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.

Credibility Rating
How believable are your blog posts? your emails? your tweets?

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

Dazer
A person who learned biofeedback techniques to float on his own endorphins.

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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