Dictionary of Media Terms in Science Fiction
(Technovelgy items at top: skip down to News)


Author (Publication Date)

Advertising Airship
A dirigible capable of reproducing full-color video ads on its sides.

Ridley Scott (1982)
Airplane Window Ads - ads on clouds
An airplane window that allows you to - see advertisements!

Frederik Pohl (w/CM Kornbluth) (1952)
Atmospheric Advertising - write it on the clouds
A means of mass advertising to cities and countries.

Jules Verne (1889)
Creditor Jet-Balloon - bane of debtors
A small, hovering device that hounds debtors.

Philip K. Dick (1964)
Full-Motion Building Advertising Facade - a new life awaits
An advertising display that covers an entire skyscraper; it provides full-motion video to onlookers.

Ridley Scott (1982)
Homeostatic Newspaper - a homeopape
An autonomous news-gathering and publishing entity; abbreviated as homeopape.

Philip K. Dick (1953)
Homotropic News Vending Machine
An autonomous news-selling robot, that was able to specifically seek out human beings.

Philip K. Dick (1963)
Live News - prediction of newscasts
The modern concept of a news broadcast.

Jules Verne (1889)
Living Advertising Character - meet Mr. Presto
Modifying an ordinary person to create a living likeness of a company's brand symbol or character.

Alfred Bester (1956)
Mediaglyphic - animated symbols
Animated symbols to help those who haven't bothered to learn to read in a multimedia age.

Neal Stephenson (1995)
Frank Herbert (1965)
Minority Report Ads (Biometric Personalized Ads)
Advertisements that speak directly to the consumer in public settings.

Steven Spielberg (2002)
Mobile Advertisements - airborne adverts
Advertisements presented in mid-air in public spaces.

Alan Dean Foster (2006)
News Roundup - better than Tivo
A device that presents brief story outlines, any of which can be chosen to find details.

Robert Heinlein (1942)
Newspad Electronic Newspaper
An electronic version of a newspaper.

Arthur C. Clarke (1968)
Padloid - National Enquirer on your tablet PC
A tawdry news publication on a PDA, or notepad, device.

John Varley (1992)
Permanent Skywriting
Non-wispy skywriting letters.

Alan Nelson (1953)
Personal Interest Profile (PIP) - invention of Google Alerts
A set of topics about which you would like to hear the latest news; known today as Google News Alerts.

Arthur C. Clarke (1978)
Personalized News
First reference to news that is customized to the needs of each individual subscriber.

Hugo Gernsback (1911)
Projection Commercials - 3D advertisements
A three-dimensional advertisement that is placed in your path in a public place like a bar.

Alfred Bester (1974)
Projection Rig - envy of presenters
A portable holographic projector.

William Gibson (1988)
Recorded News - Tivo for radio in 1889
This is the basic idea behind Tivo and VCRs.

Jules Verne (1889)
Reporting Machine
A robotic roving reporter.

Philip K. Dick (1964)
Speaker Chips - talking books
Integrated circuit chips placed in books; they could read the book and advertise it.

Greg Bear (2003)
Subliminal Billboards
Enormous outdoor billboards that are totally blank - or are they?

J.G. Ballard (1963)
A device that printed out a copy of today's newspaper.

H. Beam Piper (1961)
William Gibson (1988)
Vat Meat (Albert) - live shawarma
Meat grown in a vat.

James Schmitz (1951)
Video-Manicuring Program
Manipulates live video images in real time.

Bruce Sterling (1985)

