Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Just What You See, Pal

From Terminator (the first film):

The Terminator: The .45 Long Slide, with laser sighting.
Alamo Guns Clerk: These are brand new; we just got these in. That's a good gun. Just touch the trigger, the beam comes on and you put the red dot where you want the bullet to go. You can't miss. Anything else?
The Terminator: Phased-plasma rifle in the forty watt range.
Alamo Guns Clerk: Hey, just what you see, pal.

News Item: Researchers demonstrate 100-watt-level mid-infrared lasers. "...room temperature peak output power as high as 120 watts was obtained from a single device, which is up from 34 watts only a year ago."

So our technology has passed that 40 watt threshold in the past year. Just sayin'.


Terrant said...

Laser weapons and plasma weapons are different technologies. So a 40 watt plasma might be more powerful than a 40 watt laser. Fortunately, they both use the same skill. You should play some more Fallout (or I need to play less).

Lockwood said...

Terrant- Yeah, I suppose you're right. But you can use a plasma to create a laser, and vice versa, right? So it's almost like they're interchangeable. Particle-wave duality and all.

Terrant said...

The nice thing about science fiction is that we can both be right :). Actually when someone says a plasma gun, I think of something that fires a mass that is in the plasma state of matter. In the real world, you are probably closer in that the plasma will be used to create a beam of energy.