Science Fiction Dictionary
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"Concepts of religion may now be goals of science and engineering."
- Bart Kosko

Laputa  
  A floating island or rock in the air.  

Laputa's means of propulsion and altitude control is detailed below.

I turned back and perceived a vast Opaque Body between me and the sun, moving forwards towards the island; it appeared to be about two Miles high, and hid the Sun six or seven minutes.

... the Reader can hardly conceive my Astonishment, to behold an Island in the Air, inhabited by Men, who are able (as it should seem) to raise, or sink, or put into a Progressive Motion, as they pleased.

Technovelgy from Gulliver's Travels, by Jonathan Swift.
Published by Benjamin Motte in 1726
Additional resources -

Here is an early illustration:


(The island of Laputa)

The island's altitude and progress is determined by magnetic levitation:

At the Centre of the Island there is a Chasm about fifty Yards in Diameter... The greatest Curiosity, upon which the fate of the Island depends, is a Loadstone of a prodigious size, in shape resembling a Weaver's Shuttle. It is in length six Yards, and in the thickest part at least three Yards over. This Magnet is sustained by a very strong Axle of Adamant passing through its middle, upon which it plays, and is poised os exactly that the weakest Hand can turn it...

By means of this Loadstone, the Island is made to rise and fall, and move from one place to another. For, with respect to that part of the Earth over which the Monarch presides, the Stone is endured at one of its sides with attractive Power, and at the other with a repulsive. Upon placing the Magnet erect with its attracting end toward the Earth, the Island descends; but when the repelling Extremity points downwards, the Island mounts directly upwards. When the Position of the Stone is obliqe, the Motion of the Island is too.

By this oblique Motion the Island is conveyed to different Parts of the Monarch's Dominions.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 1 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Gulliver's Travels
  More Ideas and Technology by Jonathan Swift
  Tech news articles related to Gulliver's Travels
  Tech news articles related to works by Jonathan Swift

Articles related to Living Space
LiquidView Ersatz Windows, ala Philip K. Dick
Solar House Concept Unfolds Solar Panels Like A Flower
San Fran's Tiny Homeless
Rotating House in Bosnia

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Science Fiction Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

Science Fiction Timeline
1600-1899
1900-1939
1940's   1950's
1960's   1970's
1980's   1990's
2000's   2010's

Science Fiction in the News

Ulm Sleep Pods For The Homeless
'The lid lifted and she crawled inside...'

Prophetic Offers Lucid Dreaming Halo With Morpheus-1 AI
''Leads trail away from insertion points on her face and wrist... to a lucid dreamer...'

More Like A Tumblebug Than A Motorcycle
'It is about the size and shape of a kitchen stool, gyro-stabilized on a single wheel...'

Tesla Camera-Only Vision Predicted In 1930's SF
'By its means, the machine can see.'

First Ever Proof Of Water On Asteroids
'Yes, strangely enough there was still sufficient water beneath the surface of Vesta.'

Aptera Solar EV More Stylish Than Heinlein Steel Tortoise
'When confronted by hills, or rough terrain, it did not stop, but simply slowed until the task demanded equaled its steady power output.'

Gigantic Space Sunshade Would Fight Global Warming
'...the light of the sun had been polarized by two crossed fields so that no radiation could pass.'

Untethered Spacewalk's 50th Anniversary
'But that space walk of mine wasn't so very amazing.'

ESA Designs Huge Inflatable Moonbase
'It was like being inside a balloon; indeed, that was exactly where he was.'

AlphaGarden Robot Cares For Gardens Better Than Humans
'...a simple clock-set servok with pipe and hose arms.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Science Fiction Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.