Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"I'm a fairly visual thinker. In doing science, I think in terms of pictures of things happening, and then do the mathematics."
- Gregory Benford

Navicloud Custom Debinder  
  A machine that pulls books apart and scans the contents.  

This is one of my favorites from this excellent book. Here's the problem (and it may sound familiar): how can you scan the entire contents of a library?

In this excerpt, Robert walks into a university library, expecting to see the usual stacks.

Tiny flecks of white floated and swirled in the column of light. Snowflakes? But one landed on his hand: a fleck of paper.

And now the ripping buzz of the saw was still louder, and there was also the sound of a giant vacuum cleaner...

Brrrap! A tree shredder!

Ahead of him, everything was empty bookcases, skeletons. Robert went to the end of the aisle and walked toward the noise. The air was a fog of floating paper dust. In the fourth aisle, the space between the bookcases was filled with a pulsing fabric tube. The monster worm was brightly lit from within. At the other end, almost twenty feet away, was the worm's maw - the source of the noise... The raging maw was a "Navicloud custom debinder." The fabric tunnel that stretched out behind it was a "camera tunnel..." The shredded fragments of books and magazines flew down the tunnel like leaves in a tornado, twisting and tumbling. The inside of the fabric was stiched with thousands of tiny cameras. The shreds were being photographed again and again, from every angle and orientation, till finally the torn leaves dropped into a bin just in front of Robert.

From Rainbows End, by Vernor Vinge.
Published by Tor in 2006
Additional resources -

Once the entire book was photographed, sophisticated optical character recognition programs went to work, picking out the characters and words on each page. Finally, the machine's AI reconstructed each book and reconstituted every chapter.

Another book "saved" for the 'net.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 0 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Rainbows End
  More Ideas and Technology by Vernor Vinge
  Tech news articles related to Rainbows End
  Tech news articles related to works by Vernor Vinge

Navicloud Custom Debinder-related news articles:
  - Anti-Shredder Computer Versus Stasi Secret Police
  - Book-Scanning ScanRobot Neater Than Navicloud Custom Debinder
  - Scanner Could Let You 'Rip' Books

Articles related to Culture
FlyZoo Robot Hotel By Alibaba
Implanted Memories Provide Songs To Birds
Google Commits To Fighting Deepfakes
Mindar The Robot Buddhist Priest Offers A Blessing

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

More News

Entire Planet Modeled In New MS Flight Sim
'CIC uses [it] to keep track of every bit of spatial information that it owns...'

FlyZoo Robot Hotel By Alibaba
'... hotels that specialized in non-human service.'

Implanted Memories Provide Songs To Birds
Finches can't tell the difference.

Robot Tuna Swims As Fast As Nature's Tuna
'With one fluid motion, it surged forward, plunged, and was gone.'

Shapeshifter Robot Is Comprised Of Cobots
'Its lines wavered, flowed, and then painfully reformed. For an interval, the device struggled with itself...'

Google Commits To Fighting Deepfakes
'The program raced up the screen one scan line at a time, subtly smoothing, deleting and coloring.'

China Accused Of Harvesting Organs From Unwanted Groups
'The death penalty was his immortality, and he would vote the death penalty for any crime at all.'

Osmiridium Sounds Like Science Fiction (But It's Not!)
I can't resist science-fictional elements. Especially when they're real.

When Will We See The First Space Hotel?
'The heart of it was a vast hexagonal structure of welded metal, ten miles across...'

SpaceX Starhopper Has Flash Gordon Style
SpaceX makes retro cool spacecraft.

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.