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Designer Creates "Euthanasia Roller Coaster" 409

Posted by samzenpus
from the if-you-have-to-go dept.
disco_tracy writes "Lithuanian amusement park worker and current PhD candidate in London's Royal College of Art's Design Interactions department, Julijonas Urbonas, has made a design for a hypothetical coaster that could be the future of humane euthanasia. Urbonas says that it is engineered to give a person a way to die with 'with elegance and euphoria.' From the article: 'The three-minute ride involves a long, slow, climb -- nearly a third of a mile long -- that lifts one up to a height of more than 1,600 feet, followed by a massive fall and seven strategically sized and placed loops. The final descent and series of loops take all of one minute. But the gravitational force -- 10 Gs -- from the spinning loops at 223 miles per hour in that single minute is lethal.'"
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Designer Creates "Euthanasia Roller Coaster"

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  • by The Archon V2.0 (782634) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @04:25PM (#37472216)
    ... and there isn't a thing elegant about it.
    • No, Mr. Bond... I expect you to ride.
    • by morari (1080535)

      Sure there is. I've been bedside and holding the hand of three different people as they expired. Death is about the only elegant part of aging. Keeping people as living vegetables in hospitals and nursing homes isn't elegant. It's greedy and selfish.

      • Sure there is. I've been bedside and holding the hand of three different people as they expired. Death is about the only elegant part of aging.

        I've been there too. Watching the failing struggle to stay awake and aware because, in between stretches of tiredness and confusion, they have moments of absolute clarity where they realize they'll never open their eyes again once they close them.

        Hours later, watching them still breathing slowly but far too slowly to maintain consciousness or even sleep. The body struggles desperately on even after the mind has left, a loved one reduced to little more than a broken automaton. Holding a hand that's only wa

        • by morari (1080535)

          Unfortunately, you can't avoid death. If you want to make it more "elegant", then I would suggest that euthanasia as the obvious choice. There are plenty of methods available that would allow for a quicker death, long before your loved one is laid up in the hospital and barely even aware of their surroundings. :(

          • Unfortunately, you can't avoid death.

            True. But name one person who people say "died elegantly". Peacefully. Violently. Quietly. Heroically. Instantly. Alone. But never gracefully, or artistically, or "in a refined manner".

            Death is an inherently ugly thing. He can tart it up all he wants, it's still someone's life ending and he's describing it like he's found a one-line fix for a particularly annoying software bug. Of course, it's also a goddamn roller coaster, so expecting him to appreciate the plight of the terminally ill is perhaps asking

            • Death is an inherently ugly thing.

              Subjective. As far as I know, there is nothing "inherently ugly" about anything.

        • While I hesitate to comment as I feel I am treading on your grief to do so it really must be said that we will all eventually have to die. Some choose to fight for every last moment that they may spend with their loved ones, others may choose to meet the end sooner than later on their own terms for other reasons, whether fear of a long drawn out ordeal, or what have you. In relation to this I interpreted his comments about elegance to be relative to other potential ends we may face, and a comment on our rig
  • by ColdWetDog (752185) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @04:25PM (#37472224) Homepage

    Too dangerous.

  • Crushed to death.

    I'd rather take the barbiturates, thanks.

    • by supersat (639745)
      High G-forces cut off the brain's oxygen supply, so I suspect you'd die of that long before you'd be crushed to death.
      • by Skidborg (1585365)
        And yet there is that nagging question, what if you survive? You body crushed by g-forces, your brain now a barely functioning vegetable due to blood starvation...
        • by AK Marc (707885)
          10g is not enough to crush you. It's enough to cause the blood to pool in your extremities, depriving your brain of oxygen, but wouldn't otherwise harm your body with any long-term effects.
          • by dudpixel (1429789) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @11:22PM (#37475906)

            The red bull air race has a limit of 12g - indicating that pilots can survive even that much.

            I have witnessed pilots exceed 12g and be disqualified because of it - and the same pilot complained that the 12g limit was stupid. The limit is there to stop pilots from pushing it too far, in a bid to curb "lap" times.

