Sunday, January 1, 2017


The "hoverboard", or skateboard with no wheels has been a long-running concept of sci-fi stories well into the 20th Century. In the early 21st, several working designs were made, but most were generally only "proof of concept" designs for scientific purposes which were not viable for mass market production. However, advances in fabrication and materials science have allowed the design to be actually a viable market in some circles. Fundamentally, there are two different kinds of hoverboard. The less expensive and more common design blends hovering and high-powered mini-rotors to produce an air hovering effect, which can allow a medium-sized morph to hover as a maximum of 1 meter off the ground in Martian gravity or less, but has trouble maintaining lift and power in more Earth-like gravity. The more expensive model utilizes high-capacity batteries and superconductors to levitate utilizing magnetic fields, and can do so in almost any gravity a transhuman can survive in, but only works on ferromagnetic surfaces - limiting most to use in special parks, neighborhoods or other structures.

Hoverboard: These boards are a common amusement of children and young adults or as personal transportation, and are generally about 20 cm in length. The contact point between the board and the user is made of a gripping material similar to micrograv shoes, to reduce the likelihood of falling off the board, and control is handled via a combination of feet and meshed controls. The underside differs wildly between the two types, with magnetic boards featuring sleek superconductor tracks, and air-powered models having slightly boxier bottoms for their impulse fans. Both models technically work in microgravity, though the magnetic kind operates in vacuum, and only the magnetic is good for Earth-like gravity. Generally one operates the hoverboard at about 30+ cm off the ground, though the impulse kind can go as high as 1m. Average speed for a board is about 35 kph, but theoretically they can move faster if one removed safety features which prevent it. [Low] for air-powered, [High] for magnetic

Passengers 1  Handling +10  Movement Rate 4/80 Max Velocity 35 AV 2 DUR 20 WT 4

'Board culture is diversely spread throughout the system. Luna, for instance, often regards hoverboards as childrens' toys before moving on to a backwing or winged morph. Venus and Titan both have skate parks and other sports areas for the boards, but for different reason - Venus so as to provide a dedicated place for magnetic boards, Titan as a public works effort to encourage people not to 'board in crowded streets. Spinhabs may also have public spaces set aside to board, and particularly among Scum or other free-wheeling anarchists boarding is popular even in micrograv - though this requires considerably more skill and contains more risk. Boarding is most popular among the urban martians, where it competes with parkour, bicycling and traditional skating (both inline and even skateboards) as an alternative to walking. Adventurous 'boarders even use the same paths as traceurs to get around above normal people. Leaving the city centers, boarding almost immediately dies off, however, as the use of air-powered models does not go well with Martian dust. Some people regard hoverboards as a public nuisance, as the air-powered models can be quite loud at full power - but luckily magnetic models are almost completely silent.

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