National Reading Movement

4 Sci-Fi Gadgets We Wished Were Real

Yes, we know. Sci-fi technology can be really dangerous. But what if it’s also really cool? Here are four gadgets we wished were real… even if they could possibly destroy of all humanity. 😉


The Babel Fish from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Our hapless protagonist Arthur Dent finds himself whisked away on the adventure of his lifetime across the galaxy. To survive , he has to understand everyone around him.

Thankfully, there’s the Babel Fish.



It’s a small, yellow, leech-like fish. Insert one into your ear and you can instantly understand any language.

How does it work? According to author Douglas Adam, the Babel fish feeds on brainwaves from those around you and absorbs the signals from the speech centres of the brain. The fish then excretes into the mind of the carrier a telepathic matrix of those speech signals.

It sounds pretty gross, but we’d bet it’s worth it! Read more about the Babel fish here.


Tesseract from A Wrinkle In Time

In A Wrinkle In Time, the Murray family have a big problem: Mr Murray has mysteriously disappeared while working on a top secret project on space travel in the fifth dimension.

The family doesn’t know where to look for him, until they’re visited by an eccentric neighbour who claims that there is something called the tesseract.



And no, engineers. It’s not your basic cubic prism, or even the tesseract in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.



The tesseract in A Wrinkle In Time acts like a wormhole, allowing you to hop around space, bending the space-time continuum. You could go anywhere in the galaxy, and you wouldn’t have to spend years travelling!

If you’ve always wanted to explore space, here’s your ticket!


Air-Taxis from The Foundation Series

It was in this series that author Isaac Asimov introduced the concept of psychohistory. It’s a fictional science that combines history, sociology and mathematical statistics to make predictions of the future.

And while that is all very interesting, one thing in the series really caught our eye air-taxis.



It is a flying taxi that can go at 350 kilometres per hour. And did we mention that it comes with autonomous features? It is computerised so that the computer can override the driver at any moment to prevent any accidents.



And the best part? It may actually be a reality soon! Uber has revealed its plans for a flying taxi service by 2023, and closer to home, the Transport Ministry is in talks to try flying taxis out.

Goodbye traffic jams!

Read the first book here.


The Nursery from The Veldt

Before you roll your eyes at what we picked, let’s just say that this children’s nursery is no ordinary one.

It is a virtual reality room, which materialises any landscape and environment you imagine, and it’s so alluring that it is possible to be reliant on it, as the children in The Veldt do. They depend on the nursery to express their emotions, and beg their parents to allow one last visit before they move to the countryside.



Of course, the story is a warning against being overly reliant on technology and the repercussions of using technology to replace relationships, but we cannot deny that having a room that could bring out your deepest desires is pretty appealing, as long as you proceed with caution.