            However, how many super-fit and healthy people would be interested in euthanasia? not many I'd guess.

            • by AK Marc (707885)
              If they had no limits, whoever pulls the most Gs wins. It would be a contest where the loser blacks out and dies, and Red Bull doesn't want to support death sports, so we get a reasonable limit (though higher than I'd consider safe, but that's their call, not mine).
            • by Zironic (1112127)

              You can survive 10g momentarily, what kills you is that it's 10g for an -entire minute- which above poster points out is long enough for your brain to die from oxygen deprivation.

      • Yes, and they do it in an incredibly uncomfortable way. I'd be willing to bet that the person who suggested this has never pulled more than about 2Gs. When the acceleration is enough that it's hard to pump blood up into your head, you experience nausea and lots of small pains. This generally starts mildly at around 4Gs and becomes progressively worse as the force increases.

        Basically, this idea sounds like someone saying 'well, the blood draining out of your brain is quite a relaxing way to die, we shoul

        • When the acceleration is enough that it's hard to pump blood up into your head, you experience nausea and lots of small pains.

          For the more adventurous among you, you can test mild varieties of this yourself by swinging your arm, extended, making circles with your hand.

          Do this at a normal pace, compare that hand to the other, it'll be a fair bit more red.
          Do this faster, and you'll start to feel some of that 'small pains' - it's not entirely unlike when your hand's 'asleep', but more painful.
          Go faster still a

          • Have you ever tried riding a big roller coaster? I guess not.

            Swinging your arm around quickly may indeed be slightly painful. But that is a much higher G-force, well above that which would make you lose consciousness. If your arm is 1 meter long, and you are spinning it around at two revolutions per second (I'm sure you can do more than that), the tips will already be experiencing 15g.

            The only ill effects I've had from high G-forces is tiredness and a slight headache afterwards, never during the event.

        • Re:How nice (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Baloroth (2370816) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @06:01PM (#37473416)
          This was my thought as well. Some acceleration can be fun, but it is very uncomfortable beyond a certain point, and enough to kill you would be extremely painful. You want death to be either non-violent or extremely quick, if possible. This is neither. And several minutes of anticipation? Fuck no. I'll take a morphine OD (which seems painless from what I know of it), if it comes to that.
    • by DarkOx (621550)

      If not crushed to death subjected to cardiovascular stress your body can't cope with, neither sounds fun.

      If you look how Medical doctors who commit suicide do it, barbiturates are their most common method. Which makes sense because doctors have access to drugs so they are more likely to choose drugs, but the fact they select that class of drug, suggests its probably the most comfortable way to end it all. They would be the experts after all..

      • What I've never quite understood is why any kind of drugs is preferable to, say, a .22LR (to prevent it being overly messy) bullet to the head? Surely the latter is instantaneous, and likely much more foolproof in a DIY case than any chemical solution?

        • by icebike (68054)

          What I've never quite understood is why any kind of drugs is preferable to, say, a .22LR (to prevent it being overly messy) bullet to the head? Surely the latter is instantaneous, and likely much more foolproof in a DIY case than any chemical solution?

          Way too many people linger and bleed out (or live) after being shot in the head with small caliber weapons. (Gabby Gifford).

          You want it messy, its the only way you can be sure you don't suffer. Who cares about the mess?

        • by retchdog (1319261)

          it's still messy and a bit fiddly to secure the gun in such a way that it can't slip or be pulled away instinctively, and also to aim for the brain stem. the cheapest solution is probably to shave one's head, duct tape an L bracket to the barrel, and then use a lot of duct tape to secure the upper bar of the L bracket to the back of the shaved noggin (use a mirror to ensure aim).

          at any rate, a gun's not going to be totally clean anyway and, as others have said: the cleaner, the less reliable. i'd say, just

    • by Zerth (26112)

      Or a tent with a nitrogen/oxygen feed that gradually turns to all nitrogen.

