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ucme's avatar

How would you wish to travel if the internal combustion engine were a figment of our imagination?

Asked by ucme (46641points) April 5th, 2010

Which do you think would be the primary form of transport today in this event? Which would be your preferred based on convenience, romance or cost effectivness?

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30 Answers

Dr_Dredd's avatar

Jaunting! (Like in Alfred Bester’s book “The Stars My Destination.”) Teleportation is cool!

MarcoNJ's avatar

By teleportation. Bamn! “Honey, I’m home!”

Snarp's avatar

Streetcars + feet. Horses would be untenable at current population densities – too much poop, not enough food. Plus, horses are expensive and require extensive care. Streetcars would be a necessity, and feet would suffice the rest of the time.

MarcoNJ's avatar

But if I couldn’t teleport. Then walking. I walk a lot anyways. Back and forth from work to home, 5 days a week. It’s how I maintain this supremely slender physique of mine.

njnyjobs's avatar

horse and buggy

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

Living in a small town in a rural area would be nearly impossible for me without access to reliable transportation to a city.

This region generates our electricity by burning fossil fuels so even electric trams and trains would still ultimately depend on combustion.

Life was very hard in the days before electricity and automobiles. I do not believe I could live (long) under such circumstances.

The urgency to implement truly clean alternative energy sources has never been clearer.

Despite the availability of cleaner sources of power, public policy still does not move society towards abandoning the burning of fossil fuels!

jaytkay's avatar

We had mass transit before we had internal combustion. Cross-continental railroads, streetcars, cable cars, subways, elevated trains, inter-urban rail – all existed without internal combustion.

But personally I like bicycles and horses.

wundayatta's avatar

I would want to be pulled around by herds of lemmings.

Except not over the cliff.

Well, that’s a myth too, but hey! We are talking hypotheticals!

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

Magnetic train powered by electricity.

ragingloli's avatar

Cars driven by electric engines. But I would rather walk or take the bus or train.

phillis's avatar

I was more than a little dismayed after I finished watching the documentary Who Killed the Electric Car, but will reserve my cynicism for a more appropriate question. Suffice it to say, magentized electric travel ( like many newer rollercoasters employ), and electric batteries, are ideal. Had the electric car had it’s chance to evolve naturally, speed and short-lived charges would have long since been resolved, as would the affordability issue.

loser's avatar


CyanoticWasp's avatar

External combustion: steam engines and/or electric-powered vehicles.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

I have loved Steam locomotives all my life. They still relied on combustion of wood or coal. Yes, the combustion took place outside the source of motive power but Steam engines were dirty, noisy and dangerous and even less efficient than what we have now. I love them but I can’t advocate for them as a solution.

Trillian's avatar

I’d like to fly with my own personal Jet pack.

lilikoi's avatar

Sailing and feet.

davidbetterman's avatar

Electromagnetic propulsion, like how they travel(ed) in Atlantis and Mu.

Trillian's avatar

@davidbetterman You forgot Lemuria. Or was Mu it’s Capitol?

davidbetterman's avatar

@Trillian Yes, Mu was established by the Lemurians in the Pacific ocean, about the same time as they established Atlantis in the Atlantic…Atlantis (what is left of it) is now the Azores of Portugal, while Mu is/was apparently Hawaii, and the Menehune of Hawaii were apparently Lemurians.

UScitizen's avatar

The external combustion engine would be more than adequate. Steam, being an ideal gas, works quite well at transferring energy to a moving piston or a spinning turbine.

davidbetterman's avatar

@UScitizen Yes, but it is somewhat difficult to build a fire in your back seat to get that steam for your Honda…

Cruiser's avatar

On the wings of Icarus!

jaytkay's avatar

@davidbetterman @UScitizen Yes, but it is somewhat difficult to build a fire in your back seat to get that steam for your Honda…

But an electric Honda can run off the utility’s steam turbine.

@lilikoi Sailing

I forgot sailing!! I append my answer – I prefer bicycles, horses and sailing!

YARNLADY's avatar

For pleasure I would like to fly, but for transportation, simple mental choice to be somewhere else would suffice. (teleportation).

JeffVader's avatar

I rather like the idea of transportation by cannon…... you know, like those guys from the Circus.

mattbrowne's avatar

Riding an Ikran.

wundayatta's avatar

@mattbrowne I’ll bite. What’s an Ikran?

mattbrowne's avatar

A fictitious strong flying reptile carrying human passengers

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