There ought to be a prize for rediculously “out there” engineering ideas. This one’s described as as a ‘straddling bus’ design to beat traffic jams though since it runs on rails it’s technically a tram rather than a bus.
All it needs is for International Rescue to save the day when something goes horribly wrong.
Click in the link to watch the video on the Guardian site.
I have often wondered whether a generation of engineers who grew up in the Soviet Union used to watch episodes of Gerry Anderson’s Thunderbirds and saw it as an example of western technology that they had to compete with.
It’s the only plausible explanation for some of the things they built.
The spirit lives on in Russia today. This amphibious all-terrain vehicle is exactly the sort of thing you might expect to find in one of Thunderbird 2′s pods.
Gerry Anderson, who died at Christmas, was a major part of my childhood. As noted science-fiction author Alastair Reynolds said on Twitter, Anderson created a future that seemed believable and lived-in. He filled the loosely-linked universes of Stingray, Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet with vast engineering projects, all lovingly created in miniature, then frequently blown to bits at the end of the episode. And it was all made in my home town of Slough, in an industrial unit so anonymous nobody is now completely sure which one it was.
It’s remakable how well his 60s work stands the test of time, and has been proved by the number of times it’s been repeated to enthrall new generations. Compare it with the cardboard and plasticene of Dr Who from the same period, for example. And it’s all from an age where children’s TV weren’t just glorified toy marketing campaigns. I don’t think there ever were toys made of half the machines from Thunderbirds.
And we mustn’t forget Barry Gray’s magificent scores, which I’m sure had an effect on my taste in music over the following decades. How many other TV series had incidental music still memorable after 40 years?
So farewell Gerry. You were someone who knew how to capture the imagination of every seven year old.