      If you don't mind the waste of a scarce resource or releasing a potent greenhouse gas, you may substitute helium or sulfur hexafluoride for a cheap laugh.

  • This Julijonas Urbonas must be Le Chuck in disguise.....
    Only sad he left out the lava thingie to cut the costs.
  • I used to have nightmares that played out almost exactly that way. Also, who's going to test this and tell us they had a good time?

    • by dudpixel (1429789)

      on the other hand, what if you did actually start to enjoy the beginning of the rollercoaster...and because you were experiencing enjoyment - wanted to change your mind?

      That would suck.

  • by md65536 (670240) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @04:28PM (#37472262)

    I have a design for a "ride" that involves a long, slow climb up a large staircase, followed by a massive fall and one strategically placed sidewalk. I think it's the future of euthanasia!

  • I'm not sure a high-powered death-coaster is going to qualify as "humane" for anybody who isn't a bit of an adrenaline junky prior to their planned demise.

    It lacks some of the sculptural potential; but I have to imagine that there are dozens to hundreds of possibilities taken from the anesthesiologists' "Don't do this or the patient will die." course that are at least as euphoric, quite as lethal, and not so disquieting to the inner ear...
  • So... (Score:4, Funny)

    by aardvarkjoe (156801) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @04:29PM (#37472284)
    If you're in a wheelchair, do they let you jump to the front of the line?
  • by Dunbal (464142) * on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @04:29PM (#37472294)
    Who is going to clean up all the excrement when death-induced sphincter relaxation occurs in conjunction with high G's? Eww, I don't want to ride on that - regular coasters are bad enough.
  • and being 'Renewed'
  • I hope it receives regular safety inspections, and they shut the ride down if it gets too worn.

    ~Loyal

  • The DEVASTATOR. Only at Thrill World!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fU14VqcPIDo [youtube.com]

  • by Dragon Bait (997809) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @04:32PM (#37472348)

    Obviously this is just a [stupid] publicity stunt, but most of the people that I know that would (would have) opted for euthanasia were elderly. They wouldn't be the type to board a roller coaster.

    They do need an option that is better than putting a gun to the head.

    • It's a bit dark to think about, but perhaps some terminally ill children might opt for euthanasia, and they would be the right age group for this kind of thing.
      • by syousef (465911)

        It's a bit dark to think about, but perhaps some terminally ill children might opt for euthanasia, and they would be the right age group for this kind of thing.

        They're not in a position, legally or morally, to understand what they're doing and give consent to end their lives.

    • by blair1q (305137)

      Put them on a planet spinning at the speed of sound, going around in circles until they die.

      Oh wait...

  • by decipher_saint (72686) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @04:32PM (#37472362) Homepage

    So if a Carnie screws up, do people survive?

  • by Antisyzygy (1495469) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @04:32PM (#37472364)
    Reminds me of Soylent Green. A pleasant experience followed by death, then your body is liquified and turned into green crackers.
  • Someone has to drag the corpses out of the roller coaster, and that isn't going to be pretty. I think a nice long free-fall with a parachute programmed to hit an active volcano would be a bit more creative. They get to enjoy a blissful free-fall, gentle descent and quick cremation. Best of all, no mess and no fuss.

    Sounds a bit like 'the solution', perhaps?

    • by Sancho (17056) *

      That's an option for people with a brain cloud.

  • For everyone else, it's:

    1. Get on coaster.
    2. Break a hip/rib; dislocate a shoulder on turn 1.
    3. Be in horrible, horrible pain until passing out from pain and/or dying from acceleration.

    Awesome. I wouldn't even call this a nice thought experiment--it's just stupid.

  • How long until they try to sell overpriced souvenir photos to the family?

  • by gurps_npc (621217) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @04:40PM (#37472492) Homepage
    This is obviously a bit of a joke, and not even that funny. I like the original version better:

    I want to die in my sleep, like my grandfather. Not screaming in terror like the people in the back seat of his car.

