This sounds like the pitch for a horror movie. A crewless ship, adrift with only rats which will have started each other on board. It needs a stash of gold bars and maybe a few ghosts, just to take it to the next level.
Appearing about 240 BC, incendiary pigs were an interesting weapon thought to have been utilized in ancient Roman warfare. The concept was to cover the pig in tar and a flammable substance and, when lured close enough to the advancing or defending enemy the pigs would then be lit on fire. The hope was that the pigs would run uncontrollably into the ranks of the opposing force, causing a certain level of confusion. In any event, the idea was to make use of the weapon as a psychological tool to harass or scare the enemy into submission, or break his concentration at the very least.
The X-Planes tumbleblog has been doing a special feature on the Schneider trophy. The race was for flying boats and the floats they needed slowed the planes down. In 1929 the Italians came up with a typically gorgeous but mad design that tried to get around this. The Piaggio-Pegna PC.7 had a fuselage that doubled as a hull, two little hydrofoils instead of floats and a screw and rudder that would power and control the aircraft whilst the propeller was submerged. When it reached a sufficient speed the hydrofoils would lift the body, and propeller, clear of the water and the drive could be switched over. The one seated plane had too many controls that neede attention at once for one man to be able to operate it.
It’s completely mad, and it looks like the sort of thing you’d see in an anime or propellerpunk alternate history. It never flew.
A group of guerilla repairers have been cleared after breaking into the Pantheon in PAris and restoring its clock.
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