For those of you who do not know me I am a New Babbage Resident dating back to the Sprocket days. I am not part of the “Old Guard” or what I call “Babbage 1.0” but more like Babbage 1.5 (If you must know I think we are on about “Babbage 3.5” right now.) In my almost 4 years in New Babbage I have seen many changes, many great builds come and go and even the mysteriously destroyed Academy of Industry Mk1 (I am looking at you Dr. O).
As some of you might know, my typist is a photographer and engineer when not sitting behind a computer. He also lives in the Pioneer Valley of Massachusetts, an area that was almost real life steam punk 120 years ago. The Springfield Armory was the birthplace of interchangable parts, The Stevens-Duryea produced in Chicopee was the first production Automobile in the United States (several years before Henry Ford invented the moving production line) not to mention a Rolls Royce Automobile plant, the second commercial radio transmitter, and many other precision industries.
While taking some photographs on Labor Day (you can read about it here http://holyokephoto.com/main/2011/09/06/water-street-mills-on-labor-day-2011/ ) my typist began thinking what will 1880’s New Babbage look like in 2011? Will it be like Holyoke or Springfield, MA? Like the meat packing district of New York? It is a really interesting question to entertain. There really is no way to know for sure, but he’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject.
I imagine by 2011 the air would be so thick with smog that youd need air filters on every street lamp just to see the roads. Probably lots of things built on top of the old like the Seattle underground.
Thats if it isnt a giant burning crater in the ground by then, which I could also see as a possibility.
More like Blade Runner or 5th Element. Build the buildings taller to get above the inversion layer.
I see one of two futures taking place:
1) The City that Time Forgot: Babbage becomes more insular, isolated and self-sufficient. Instead of expanding outward, the city builds taller and taller buildings and deeper and deeper underground, growing dense forests around its edges for wood and slant mining for metal ore and geothermal energy. By 2011, there are enormous skyscrapers and subterranean dwellings (a steam-filled, neon-lit Fritz Lang fever dream) where men still wear bowlers and frock coats, mad scientists’ laboratories still explode and ill-fated wedding receptions still take place at Piermont Landing (version 10.2).
2) The humans all leave the city and automatons take it over. By the 21st century, it’s just one big, city-sized, gear-driven, self-sustaining difference engine that everyone has forgotten about. Until it tries to take over the world.
As a newcomer to the City it perhaps can be argued I am not well qualified to comment. However I can tell you what I see through the eyes (or goggles) of a new resident with no preconceptions or prior opinion.
I see New Babbage 2011 with its wealth innovators having wonderful and exciting solutions to the issues confronting humanity in 2011.
As a single example we all know our beloved City is the Sootiest on the grid 1n 188X, however by 2011 the inventive minds of the collective genius of the City will have reached the conclusion, especially following the horrific natural disasters that have recently befallen Japan and the global repercussions on nuclear generated power, the developing nations really have no choice economically but to use “dirty” coal powered electricity generating stations.
However with the enormous experience our City has with over a century of soot friendliness I believe our best minds will have developed ways of harvesting soot, and other chemicals and pollutants immediately pre- emission to the atmosphere via huge smokestacks (we should NEVER allow the word smokestack to slip from the lexicon).
The harvested/recycled soot, and other chemicals and “pollutants” would, after if required some reprocessing, be reinjected into the furnace to contribute to the fuel source,
Finally I would like to say as I wander the streets of our wonderful City and see the enormous wealth and co-operative spirit of teaching / mentoring / helping / accepting and understanding of individual differences in all manner of areas including , but by no way limited to creativity / technology / art and science from New Babbagers drawn from all over the world and given so willingly and freely all I can say in conclusion is a humbled thank you to Mayor Tenk and each and every resident past, present and future for allowing me to be part of this wonderful place that really does live and most importantly work.
Summary – New Babbage 2011 will be the exemplar City/State/Nation all others will use as a global benchmark.
Endless Blackrain shall now revert to his books and what he has overheard some say are his eccentric ways, whatever they mean be.
Being an east coast/ New York/ New England gal myself who has been fortunate ((or not )) to have traveled a great deal .. smiles .. found this also quite .. well take a look and Gatsby well done Sir !!
Some industrious urchin will discover the power of wind and solar way before it’s time in the the real world. The air will be significantly cleaner. Other than that I agree with the vision of the very tall buildings with some underground dwellings with forrest and farm land surrounding the city. As the buildings rise above the cloud of pollution and the air quality improves we may even see a return to rooftop food gardens/green houses.
I heart heart heart heart the idea of part of the city being underground. Not enough people think on the Z-axis. I’ve been saying for awhile that if I came into some money, I’d pay Lunar to raise Steelhead Seattle and a signficant part of the build would be underground.
i already found out bout the power of wind, it’s due to too much vole cheese… oh… you didn’t mean that? errr… well… it probably could power an engine………
There’s a Steelhead Seattle?!?
the seattle underground isn’t all that. if you’ve been to the bucket, you’ve seen most of it.
It also smells bad.
((Typist works in Pioneer Square.))
Oh that’s too bad…I was just in Seattle and was saying how the next trip needed to include a visit of the underground. I’ll stick with Pike Place Market….or the Experience Music Project…or… a coffee shop, as there’s one every 10 feet.
The history talk part of the tour makes it worth going on, if you are not a local.
