9 Awesome Gadgets from Battlestar Galactica

When most people think of the SCI FI series Battlestar Galactica, they think of super-sophisticated synthetic lifeforms (a.k.a. Cylons) and starships that travel faster than light. But those aren't the show's only high-tech wonders; check out these mind-blowing futuristic devices that make this show a paragon of cutting-edge science fiction.

1_clumsyphones_adama.jpg1. Ultra-Durable Phones
The phones on the Galactica are built to last. Forget your RAZR or your iPhone, these are the next step in telecommunications: armored, indestructible handsets. And note the wire connecting it to a network: no dropped calls with these babies! Best part? They're sound-activated, so you never run out of battery power.

2_dradis.jpg2. Radio Detection and Ranging

Forget those losers on Star Trek or Stargate who have ships with big-screen plasma TVs as their window on the universe. The battlestar Galactica detects nearby objects by bouncing radio waves off of them via a system called DRADIS. If Roddenberry were alive, we bet he would've wished he'd thought of that!

3_bullets.jpg3. Hard Projectiles

Talk about tactical brilliance. Instead of shooting big, slow pulses of energy, or charged plasma, or whatever it is that goons on other sci-fi series use to miss their targets, the troops and fighter aircraft on the Galactica use slugs of metal propelled by chemical combustion. For every glowing tracer round you actually see, you're probably getting hit by 10 you didn't. We predict this will be the badass weapon of the future.

4_crutches.jpg4. External Appendages

Powered exoskeletons and cybernetic prostheses are so last week. The BSG guys remembered the principle of Occam's razor and concocted therapeutic devices that are easy to use and incredibly energy-efficient: one is a rod you lean on while walking, and the other is a pair of ingenious, stilt-like supports that you prop under your armpits. Where do they get these brilliant ideas?

5_hammers.jpg5. Impact Tools

If you had to fix a malfunctioning faster-than-light jump engine, you'd probably expect to use a dynoscanner or a gravitic caliper or some similar supercomplicated gadget, right? Wrong. As we've all learned from watching BSG, you need more brawn than finesse, slamming the problem mechanism with a percussive tool. If none are available, the heel of your shoe would probably do the trick.

pegasus_cic.jpg6. Non-Networked Computers

Can you remember the last time you used a computer that didn't connect to the Internet? Neither can we. That's what's so mind-blowing about the electronics on the Galactica. Imagine: an entire starship full of advanced computing technology, and no e-mail. They finally solved the spam problem! If that's not pie-in-the-sky science fiction, we don't know what is.

7_dryerase.jpg7. Erasable Marker Boards

No chalk on board the Galactica: Probably one of the coolest things ever seen on a science-fiction TV series: they write in what looks like ink on these big, white boards — and then, they erase the ink and write something else! Wild! Where can we get one?

8_tac_tools.jpg8. Solid-State Tactical Planning Tools

Forget your holographic models or your CGI simulations, this is the way to plan a war: with not-to-scale models on a big table. Best of all, if you run out of pieces for something important, like Vipers, you can just substitute spare change or something.

9_xrays.jpg9. Gamma-Ray Photographs

Okay, this is pretty intense: these guys have devices that can look through soft tissue and take pictures of people's frickin' skeletons. That's just creepy. Good thing it's a technology that you can only find in deep space.