Friday, March 31, 2017

On The Internet, No One Knows You’re A Targ

A recent project had me fitting my Mazda3 with a cloaking device.  The  goal was just to learn, as speeding without being seen is arguably more dangerous than speeding while visible.

Here is a photo sequence of the cloaking device in action.  There was absolutely no photoshop trickery!

Photo 1: Mazda3
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Photo 2: So'wI' chu'  (Engage cloaking device)


Photo 3: Qapla'! (Success!)


The most difficult part of this project wasn’t the installation, although I did need special tools, including a phase coil resonator.  Nor was it the additional power requirements; I simply advanced the engine’s spark timing and switched from regular gasoline to premium.  No, the difficult part was locating the parts.  eBay and Craigslist were dead ends.  Inquiries on various car forums went unanswered.  And I sniffed around several junkyards to no avail. 

The last junkyard search ended like all the others — in  failure — but it led me to a nearby bar for a much needed drink.   Like so many patrons before me, I told the barkeep my story.  He listened intently, and said he could help me for a small fee.   This was the best lead I had, so I paid.  Handing me a business card with no other markings except a number, he said  “It’s late. He’s closed. Call him tomorrow.”

The next day, I called the number.  After some awkward introductions, I asked how he could be sure the parts he had were what I needed.  He answered “Hard plastics.”  I heard him rapping his knuckles on his desktop for emphasis.  “The dash is hard.  The elbow rest is hard.  Even the seats are hard.  Only humans want soft touch points and leather padded surfaces.”

I was sold.

Today, I am happily cruising in cloaked mode, although I need to de-cloak when I come to a red light or risk someone rear ending me.  Logically, that makes my next project deflector shields.  It’s just that no one has solved the power requirements for running both a cloak and shields together.

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