Foundation by Isaac Asimov:
Science Fiction Inventions, Technology and Ideas

Space opera at its finest, from a man who really knew how to put a story together. Fast-paced story with interesting characters; its a different sort of story if you've only read Gibson and Sterling. You need to know what psychohistory is, so start reading. (Also, take a look at the inventive ideas from Asimov's second and third books in the trilogy - Foundation and Empire and Second Foundation.) Select an invention:

Agricultural World

Anti-Spying Device

Calculator Pad - grandfather of the pocket calculator

Directional Ticket - the ticket guides you

Force-Field Penknife - origin of the Lightsaber?

Gravitic Repulsion Elevator - going up

Jump Through Hyperspace - is travel through hyperspace possible?

Nuclear Shears

Personal Capsule - for your eyes only

Personal Force-Shield - earliest mention?

Plasto-Textile

Pocket Nucleo-Bulb - better than those LED flashlights

Psychohistory

Spy Beam

Static Field

Trantor - planet city

Ultrawave Relay (or Hyperwave Relay) - first use of FTL communication

 

Technovelgy.com is devoted to the creative inventions of science fiction authors and movie makers. Look for the Science Fiction Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary of Science Fiction Inventions, the Timeline of Science Fiction Inventions, or see what's New.
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