Related Science Fiction in the News

'Facetime Facelift' Beautifies Video Chats
Always look your best - on Facetime.
(re: Bruce Sterling, 3/13/2012 )
Meeting Wendy Of Wendy's
Wendy of Wendys meet Rondald of McDonald's.
(re: Alfred Bester, 11/17/2011 )
Narrative Science And Phil Dick's Homeostatic Newspaper
'The structure... was once a great homeostatic newspaper, the New York Times.'
(re: Philip K. Dick, 9/9/2011 )
BookTrack Adds Sound To Books
I really don't think this is a very good idea. Readers?
(re: Philip K. Dick, 8/26/2011 )
Hey WikiLeaks! Where's My Shockwave Rider App?
John Brunner had a pretty good idea about this some forty-five years ago.
(re: John Brunner, 11/30/2010 )
Robots In Advertising Mostly CGI, Fortunately
'Robot-salesmen were everywhere, gesturing, pleading, shrilling.' Thanks for warning us, PKD.
(re: Philip K. Dick, 11/18/2010 )
Computational Journalism The Homeostatic Newspaper
Philip K. Dick has already plumbed the depths of what computers can do for us in creating (and peddling) the news.
(re: Philip K. Dick, 7/12/2010 )
Robot Journalist Provides Autonomic News Coverage
Philip K. Dick, your autonomic interviewer is just about ready.
(re: Philip K. Dick, 3/25/2010 )
Targeted Audio Ads On Your Cell Phone
Your cell phone is a radio, after all.
(re: J.G. Ballard, 2/26/2010 )
Nexus One Not Ballardian Free Ad Phone
J.G. Ballard gave us a very good idea what this would be like in 1963.
(re: J.G. Ballard, 1/8/2010 )
Commercial Flies Sport Tiny Banner Ads
Phil Dick must be rolling over in his grave; buzzing advertisements are something I could live without.
(re: Philip K. Dick, 10/30/2009 )
'Niiu' Custom Newspaper Is PKD's Homeopape
You say 'niiu' but I say 'pape - homeostatic newspaper, that is.
(re: Philip K. Dick, 10/23/2009 )
Jail Sells Visitation Monitor Ad Space
Should jails force you to watch advertisements in return for speaking to your jailed relative or friend? Well, they're already doing it in Florida.
(re: Various, 10/10/2009 )
ag4's Bayer 'Media Facade' Like Blade Runner
Striking video of an entire building facade turned into an advertising space. Although not yet running ads describing your new life in an off-world colony, it's very science-fictional.
(re: Ridley Scott, 10/9/2009 )
Digi-Novel Book-Movie-Website
Let's try all of our media in every combination we can think of. This is one try.
(re: Various, 10/2/2009 )
'Minority Report' Castrol Ads On Britain's Digital Billboards
John Anderton! We see your car now, too. Britain's Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency sells their database as well as their car monitoring network to advertisers.
(re: Stephen Spielberg, 9/29/2009 )
Sci Fi Channel To Make Money Ender's Game-Style
'We may be young, but we're not powerless. We play by their rules long enough and it becomes our game.'
(re: Orson Scott Card, 6/3/2008 )
Billboard Camera Pictures You Watching
The best part is, the guy in the picture shows you where to spray-paint yourself some reasonable privacy.
(re: Stephen Spielberg, 6/2/2008 )
Smart Sign Watches You Drive By
Advertisers want to get a bit closer to you with these sensor-enhanced digital billboards.
(re: J.G. Ballard, 3/26/2007 )
Put Your Ads Where Space Begins
These ads are taken to the edge of space, but can't quite be viewed by space tourists.
(re: Alan Nelson, 1/19/2007 )
Digital Billboards Worth Billions
This part of our science-fictional future I can really live without; you'll pay money for unmarked, non-ad-saturated nature.
(re: J.G. Ballard, 1/17/2007 )
Electronic Erasable Paper - Xerox Seeks E-Palimpsest
Xerox is still looking for the perfect palimpsest - eraseable electronic reusable paper.
(re: Greg Bear, 11/27/2006 )
NextFest 2006 Devices, Stories And Pictures
NextFest had so many cool things that I'm still digging into my pile of digital photos and writing stories.
(re: Various, 11/2/2006 )
CustomFlix News Clips On Custom-Made DVD
Custom media choices arrive even earlier than Jules Verne predicted.
(re: Jules Verne, 7/15/2006 )
Ad Saturation Approaches 100 Percent
Do you think there might be too many advertisements in your life? Other people don't think so.
(re: Various, 5/12/2006 )
French Billboards Call Your Cellphone
Now, didn't I see a movie in which the billboards and store windows tried to speak to you personally?
(re: Steven Spielberg, 5/8/2006 )
A-170 Video Lightsign Airship Brings Blade Runner Blimp To Sky Near You
The world of Bladerunner draws closer - the low-flying video ad blimps are ready 13 years ahead of schedule.
(re: Ridley Scott, 5/4/2006 )
Siemens Working On Stephenson's 'Mediatron'
Siemens has lowered the price of thin, flexibles displays enough to bring the mediatron, a flexible, updatable newspaper, into reality.
(re: Neal Stephenson, 10/14/2005 )
Blinkx.tv And Heinlein's Newsbox
Robert Heinlein wrote about something similar two generations ago.
(re: Robert Heinlein, 10/3/2005 )
Sky Billboards In Fact And Fiction
The Federal Aviation Administration intends to amend its regulations; the FAA wants to make sure it can enforce a law that prohibits "obtrusive" advertising in zero gravity.
(re: Jules Verne, 5/20/2005 )
Product RFID Tags Now Play Jingles
A computer science student from Durlach in Germany has worked out a way to store a tune on the radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags now attached to many consumer goods.
(re: Greg Bear, 5/4/2005 )
Grand Odyssey Futurecast System - You Star!
Space Child Adventure Grand Odyssey, an animated film showing at the Aichi Expo 2005, has a very special star - you! Visitors to the Mitsui-Toshiba Pavilion get a full-face high resolution digital scan; these faces are edited into that perform
(re: Ray Bradbury, 3/26/2005 )
Technovelgy Top Stories For 2004
This past year, Technovelgy reported on hundreds of stories about real-life events that were presaged by science fiction stories. The following ten stories showed the most remarkable correspondence between sf and reality in 2004.
(re: Various, 1/18/2005 )
Interactive Billboards Use SMS
Interactive billboards designed by Ogilvy use SMS to give passers-by a chance to win a Ford Fiesta in Belgium. SF writers have long predicted the use of intrusive advertisements in our everyday environment.
(re: Frederik Pohl, 7/23/2004 )
Processing Three-Dimensional Video In Real Time
You may have seen the Matrix-like replays during the last Super Bowl, in which the sportscasters could freeze the image, rotate it to another viewpoint, and then continue with the action. Wouldn't it be great if we, the viewers, could use this featur
(re: Robert Heinlein, 7/9/2004 )
Movie Moguls Put Toe In Delphi Pool
Movie studio executives have found a new way to predict how well a particular movie will fare. The method was originally proposed by John Brunner in 1976.
(re: John Brunner, 6/8/2004 )
Sprint RFID Loyalty Card Triggers Minority Report-Style Ads
Sprint has developed two RFID applications based on customer loyalty cards that can identify a customer as he or she walks through a store, triggering the appearance of a customized computer avatar on a nearby screen.
(re: Philip K. Dick, 5/24/2004 )
SenseCam Camera: Your Personal Black Box Update
SenseCam is a Microsoft research toy, a badge-sized camera that can capture up to 2000 VGA images per day. It also monitors movement, light level and temperature. It's been compared to the airplane "black box."
(re: John Barnes, 4/3/2004 )
Digital Press Corps Gadget Freaks
The New York Times today published a story on how wireless laptops and digital tape recorders and other high tech gadgets are quickening the pace of news reporting.
(re: John Varley, 1/29/2004 )






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