History Main / CoolButInefficient

2nd Apr '18 6:51:05 PM TitaniumDragon
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** Today, however, it is an excellent weapon for the US military. Indeed, one interesting factor of a great deal of US Military equipment is that it works excellently but requires proper maintenance and logistics backing it up. Ironically, this turns it [[SubvertedTrope into an advantage:]] captured equipment can't be used very long before it will stop functioning effectively. Moreover, developing countries can't duplicate the equipment effectively because they can't maintain or support it properly.
4th Mar '18 1:48:43 PM jmackaerospace
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This is not in the least helped by a tendency not to do the research; futuristic rayguns also tend to lack some of the most common sense [[KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter niceties of modern firearms.]] The most frequent mistake is the lack of a trigger guard, which would guarantee that phasers and blasters go off when incorrectly carried or set away. Just as common is a lack of anything vaguely resembling sights, a shoulder stock, or anything else to give you an edge over just firing from the hip. It doesn't help that almost no protagonist has [[ArtisticLicenseGunSafety any clue whatsoever about basic firearm safety]], frequently keeping their fingers on the triggers, waving loaded guns around like feather dusters, and never, ever applying the safety catch, if there even is one.

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This is not in the least helped by a tendency not to do the research; futuristic rayguns also tend to lack some of the most common sense [[KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter niceties of modern firearms.]] The most frequent mistake is the lack of a trigger guard, which would guarantee that phasers and blasters go off when incorrectly carried or set away. Just as common is a lack of anything vaguely resembling sights, a shoulder stock, or anything else to give you an edge over just firing from the hip. It doesn't help that almost no protagonist has [[ArtisticLicenseGunSafety any clue whatsoever about basic firearm safety]], frequently keeping their fingers on the triggers, waving loaded guns around like feather dusters, and never, ever applying the safety catch, if there even is one.
hip, or indeed a rate fire better than a flintlock.
15th Feb '18 8:26:24 AM Vir
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* In a ''WesternAnimation/RobotChicken'' sketch with ComicBook/RichieRich, we get a tour of his house where he stated he now owns a hybrid. The hybrid of it being a Bentley and a Monster Truck which got 3 feet to a full tank of gas.

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* In a ''WesternAnimation/RobotChicken'' sketch with ComicBook/RichieRich, we get a tour of his house where he stated he now owns a hybrid. The hybrid of it being a Bentley and a Monster Truck monster truck which got 3 feet to a full tank of gas.
12th Feb '18 10:46:42 PM BattleMaster
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** The Vengeance weapons, the V1 cruise missile and the V2 theatre ballistic missile. The V1 was fairly effective for its day, but by the time it was operational the Allies had radar-equipped fighter aircraft and almost complete air superiority, and the majority were shot down long before reaching their targets. The V2 by contrast was impossible to intercept, but wasn't accurate enough to hit anything smaller than a specific city, making it strategically useless. The Nazis essentially paid several times more for a weapon that did less damage than a conventional formation of bomber planes.

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** The Vengeance weapons, the V1 cruise missile and the V2 theatre ballistic missile. The V1 was fairly effective for its day, but by the time it was operational the Allies had radar-equipped fighter aircraft and almost complete air superiority, and the majority were shot down long before reaching their targets. The V2 by contrast was impossible to intercept, but wasn't accurate enough to hit anything smaller than a specific city, making it strategically useless. Also, by that time, the Allies were recapturing more and more German-controlled territory, with the result that target cities like London were further and further away from the V2 launch sites. And the only way that the Nazis could improve the V2's range was by reducing the size of the warhead. The Nazis essentially paid several times more for a weapon that did less damage than a conventional formation of bomber planes.
26th Jan '18 4:47:11 PM FlashRebel
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** The first attempt at adding early firearms in the game resulted in a musket and a pistol that were barely better than crossbows in terms of damage and range, were classified as exotic weapons and had ludicrously expensive ammunition. Crossbows were already pretty unpopular anyway since the only way to get a viable ranged character was with feats to spray enemies with arrows and only bows and repeating crossbows (the latter being exotic weapons) allow it.
26th Jan '18 4:24:37 PM WillBGood
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** Perhaps the most garish example of CoolButInefficient technology is the Buzz Droid Missile in ''Film/RevengeOfTheSith''. A missile is deployed which tracks its target, ''flies ahead of the target'' and then explodes to disperse small droids which then must attempt to tear apart an enemy starfighter ''from the outside in''. Exactly how this is more efficient than simply packing the missile with high explosive and ''letting it hit the target first'' is not explained. While useful if you're trying to capture the target, they were not.

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** Perhaps the most garish example of CoolButInefficient Cool, but Inefficient technology is the Buzz Droid Missile in ''Film/RevengeOfTheSith''. A missile is deployed which tracks its target, ''flies ahead of the target'' and then explodes to disperse small droids which then must attempt to tear apart an enemy starfighter ''from the outside in''. Exactly how this is more efficient than simply packing the missile with high explosive and ''letting it hit the target first'' is not explained. While useful if you're trying to capture the target, they were not.



