ã‚Â
IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been waiting for this for years, having only just reconciled myself to the fact that I will probably not see meal-in-a-pill and personal jetpacks in my lifetime. Damn you, vintage B movies, damn you to hell! At least I can wear a jumpsuit any time I like. Fashionable, and practical too (until you need to pee). Mmm sensual velour.Ã‚Â
I love it when Sci-fi becomes reality. Imagine being able to turn on your TV just by thinking about it. ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s even better than the kid in X-Men 2 who changes channel by blinking. But wait! What about the potential impact on evil villainous masterminds, hell bent on controlling the world with their army of mind-controlled zombie people? Or that ship in Enterprise controlled from the Romulan HQ by an Aenar with a helmet, that was bad, right? This mind-control chip has all sorts of scary applications if it falls into the hands of the Martians, or the Russians perhaps.Ã‚Â
This reminds me of a book I used to love as a kid, called A Rag, A Bone, and a Hank of Hair, by Nicholas Fisk. I loved it because it scared me, and because it was one of the first books I ever read that had a proper twist that I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t see coming. The book is sadly out of print, so I shall sketch the plot for you here, although itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s from memory so apologies to the author if I get any of it wrong.
The story is told from the perspective of a young boy in a future utopia. He is asked to take part in an experiment in which a team of scientists have created a set of androids. The androids are kept in a Truman Show-esque fake environment, the kitchen of a London townhouse during the Blitz. Fake memories have been implanted into theÃ‚Â androids, whoÃ‚Â respond to a series of manufactured events, like bombings and rationing. The boy has to interact with them, pretending he is part of the family, and report back on his feelings. At dusk he says a code word and the androids go to sleep, whereupon he goes home and gets on with his regular life of parents, schoolwork and friends.
I seem to recall the rationale behind the experiment was to see how the artificial minds responded to the stress of the war scenario and how they interacted and bonded with each other.
Now, I canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t quite recall why, but for some reason the scientists are forced to abandon the experiment and they do this by blowing up the fake room and the androids with it.
And the twist? Ah, but that wouldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t be fair now, would it? YouÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll just have to wait until the mind-control chip is commercially available and remote control me to tell you ;o)Ã‚Â