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15 May 2013
Symbiotic Gum

I spend a lot of my life living in an invented sci-fi future, most of which is an internalised composite of my favourite authors’ visions, but little bits of which are from my own mind.

Below is an idea for a little pet you can chew (and not get frowned at for it).


A highly durable bioengineered organism the size of a piece of gum that makes its habitat in the mouth. This gateway organism would provide a framework for modular enhancements. Its base functions would be:

Health (of host)

Mop up excess acids, sugars, to protect teeth. Release phenylalanine. Rapid preliminary reaction to poisons in a proportionally reactive manner:

a) releasing neutralising countermeasures

b) release foul-tasting chems, trigger spitting out mouthful

c) triggering vomit reflex immediately

Energy generation

Mechanism analagous to piezo-electricity for generating power. Energy recovered from chemicals that are removed to protect teeth.

Durability

It needs to be tough but still able to perform chemical transfer. A flexible internal structure. If it is torn, self healing properties (either when placed in a matrix outside the body or by returning to its tiny mouth shelter).

Then, in terms of additional functionality:

Modularity

Vast potential!

  • Flavour upgrades
  • Flavour modifiers - don’t like sprouts? Now you do!
  • Behavioural control - hourly patrols along your gums?
  • Swapping flavours / data with those you kiss. (Additionally, protection against girl cooties.)

Not entirely sincere suggestions

If you don’t wish to be chewing it, instead of spitting it out it might construct a small home for itself near the salivary glands or under the tongue. For extra cuteness, and to prevent swallowing, give it a tiny nanofiber leash (diamond encrusted collar might damage teeth, though).

A cybernetic alternative might offer far more functionality in terms of remote management, logging of dietary intake, reminding when and what to eat, providing subtle cues (such as reminders) via flavour compounds.


Domo aregardos,
J at 17:42

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