Earth by David Brin:
Science Fiction Inventions, Technology and Ideas

Fascinating novel of a future earth set in 2038. Among the many interesting features of this novel is the constant presence of a global data network that sounds like it will be ready long before 2038. Excellent read. Select an invention:

Anti-Onc Cream - cancer remedy
An ointment used to cure skin cancers.

Autosecretary (Autosec) - clipping service for the net
A software agent able to accept your query and then seach the public net for related information.

Bee Zapper - Star Wars for bugs
A laser-based insect remover.

Citizen Journalism - silence dogood lives!
The notion that ordinary people can make use of technological tools like cellphone cameras and the Internet to provide information.

Data-Retrieval Programs - ferrets, hounds, foxes and badgers
Programs that searched the Net for specific information.

Dozer - cadge some O2
A person with extreme susceptibility to the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide.

E-Document Distribution - step up to the kiosk
A method of wirelessly distributing a document to a large group of people in an ad hoc setting.

EmilyPost - checks for flames
An autonomous worm that searches the Net for lack of courtesy.

Filter Program - live in your own world
Using programs to filter Internet results; a person need see only what they want to see.

Garbage Mine - there's gold in them heaps
The idea that recycling can spawn entirely new industries.

Genetic Ark - conserve the genome
Enormous, multi-habitat enclosed spaces, used to conserve the animal gene pool.

Lawyer Program - AI goes to the dark side
Software that could listen to legal argument.

Magnus-Effect Ambulance - sidewise force
A vehicle that can hover and fly using the Magnus Effect.

Mammontelephas - baby mammoths
A 'mammoth' resurrected from the genes of the original.

Oxygen Hip Flask - just a quick nip
A small, portable source of pure oxygen for breathing.

Personal Cache - a digital safety deposit box
An online data repository used to store personal data.

Portable Ident-Plate - quick prints
A small, thin device that will capture biometric data from a person's finger.

Predictions Registry - if you're sure
An organization that keeps track of predictions made by individuals.

Reading Plaque - ultrathin display
A tablet-sized display for reading.

Sonomagnetic Fabric - listen with your shirt
Cloth that gathers sound energy.

Subvocal Input Device - under your breath
Attached sensors read nerve signals to determine what the user will say next.

Sunshade-Photocell Collector
A fanciful design for a device that gathers solar energy.

True-Vu Lenses (Goggles) - sneak a peek
Lenses that are worn as goggles, allowing the user to both see and record what is being viewed.

Vivisector - software deconstruction
A program that takes another computer program apart, while it's running, to see what it does.

 

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