*** An episode centers around a firearm Starfleet was planning to use when their [[CoolButInefficient phasers]] wouldn't work. The weapon was quite versatile: The person using it could not be found by normal means, and it was modified with a microtransporter so that it could ''shoot through walls''. Even though the gun was shown to be incredibly efficient, they found a way around the phaser problem, so all work on it was dropped.

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*** An episode centers around a firearm Starfleet was planning to use when their [[CoolButInefficient phasers]] phasers wouldn't work. The weapon was quite versatile: The person using it could not be found by normal means, and it was modified with a microtransporter so that it could ''shoot through walls''. Even though the gun was shown to be incredibly efficient, they found a way around the phaser problem, so all work on it was dropped.
15th Jan '18 7:05:43 PM BattleMaster
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* The Buzzard Gunship is very much this in ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAutoV''. It can be cool to try flying around in a helicopter armed with dual machine guns and homing missiles, but given how twitchy flying is in the game, it's really, really hard to fly and shoot at the same time. Especially the guns, since they aren't mounted on a turret and strafing is not easy to do. Plus, with the two million dollar price tag, there's almost no way to get enough cash to buy it before you beat the final heist, [[BraggingRightsReward leaving you with little to actually do with it]].
3rd Jan '18 2:36:53 AM Cryoclaste
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* The [[XtremeKoolLetterz Krimzon Guard]] Hellcat cruisers in ''[[JakAndDaxter Jak II: Renegade]]'' easily qualify. On first sight, they're a flying tank, what's not to like? ...They're so large and slow they're nearly impossible to miss, they maneuver like a quadriplegic cow, their gun is no deadlier than that on the far nippier Guard speeder bike, and if you steal one, you'll piss off every Guard in the city. Just as an additional bonus, these annoyed Guard will come after you on speeders, crash into the back of your stolen Hellcat, and thoughtlessly explode, taking you down in an antigrav pileup... and if you're going along the ground, expect to have a dozen of these bikes hanging over your head raining fire while you try and fail to steer it around a corner without scratching the paintwork.

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* The [[XtremeKoolLetterz Krimzon Guard]] Hellcat cruisers in ''[[JakAndDaxter Jak II: Renegade]]'' ''VideoGame/JakIIRenegade'' easily qualify. On first sight, they're a flying tank, what's not to like? ...They're so large and slow they're nearly impossible to miss, they maneuver like a quadriplegic cow, their gun is no deadlier than that on the far nippier Guard speeder bike, and if you steal one, you'll piss off every Guard in the city. Just as an additional bonus, these annoyed Guard will come after you on speeders, crash into the back of your stolen Hellcat, and thoughtlessly explode, taking you down in an antigrav pileup... and if you're going along the ground, expect to have a dozen of these bikes hanging over your head raining fire while you try and fail to steer it around a corner without scratching the paintwork.
1st Jan '18 7:32:46 AM NamelessFragger
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* The firearm itself for a long time. It took over a century after their development before they were considered battleworthy and another century-plus after that before they fully replaced the bow and arrow. The cannon earned its keep much quicker.

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* The firearm itself was this for a long time. It took over a century after their development before they were considered battleworthy battleworthy, and another century-plus after that before they fully replaced the bow and arrow. The cannon earned its keep much quicker.


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* Audiophile equipment tends to be this by design, for a number of reasons depending on component.
** Class A amplifiers are considered to be the purest form of amplification, since they have the highest linearity and lowest signal distortion, but their always-conducting, single-transistor design puts them at a pitiful 30% efficiency, with the rest of the utilized energy being dispersed as waste heat - something that tends to kill off components not designed to withstand it for extended periods of operation. Classes B and AB were designed as more efficient compromises, with two transistors working in a push-pull configuration; the difference is that Class AB trades a bit of efficiency for a smoother crossover between the transistors, but still attains a noticeably improved 50% to 60% efficiency over the Class A design.
** Higher-end drivers (that is, the elements of a speaker or headphone that produce sound) tend to be stiffer and less sensitive, thus requiring more energy to move, but also being less prone to distortion. Whether that energy is current or voltage depends on driver type; dynamic and orthodynamic drivers tend to demand current, but electrostatic drivers instead require excessive voltages anywhere from 230V to 600V and beyond, which in turn requires either transformers with powerful conventional amplifiers, or purpose-built electrostatic amplifiers.
*** Combine the above points with the occasional preference for vacuum tubes instead of transistors in amplifier design, and you end up with equipment that guzzles power, runs hot, and invokes CrackIsCheaper on components ''alone'' before you factor in any markups... all for the sake of high-fidelity sound. Bonus coolness points if you're using orthodynamic or electrostatic loudspeakers, which have an inherently planar design to their drivers that makes them look like large, sound-emitting panels rather than the big boxes that dynamic drivers reside in.
23rd Dec '17 3:07:55 AM AnotherDuck
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* [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_pig Flaming.]] [[http://209.85.165.104/search?q=cache:KwNfH_XXOeIJ:www.gamespy.com/articles/516/516868p15.html+flaming+pigs&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=2&gl=us&client=firefox-a Pigs.]]
** [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-tank_dog Anti-Tank.]] [[http://www.soviet-empire.com/1/military/anti-tank/dog_mine/ Dogs.]]
** [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bat_bomb Bat Bombs.]]
** [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Pigeon Pigeon missiles.]]
** One can add war elephants to this, once the Romans worked out how to stampede them into the user's own armies. Hannibal was the only one, after the first two encounters, to successfully use elephants against the Romans, with the first success happening because the Romans were completely caught by surprise at seeing a squadron of elephants ''coming down from the Alps'' and the second because ''the elephants getting slaughtered was actually part of his plan''.
* Trying to use chainsaws as weapons, instead of as tools like they were designed for. Yes, [[ChainsawGood they're very awesome]] and can hack through trees and such, but try swinging around something that's big, loud, heavy and just plain messy and you'll probably severely injure/kill yourself. Should the chain get jammed or caught on anything, it can snap and whip out into your ''face''. Furthermore, while you're busy deafening yourself with a gas engine, you're giving away your position to the enemy and making it much easier to sneak up and use something quieter, like a bat or a brick. [[WhyDontYouJustShootHim Or a gun.]]
* If you have a micromanaging boss, they probably obsessively order you to do your job in a Cool But Inefficient fashion, while bitching about how your productivity sucks.

