The future is always moving forward. While technology is getting closer to the fictional future depicted in movies—with self-driving cars and spaceships to Mars slowly becoming a reality—speed isn’t always the name of the game. The DLSU Eco Car Team (DLSU ECT) is one such example of this, being a team of young inventors who aren’t looking to create the fastest possible vehicle.
Coco Martin McFly (IV, MEEMTE), the supreme leader of the DLSU ECT, shares that the team has been working on something “amazing”. “I’m gonna create something no one is ready for. Something the kids—the future generations—are gonna love,” he says. He hints that the next DLSU Eco Car will come in, and from, the future.
A mysterious message
McFly recalls the story of receiving the plans last year, on the day of an unusual incident. On April 1 of last year, the fire alarm rang at the ECT’s lab at St. Miguel Hall. Students reported a slight tremor from the building, and a harsh bright light bursting from its windows. Those taking classes in the building were also affected by the sudden event.
“I blinked my eyes once, then suddenly, my professor was at the other side of the classroom,” testifies Emmet Einstein (I, BS-PHY). “I didn’t hear him explain what was on the board!”
While students were asked to evacuate from the premises, Mcfly was the first to rush onto the sence.
“I’m always the first one to arrive at the work area [at St. Miguel Hall]. I [usually] start the day with cleaning up some parts and notes left around during the night before,” McFly recalls. “This time, it was different—I heard a fire alarm and rushed there. When I got there, it was like a tornado was let loose in the area!”
The entire place was in shambles. Fluorescent bulbs dangled from flimsy wires, sparks crackled from all over the room, and papers flew around the room, searching for a place to settle. However, amid the chaos of the wrecked lab, what struck McFly the most were the tire tracks that were left on the floor.
The tire tracks led to a wall, but rather than seeing the Eco Car totalled, the wall had not a single scuf mark and the vehicle remained unmoved—with only an entrepreneurial bazaar file organizer left on the hood. “It was open, and what was inside was just unbelievable,” McFly exclaimed.
The incident wasn’t soon forgotten by most students, but the way the DLSU ECT worked afterward, it was as though nothing had happened. Everyone seemed invigorated by the promise of a new project, their excitement spurred on by newly acquired blueprints, signed with a note that said, “Gotchu, dudebroparechongs. Don’t forget to pass it back when you’re done. See you in the future.”
“Yeah, we were all confused as hell,” McFly admits. “But I don’t know, there was something about the handwriting; it looked like the kind of ugly chicken scratch that could come from an engineer’s hand…I felt like I could trust this guy.”
No one could have predicted it then, but the incident paved the way for DLSU ECT’s success almost exactly one year later.
Back to the future—or rather, to the present day of April 2020—the DLSU ECT has done it; they’ve successfully built a version of the Eco Car designed to travel across time. “It’s the kind of stuff you’d think could only exist in movies,” McFly says, shaking his head. “I can’t believe it’s actually here with us right now.”
Outtatime in present time
The car now being ready to be showcased to the world, DLSU ECT proudly presented the sleek vehicle at Green Court in front of a massive crowd of curious onlookers. Brandishing brushed stainless steel panels and upward-swinging doors, the car stood out, like a bird ready to soar among bleak, bland rust buckets. McFly, lying by his side on the roof of the car, kicked the presentation into action. “Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to introduce Outtatime—a car back from the future.”
In the blink of an eye, McFly launched himself off the roof of the car, breaking out the renegade dance, the engine of the car consequently rumbling in the background. “The revolutionary car is fueled by the raw power of TikTok,” he explained. “Who needs keys? All a driver has to do is to start doing the renegade to get going.”
“Is it a cringey design choice? Absolutely,” admits Hemet Moreno, project advisor of the DLSU ECT, in an interview with The LuhSallian. “Will it date the car significantly? Of course. However, anyone who knows anything about quantum technology understands that a single second of TikTok contains horsepower that scales to the billions. It was the only reasonable choice for a project this ambitious.”
In order to capitalize on the power of TikTok, McFly explained that the car can be used with or without a steering wheel, saying that the alternative to using the steering wheel are robotic sleeves for the driver’s arms. “If you want to drive without the wheel, you’ll have to do different TikTok dance crazes to have it moving, McFly said. “This feature is pretty advanced though, so I would advise that only veteran TikTokers can utilize this feature.”
The car can also be summoned via smartphone; the owner can decide the pick-up location and date, and the car will drive itself there, no matter the place or the time. McFly elaborated that this feature “makes transportation a lot safer as it avoids the cause of most of today’s accidents, which is human error.”
Murmurs from the crowd began to increase in volume, a mix of questions and exhilarated expressions. “Things will certainly change around here,” McFly added, a cheeky smirk forming on his face as he catered to the raucous crowd. “I haven’t even told you all the best part. This car has the ability to travel through time.”
No need for roads
“Just like the tagline of our University, the future begins here!” McFly exclaimed as he climbed into Outtatime. The car revved into gear, its wheels rapidly grounding the pavement before it burst into action.
The Eco Car accelerated out of Green Court, then drifted out of Castro St. With the momentum from the drifting, the tiny car picked up speed along Taft Ave. Just before the car crashed into several students crossing to Velasco Gate, the vehicle vanished into thin air, disappearing in a loud clap of thunder. Outtatime disappeared, leaving only burned tire marks.
Weeks after Outtatime’s debut, the Eco Car has caused quite the commotion among the DLSU community, with a number of students inspired by the phenomenon they had witnessed. Anthony S. Tark (I, MEEMTE) was one such student left in awe.
“I thought it was impossible. It’s more than a one out of 14 million chance that it could work, and McFly did it!” he says, sharing that his future thesis project may take inspiration from the Eco Car. “It’s gonna be 3,000 times better than Outtatime!”
As of press time, Outtatime and its driver have yet to be seen on campus, or even in this time period. The DLSU ECT will now resume business as normal, having squandered a year’s worth of work in losing Outtatime; nevertheless, McFly’s example will not be soon forgotten. Wherever the wily DLSU ECT leader is now, the Lasallian community surely eagerly anticipates his return, riveted by the prospect of what he may bring when he comes back from the future.