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

"...a lot of people find adventure on the Internet. That's their idea of being interactive. My idea of being interactive is going on out and doing it on the street."
- Harlan Ellison

Nutri-Matic  
  A drink dispenser that scans the person to determine what might go down well.  

Arthur Dent has had a difficult day. Perhaps a beverage?

He had found a Nutri-Matic machine which had provided him with a plastic cup filled with a liquid that was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea. The way it functioned was very interesting. When the Drink button was pressed it made an instant but highly detailed examination of the subject's taste buds, a spectroscopic examination of the subject's metabolism and then sent tiny experimental signals down the neural pathways to the taste centers of the subject's brain to see what was likely to go down well. However, no one knew quite why it did this because it invariably delivered a cupful of liquid that was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea.
From The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams.
Published by Harmony Books in 1979
Additional resources -

Machines that create food (without cooking) have a long and honorable history in science fiction. Compare the Nutri-Matic with the synthetic food dispenser from John W. Campbell's 1934 story Twilight and the food factory from Frederik Pohl's 1980 novel Beyond the Blue Event Horizon.

Apparently, people were not entirely happy with the output from the Nutri-Matric:

The Nutri-Matic was designed and manufactured by the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation whose complaints department now covers all the major landmasses of the first three planets in the Sirus Tau Star system.

Thanks to Erik Nodacker for suggesting this item.

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

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
  More Ideas and Technology by Douglas Adams
  Tech news articles related to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
  Tech news articles related to works by Douglas Adams

Nutri-Matic-related news articles:
  - Dr. Whippy Ice Cream Machine Makes Sure You're Happy
  - Unilever Smile-Based Ice Cream Vending Machine
  - Kiosk Looks At You, Then Decides On Your Meal

Articles related to Food
Beijing HaiDiLao Robotic Hotpot Restaurant Now Flavored By Artificial Intelligence
Plants of the Future - What Should They Be Like
Uber Eats Pairs Cars With Drones
Alcarelle Synthetic Alcohol Like Star Trek Synthehol

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

Hail SmartCan! Your Trash Bin Takes Itself Out
'...a waste can twenty feet away stirred into life.'

Finally! Microsoft Surface Neo And Surface Duo Implement Excellent Courier Idea
'Runcible, whose pages were thicker and more densely packed with computational machinery...'

Tap Strap 2 Now With Air Mouse
'He waved his hand and the circuit switched abruptly.'

Legal Profession Now Fairly Bristling With AI
'The virtual counsel appeared to be about forty-five years old and prosperous.'

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.'

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.