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Here's an idea for a science oriented character/node benefit.
A little automaton that serves as a little tool holder and assistant when crafting. This could be a functional pet.
The thing I disliked about pets in WoW was that they never did anything interesting aside from a few things they did later in the game's life cycle basically being poke'mon.
If you could craft a worker bot as a familiar I think having it help you craft would be very cool. Whether its a buff or a mini game when crafting where you have to do something synced to an animation etc. Something to make your attachment to the pet even more to give you an RP hook or something tangible to go off of other then the little bugger following you around all the time.
This could work with different pets too. For instance right now you can order a hawk pet. I don't see why that hawk pet couldn't help collect small game and bring it back to you instead of you looting it manually. Just some small effect that having the pet would benefit you with.