Monday, January 26, 2009

Home, Sweet Home

This is cool.
Prolitec, Inc. today unveiled the Air/Q(TM) Whole House Air Freshener(TM) (WHAF) -- the first fully adjustable, HVAC-integrated home air freshening system.
Reminds me of the holodeck-like nursery in the Happylife Home, from a story in The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury.
The nursery was silent. It was empty as a jungle glade at hot high noon. The walls were blank and two dimensional. Now, as George and Lydia Hadley stood in the center of the room, the walls began to purr and recede into crystalline distance, it seemed, and presently an African veldt appeared, in three dimensions; on all sides, in colors reproduced to the final pebble and bit of straw. The ceiling above them became a deep sky with a hot yellow sun.

George Hadley felt the perspiration start on his brow.

“Let’s get out of this sun,” he said. “This is a little too real. But I don’t see anything wrong.”

“Wait a moment, you’ll see,” said his wife.

Now the hidden odorophonics were beginning to blow a wind of odor at the two people in the middle of the baked veldtland. The hot straw smell of lion grass, the cool green smell of the hidden water hole, the great rusty smell of animals, the smell of dust like a red paprika in the hot air.
Kinda cool but kinda creepy.


Anonymous said...

Bradbury was so amazing in those days. In another story, (unfortunately, I don't remember which one) he writes about a human visitor to an alien world seeing colors he'd never seen before. That idea has stayed with me my entire life.

I read that his working method was this: haul yourself out of bed the instant you wake up, and start writing immediately, no coffee, no newspaper. He would say it put him in touch with the dream-world, which he saw as more creative, with less censoring from the logical mind.

Obviously it worked for him!

BTW, thanks for the link!


Avery Gilbert said...


When it comes to smell, Ray Bradbury definitely "gets it." I posted before on Fahrnheit 451 mainly to reference the Mechanical Hound (another brilliant conceit). In that book he uses smells to represent freedom and the natural, unplugged world. Bradbury has all three of the traits I think are required for "olfactory genius."