Thursday, 14 May 2015

"Lung Puppy" Sentient Toy (1975)


This magazine scan is of an advert for 'Lung Puppy', one of the many so-called "sentient toys" on the market in the 1970s. Not only did it follow your child anywhere (as long as your child was breathing), it also contained a device in the tongue that tested the child's galvanic skin response. If it detected inappropriate sweating, it assumed guilt and administered a Taser-like shock (see also: electrified Bibles, 'Discovering Scarfolk' p.149). The toy was not recommended for asthmatics or those being regularly waterboarded.

A more sophisticated version of the Lung Puppy - the Lung Alpaca - was used by the prison service to patrol cell blocks in Scarfolk Gaol. However, Lung Alpacas were withdrawn from service when 12 prisoners harvested the Alpaca's wool, knitted tunnelling equipment and escaped. By chance the gang was recaptured when a Lung Puppy which was previously owned by one of the criminals as a child detected his owner's breathing and lead police to the hideout.

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