((It’s a mythical steampunk city of wonder and advanced technology ahead of it’s time. Of course it’s doomed, how else would it become legendary? :)
Actually it’s continued existence till 2011 is something of a horror story in many ways, especially to anyone who might already feel that it is in decline. Here’s a little nightmare fuel for you: If it had continued to strive to look as it does now, then while it might be a tourist attraction it would no longer be considered ahead of it’s time, but quaint and old-fashioned while people and their children looked up all the information they wanted on it on their iphone’s while wearing modern clothing, sort of like all the mainlanders who visit New Babbage now wearing their ‘bling’. Anyone who continued to dress in the fashions of the 1880’s would then be considered people who dress up for renisance fairs, the Hawaian hula girls you see getting off the plane, or too old fashioned to let go of the past. Also I have trouble believing that Babbage would stay the same, since it’s always changing and once the technology improved Babbage would have converted to better materials for everything. As the city Moringtonized every few months more buildings using the new materials would make the old disappear and with it the gritty Victorian look of the city would vanish more and more. People who did move in from outside would also bring their digital clocks, among other technologies that would slowly spread to everyone else including gaming systems. The city wouldn’t get rid of it’s old clocks that are part of the buildings, at least not till it came time to Moringtonize and they would at least consider upgrading as the new younger generation of Babbagers started to take over, having no such sentiments. Only the sealed off Old Quarter would retain it’s original form, if it remained sealed at all and they didn’t let tours go through.
In short, Victor Morington is this city’s worst enemy and he must be stopped. (*Laughs to show he’s just kidding*)
Anyways, it’s my opinion that the destruction of Babbage is actually in the cities best (long term) interests. If it doesn’t get swallowed up by the Vernian trapezoid, or get stuck in a perpetual 1880’s decade loop that altered the perception of
reality of anyone who got close that would now believe they’d always existed in said time frame, then I’m pretty sure that like the Conneticut Yankee in King Arthurs Court, or Atlantis, Babbage either blows up or sinks into the sea. I’ll root for the 1880’s decade loop.))
There is far too much whimsy lying just beneath the surface of New Babbage (or above the surface in some places) for it to have a merely ordinary future.
Perhaps New Babbage wouldn’t always be steamy and sooty, but I can’t imagine that the Babbagers 100 years from now will be any less rebellious and raucous than the ones now. Babbagers born and bred for more than 100 years? Yeah, the city wouldn’t be unusual at ALL. *snerk*
The city will have a well-earned, worldwide reputation for irreverence and experimentation, as the city that wonders why something can’t be done simply because it never has been before. Our villains would be the stuff of legend. Our heros would simply get back to work.
With a motto like ours, you have to know that we’ll be capturing passing meteors and building space elevators in 2011 or be long gone in a smoking pit left by something well-intentioned that nonetheless went horribly awry.
Whatever the case, we won’t be left behind as new technologies emerge. We’ll adopt them, adapt them, and stretch them to unnatural limits.
And whenever a Babbager meets another Babbager elsewhere in the world, you know there will be drinking and mayhem to follow.
“what will 1880’s New Babbage look like in 2011?”
Ya don’t wanna know, Mr. Gatsby.
Oh wait, Oy dint sye thet. (Jim runs away fast)
There are a few babbagers who will still be alive at that point in the future. I suspect at some point they will run into eachother and all have their covers blown in one spectacular evening.
Then form the League of Extraordinary Babbagers.
The city itself? Bigger, steamier, both slightly ahead and behind the rest of the world. Still lacking in all those social nicities which other cities pride themselves on.
The big question is: Has the Old District been pulled out of quaranteen or is it a place still trapped in time, seperate from the outside world?
Maybe not all in ‘The League of Extraordinary Babbagers.’ I picture an overweight old man (who the locals call ‘Tubby’) sitting on a bench outside the museum, surrounded by pigeons (waiting for him to fall asleep so they can steal his popcorn) telling stories of the good old day when kids knew how to catch monsters.
yes. the turk’s head, through a series of misadventures, was eventually bought by an eccentric real estate developer in wisconson, where it resides today.
We will build streets in the sky! And buildings so tall and large that one can live a complete lifetime without ever venturing outside!
Clockwork will provide for everyones needs to such a degree that humans will no longer have to work in order to live their lives! Everything they would ever wish for will be provided for them in their own homes! So in the utopia of New-Babbage everyone will live in perpetual bliss!
*tries to get away from Avariel’s Brave New World*
*and turns into Logan’s Run*
*from The Island*
*and arrives on the set of Soylent Green*
“Soylent Green is urchins!”
ummm….. no… possibly Soylent off grey with grungy bits…. unless……
Tepic yells “SCALD!!!”
lucite sandals and food tablets for everyone!
In 100 years New Babbage will look like Coruscant, and every building will have a tavern or pub in it.
((Another thought occured to me. During the 1930’s Babbage is bound to start working on nuclear power, and once that happens all our villains and scientists will work extra hard to get their hands on it.
Given the rate at which our scientists lose control of incredibly questionable experiments, if there was anything left Babbage’s future can probably then be summed up in one game title, Fallout: New Babbage.))
I would play Fallout: New Babbage forever and ever.
*walks out of the Brunel Vault and rubs her eyes*
Man, I’d give major caps for a cold Babba-Cola
Isn’t there a GECK kit to create custom Fallout 3 areas?
New project? A Fallout: New Babbage downloadable game?
You could, but youd need to build all the new models and things in a 3d program first, then do all the fancy things to make them compatible with fallout, THEN put them together with the geck.
Then figure out how to make anything work in the geck.
In the future, New Babbage will lead the world in gene modification resulting in new foods and unfortunately, new diseases. Experimentation with dna will result in genetically superior humans.
also in some proliferation of cross breeds among humans, mer people, and air krakens to name a few… *diabolic grin*
::the little green kid’s eyes widen at Serafina, shaking his head emphatically no and trying to look innocent despite the tray of strange seedlings in his hands::
Nonsense! My experiments are perfectly under control! ::pauses and turns to run back to the lab to make sure he’d remembered to close off one of the tubes::