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* [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_pig Flaming.]] [[http://209.85.165.104/search?q=cache:KwNfH_XXOeIJ:www.gamespy.com/articles/516/516868p15.html+flaming+pigs&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=2&gl=us&client=firefox-a Pigs.]]
** [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-tank_dog Anti-Tank.]] [[http://www.soviet-empire.com/1/military/anti-tank/dog_mine/ Dogs.]]
** [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bat_bomb Bat Bombs.]]
** [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Pigeon Pigeon missiles.]]
**
One can add war elephants to this, once the Romans worked out how to stampede them into the user's own armies. Hannibal was the only one, after the first two encounters, to successfully use elephants against the Romans, with the first success happening because the Romans were completely caught by surprise at seeing a squadron of elephants ''coming down from the Alps'' and the second because ''the elephants getting slaughtered was actually part of his plan''.
* Trying to use chainsaws as weapons, instead of as tools like they were designed for. Yes, [[ChainsawGood they're very awesome]] and can hack through trees and such, but try swinging around something that's big, loud, heavy and just plain messy and you'll probably severely injure/kill yourself. Should the chain get jammed or caught on anything, it can snap and whip out into your ''face''. Furthermore, while you're busy deafening yourself with a gas engine, you're giving away your position to the enemy and making it much easier to sneak up and use something quieter, like a bat or a brick. [[WhyDontYouJustShootHim Or a gun.]]
* If you have a micromanaging boss, they probably obsessively order you to do your job in a Cool But Inefficient fashion, while bitching about how your productivity sucks.
plan''.



* The virtues of lasers as a weapon system are ''heavily'' debated, with innumerable threads on forums, the old Usenet, etc. filled with heated discussions of their flaws, virtues, and relative expense versus shooting bits of metal at high speed. See KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter.
** One plausible use for lasers might just be to take advantage of the fact that a laser beam is just coherent, high-intensity light and ''blind'' your target(s). As in, quite possibly for good. That'd still be a far cry from having a proper futuristic ray gun. More of a terror weapon, in fact... to the point that the [[UsefulNotes/TheLawsAndCustomsOfWar Geneva conventions]] [[http://www.un.org/millennium/law/xxvi-18-19.htm specifically prohibit]] the use of lasers in this way.

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* The virtues of lasers as a weapon system are ''heavily'' debated, with innumerable threads on forums, the old Usenet, etc. filled with heated discussions of their flaws, virtues, and relative expense versus shooting bits of metal at high speed. See KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter.
**
KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter. One plausible use for lasers might just be to take advantage of the fact that a laser beam is just coherent, high-intensity light and ''blind'' your target(s). As in, quite possibly for good. That'd still be a far cry from having a proper futuristic ray gun. More of a terror weapon, in fact... to the point that the [[UsefulNotes/TheLawsAndCustomsOfWar Geneva conventions]] [[http://www.un.org/millennium/law/xxvi-18-19.htm specifically prohibit]] the use of lasers in this way.



* Again, that ''Superiority'' short story? One university had it as required reading for engineers in training.



* [[ShotgunsAreJustBetter Shotguns]] and [[RevolversAreJustBetter revolvers]] are this with regards to the needs of a modern military. While they see significant civilian use, in most militaries both weapons are considered to be situational arms compared to the near ubiquitous assault rifle/carbine and the semi-automatic pistol.
** Shotguns are a complicated case. They're situational in combat and more cumbersome than assault rifles or carbines, but [[MundaneUtility incredibly versatile]] because of their ability to [[AbnormalAmmo fire just about anything]]. No soldier wants to carry an extra gun and its heavy ammunition just on the off-chance they might need one, though, so the military developed a [[TakeAThirdOption miniature shotgun that attaches to the assault rifle]].
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