The Age of The Pussyfoot by Frederik Pohl:
Science Fiction Inventions, Technology and Ideas

This is an amazing and prescient novel, set in 2527 A.D. Charles Forrester died in a fire in our time; he was frozen and brought back to life when technology (and his accumulated assets) permitted. Every aspect of life is mediated by Joymakers, remarkable PDAs that really are indispensable personal digital assistants. Great read. (Note that this novel appeared in a shortened version in Galaxy magazine in 1965 and 1966; the quotes are taken from the book version, which appeared in 1969.) Select an invention:

Big Screen Control - right from your personal device
Display content from your personal device on a large shared screen.

Caller Contact List - very early use
A list of callers kept on the phone instrument.

Cellphone Credit Card - mobile phone wallet
Cellphone that can act as a credit card.

Cellphone Tranquilizing Spray
A mild sedative administered automatically by your cellphone.

Cellphone Voice Mail - very early use of concept
Callers speak into their instrument, and the content of the call is stored by the network for the user to replay at will.

Corpsicle - thaw and fix
Cryogenically frozen person who could (hopefully) be revived later.

Death-Reversal Equipment
Brings you back from losing a duel.

Garbage Device
Autonomous garbage collection device.

Interests Profile - an intelligent agent
An intelligent agent; a software program with your personal tastes on file.

Joymaker - the ultimate PDA
A networked personal digital assistant - that really is an assistant.

Networked Personal Device - the backend is more important
The idea that the true power of a mobile device lies in it's backend network capabilities.

Online Employability Profile Testing - get the right job first
An online test that determines the best areas in which you might search for a job.

Online Job Search - via cellphone
Networked assets allow ordinary people to search through nationwide job listings upon providing a short set of qualifications.

Reciprocal Name - cellphone nickname
A nickname or familiar name used to specify a more completely defined full name and telephone number.

Virtual Keyboard
A keyboard that appears at the right moment in game play.

Virtual Kiss (Tactile Net) - affection by wire
A phone-like device that will communicate a kiss in a tactile manner.

Virtual Reality Construct - VR without headgear
A means of projecting a virtual reality experience without special headsets.

Virtual Reality Video Game - very early description
A description of a computer game simulation played in real time as entertainment.

Voice Dialing
Speak the name of the person and call them on the phone.

Voice-Enabled Smartphone - I talk, it listens
A smartphone capable of complete voice-enabled operation.

 

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