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"There's a tendency to think that maybe if we can just throw enough hardware at the AI problem, then evolution can take care of the rest. Certainly that's how God went about making us."
- Rudy Rucker

Diaspar Memory  
  The city's memory could store works of art, and reproduce them upon request.  

It was the custom of the city's artists - and everyone in Diaspar was an artist at some time or another - to display their current production along side of the moving ways, so that the passers-by could admire their work. In this manner, it was usually only a few days before the entire population had critically examined any noteworthy creation, and also expressed views upon it. The resulting verdict, recorded automatically by opinion-sampling devices which no one had ever been able to suborn or deceive - and there had been enough attempts - decided the fate of the masterpiece. If there was a sufficiently affirmative vote, its matrix would go into the memory of the city so that anyone who wished, at any future date, could possess a reproduction indistinguishable from the original.
From The City and the Stars, by Arthur C. Clarke.
Published by Unknown in 1956
Additional resources -

I note in passing that Clarke sees no future for intellectual property law in Diaspar...

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  More Ideas and Technology from The City and the Stars
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