One of my favourite SR subgenres is that of "steampunk." I love Neal Stephenson's The Diamond Age and Stephen Baxter's The Time Ships.
Recently there have been a number of steampunk style casemods. These are great.
Part of the idea of steampunk is a celebration of the mechanisms within the machine itself.
There is also romance. The "style" of Steampunk, as exemplified by Alan Moore's depiction of The Nautilus in his The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen series.
This "Bi-Orbital Spectral Audiometer" from Professor Emilio Zanturas is an example of a Steampunk style machine where the romance and style is more dominant than the fundamental mechanisms, which are hidden from view.
Here is another rather lovely Nautilus-inspired movie theatre from the designers of Tokyo Disneyland:
Combining this celebration of the mechanism with Victorian-era materials like brass, riveting, mahogany panelling, and a bespoke finish has lead to some amazing creations, all lovingly catalogued by the superlative Boing Boing.
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