Sep. 29th, 2018

purplecat: The Tardis (Doctor Who)

Line drawing of one panel of the Tardis console.  Controls and switches are labelled from 1 to 10


This is from DWM 79. The accompanying text states that, inspired by the Dr Who Technical Manual doing something similar for the 1980s console, the uncredited author(s) have examined the Hartnell and Troughton episodes in order to construct a reference of what all the controls and instruments on the Tardis console do. I can't quite work out to what extent I believe this reconstruction is entirely based on televised episodes. The modern magazine would lovingly reference each deduction, including discussion of any discrepancies and there is none of that here and some of the text doesn't ring any bells with me in terms of things I recall happening in stories. But still, for what it's worth in the above the labels refer to the following:

1. The Audio Unit.
2. Indicator Lights (the function of each one is detailed).
3. Course acceptance Unit. As I understand matters this is some kind of check on whether you've inputed correct destination coordinates.
4. Safety Precaution Switch. An invention of the Doctor's (no less) this stops the Tardis landing anywhere it might get destroyed. I find the concept that a) this does not come as standard in Tardises and b) that it apparently has to be activated after every take off somewhat alarming.
5. Materialization Switch.
6. The Stasis Switch. I confess I have no understanding of the text accompanying this. It seems to have something to do with the idea that the Tardis doesn't dematerialise if only travelling in time - but why you need a switch for that is beyond me.
7. Materialization Switch. Yes, another one. It is not clear what happens if you activate one and not the other.
8. Auto-Log indicator. Lights up if the auto-log has overriden the Navigational Instruments apparently.
9. Navigational Control. Allows you to program coordinates in binary (which rather suggests there are only 128 locations in the whole of time and space).
10. Co-Ordinate Programmer. Apparently the navigational control sets the coordinate from galactic zero while this sets the "normal digital reference". The reason you need both is not clear...

As for Panels 2 to 6... well I may post them sometime.

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