  • I wonder if the coaster car can withstand such force without breaking apart.

  • I had always imagined that the most euphoric way to die would be fulfilling some religious or quasi-religious mission. So if you hype yourself up to, say, mass killing for your cause and the prospect of a glorious afterlife, the seconds before you hit the detonator must feel wonderful.

    Fortunately, I'm not a thrill-seeker, I don't like killing people, and - most importantly of all - I don't think random attacks on civilians for political causes are likely to be effective. Especially not since the IRA has mov

    • Back when I was younger and more emo I thought that way too. I could never decide on what would be the best target though: a mosque? a church? the stock exchange? parliament house? an embassy?

      Needless to say I never tried it...

  • This roller coaster has not been created. It is has been proposed. This is a slight difference there.

  • I bet this ride would be huge with young people in the far east.

  • The best euthanasia would be being trampled to death by a harem of attractive woman.

    Might need something work for women and people who don't like women; and its not as painless, but it'll be awesome.

    • by NitroWolf (72977)

      The best euthanasia would be being trampled to death by a harem of attractive woman.

      Might need something work for women and people who don't like women; and its not as painless, but it'll be awesome.

      I'm thinking this is fairly easy to accomplish. Just go marry several attractive women, promise them things their heart desires, gather them all in one room and tell them it was a joke and you married all of them at the same time just to be a dick. I suspect trampling is going to be in your future.

  • I have an easier and cheaper alternative...once they embark on a roller coaster ride for an attempted suicide, they will go on a small trip on a roller coaster small enough for children to go on, but at random intervals and random locations, you will have specific neck level guillotines (adjustable based on height of the person).

    As the person rides, they will encounter at last second a blade that whips out from nowhere, and slices the head clean off....if the person is willing to go through a roller coaster

  • They can set it up right next to the Tooth Chipper & the Screamatorium!
  • anyone else remember the LOBO comic about the suicide theme park?
  • This is what Slashdot has become?
    How to Fix Slashdot.
    1. Bring back Cmdr Taco
    2. Fire samzenpus.

  • "Lithuanian amusement park worker and current PhD candidate in London's Royal College of Art's Design Interactions department, Julijonas Urbonas,

    ... one hell of a commute.

  • Well, for me this wouldn't work, because roller coasters activate my hyper-barf reflex. So, not only would I know I'm about to die, I'd be getting covered in my own vomit in the process.

  • Nitrogen asphyxiation is probably the best way to go. The body doesn't realize when it's running out of oxygen. It only senses a high level of carbon dioxide. Therefore, inhaling only nitrogen will result in death but there won't be any gasping or discomfort because the body thinks that everything is just groovy.

  • by Caerdwyn (829058)

    Wow, there are people here actually taking this seriously. For those people I have a bridge, some prime bottom-land in Louisiana, a derivative-based mutual fund, and homeopathic medicine to sell you.

    For the rest of us: Bah! This is old news! John Cleese had a better proposal. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e2PyeXRwhCE [youtube.com]

  • What do they do if people have an epiphany in the first couple of minutes of the ride and want to live? Ejector seats?
  • Where was this guy when Hitler needed him?

  • but is it safe?
  • by HTH NE1 (675604) on Wednesday September 21, 2011 @05:23PM (#37472976)

    The guests arrive in the entrance hall here, are carried along the corridor on a conveyor belt in extreme comfort and past murals depicting Mediterranean scenes, towards the rotating knives. The last twenty feet of the corridor are heavily soundproofed. The blood pours down these chutes and the mangled flesh slurps into these large containers. None of your blood caked on the walls and flesh flying out of the windows inconveniencing passers-by with this one.

  • by cstacy (534252) on Thursday September 22, 2011 @03:00AM (#37476862)

    Didn't the recent episode "The Tip Of The Zoidberg" conclude with a roller coaster designed to help the Professor suicide?

    And what about "Mr. Bonecrusher" in the Chevy Chase movie "Nothing But Trouble"?

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