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The hovercraft will be 50 years old next year. Like supersonic, interplanetary and deep sea travel, the demise of the world’s largest hovercraft the SR-N4, joined Concorde, the Saturn V and the Trieste as examples of technological retreat.The SR-N4, which was operated by two companies, for many years, to transport people across the English Channel, could carry over 30 vehicles and 250 people. What made these hovercraft particularly unusual is that they represented an example of a design where the civilian versions were more extraordinary than those used by the military, which are still smaller, even today.

18 hovercraft designs

Manhattan is an antique modern city, dark, decaying, malevolent and at the same time wonderful. The most recent screen versions of Batman have captured this dark feel perfectly. Here are our picks for the buildings and elements of Manhattan that make up the real Gotham city.

real gotham city

Here are a range of videos of some bizarre automated drawing machines, from an instrument that draws mushroom clouds from the dust from nuclear test sites, a large industrial robot used to automatically draw what it sees and a variety of increasingly odd contraptions.

bizarre drawing contraption videos

Some people take paintball very seriously, and the boundary between harmless fun, unintentional irony and plain creepy is blurred. Here are paintball teams that look like outright militia, and some are. They include a church team in full combat gear a German group that re-enacts LAPD swat team offensives, and three very disturbing teams: a Japanese paintball re-enactment of the Yugoslav civil war complete with Serbian militia uniforms; an US vs Iraq shoot em up in Jordan and a sinister third Reich Team with Eagle T-shirts. Vote them down.

12 very disturbing paintball teams

The picture of people hunched over radar screens is the ultimate image of the cold war. Here are a collection of various radar consoles, from land air and sea and from round analog displays with orange, green or blood red displays, to today’s computer monitor versions.

12 radar consoles

It seems like oil cleanup includes some of the most basic and advanced technologies, from literally hoovering it up, to skimming it and burning it, using oil eating bacteria and swarms of Roomba style oil cleanup bots.

oil spill cleanup technologies

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WTF is that? #12

July 16th, 2009 #link

wtf

What was in this case? It’s topical.



7 Responses to “WTF is that? #12”

  1. DanRR Says:

    It’s an ALSRC, Apollo Lunar Sample Return Container also referred as “rock box”.
    http://www.nasm.si.edu/events/apollo11/objects/apolloartifact.cfm?id=A19710814000

  2. Gaijiniji Says:

    Is it a case for holding radioactive material?

  3. admin Says:

    @Dan. Yes it is!

    And suitably impressive it is too. Often items designed to transport precious objects are disappointing wooden crates, but this box is absolutely perfect.

    If it had been made by a Hollywood prop designer I would have thought that it was too overblown. But its the real thing, and with its Swiss bank vault like protection it is a thing of beauty.

    Happy 40th birthday rock box that rocks!

  4. Ryan Says:

    This would be perfect for my collection of ch.. I mean porn. Just normal porn.

  5. BRUCE CREE Says:

    it’s one piece of my gf’s luggage (a container inside of a container)

  6. Mighty Mike Says:

    Right the first time. It’s the case used to bring back lunar rocks to Earth. Then again, I’m in the biz, so have a slight edge.

  7. Shawn Says:

    As a custom case designer by trade, I’m impressed. Altho I could do without the banding across the top, but if it makes them feel better, so be it. Pelican take notice!