Never mind your forgotten jetpack future. Two new developments in the world of consumer comfort prove the future is now, earthlings. One of them comes from hotel chain Travelodge, and the other, direct from the mind of George Lucas. Which just shows that the paths of science fiction and real science will eventually lead to a Sharper Image catalog.
Firstly, who could resist these beautiful new "sleepsuits" from Travelodge? Now you won't just dream about being an astronaut when you sleep, you can actually look like one too! Inspired, the hotel chain claims, by scientific studies on how best to decrease common irritations that prevent people from sleeping - like itching, heat loss or not looking like an astronaut who's lost his spacesuit, for example — the outfits will be available in five hotels to begin with. They're free and available to take home, to be worn by the gullible or fetishistic after their stay. It may not be the future of sleepwear, but admit it. You kind of want one right now, don't you?
Meanwhile, British inventor Kevin Dixon has created something much more practical: A hover-chair that allows you to defy gravity as you sit back and relax. With the first consumer versions going on sale in the UK next month, Dixon feels safe enough to reveal just where the idea came from:
He was inspired by the Landspeeder vehicles that hover over the ground in the Star Wars films. "I remember clearly watching Star Wars as a small boy and being absolutely fascinated by the sand vehicle . . . I really wanted to levitate and I just knew I could make it happen," he said.
The power of positive thinking or terrifying proof that the world of furniture is so desperate for new ideas that it'll accept anything? You be the judge.
Sci-fi suit? Actually, it's my Travelodge pyjamas [Daily Mail.co.uk]
It's lift-off for the Star Wars armchair [Times Online.co.uk]