There are any number of iconic devices that science fiction stories have conjured up over the years. Star Trek‘s transporters. Star Wars‘ lightsabers. Back to the Future‘s hoverboard. By far one of the most useful, however, is the sonic screwdriver from Doctor Who. The sonic screwdriver’s functionality is nebulously defined, allowing the writers to assign the device whatever ability they need during the episode in question. It’s a portable, handheld deus ex machina, and any SF fan worth their salt would love to own one. Sadly, we’ll probably never have functional, real-life sonic screwdrivers, but next month you’ll be able to purchase the next best thing: a sonic screwdriver universal remote control.
The new remote is designed after the one used by the current Eleventh Doctor played by Matt Smith. The device uses a three-access accelerometer to detect movements, allowing you to use gestures to flip channels, change the volume, and so forth. The product description notes that the sonic screwdriver’s psychic interface has been disabled in these models “to avoid confusion and chaotic usage.” In other words, they don’t want you to be trying to mute the TV and instead accidentally shutting off the hydraulics of an overhead passenger plane. That’s what really happened to Oceanic 815, you know.
If you’re in the mood just to fiddle around with it instead of using the remote control to actually, you know, remotely control something, you can switch it into “FX mode,” which produces different sound and light effects with various gestures.
The Sonic Screwdriver Universal Remotes will be going on sale on August 31st, listing for $99.95 here in the States and £59.95 in the UK.