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

"[Science fiction] is the one literary medium left in which we have a free hand. We can do any damn thing we please."
- Alfred Bester

SSA Machine  
  A machine that compares two people for compatibility; it sees sub specie aeternitatis, literally 'under the aspect of eternity' or outside of time.  

Joe Fernwright sits next to Mali Yojez, an attractive humanoid, on the way to Plowman's Planet to do some work for a large and powerful being named Glimmung. On the way, she agrees to try the SSA machine with him, to give him the experience.

The stewardess began setting up the SSA machine in a rapid, efficient fashion, meanwhile explaining it. "SSA stands for sub specie aeternitatis; that is, something seen outside of time. Now, many individuals imagine that an SSA machine can see into the future, that it is precognitive. This is not true. The mechanism, basically a computer, is attached via electrodes to both of your brains and it swiftly stores up immense quantities of data about both of you. It then synthesizes these data and, on a probability basis, extrapolates as to what would become of you both if you were, for example, joined in marriage or perhaps living with each other. I will have to shave two small spots of hair on both of your heads, please, in order to attach the electrodes... How far ahead are you interested in? ...A year, or ten years? You are free to choose, but the less time-elapse you pick, the more accurate the extrapolation will be..."

"What form does its extrapolation take?" Joe asked. "Written on a paper ribbon in punch form, or-"

"You will be presented pictorially with a representative moment of your two lives entwined together a year from now," the stewardess said. "Projected in 3D and in color on the far wall."

From Galactic Pot-Healer, by Philip K. Dick.
Published by Berkley Publishing in 1969
Additional resources -

The SSA machine takes external data about the two, obtained from other data banks, and then spends about ten minutes pulling information from their brains for the simulation.

This is essentially a computerized dating service that makes use of detailed information about compatibility.

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

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Galactic Pot-Healer
  More Ideas and Technology by Philip K. Dick
  Tech news articles related to Galactic Pot-Healer
  Tech news articles related to works by Philip K. Dick

Articles related to Culture
We Could Downgrade Puerto Rico - And Thereby Save It
The Neuroon Open Sleep Tracker For Lucid Dreaming
'Do Not Pay' Chatbots To Replace Law Firm Associates?
Translate One2One From IBM's Watson Your Communication Solution

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

Orwell's Memory Hole Looms Larger Thanks To Nvidia
'All history was a palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary.'

Pipefish Robot Checks Pipes Cheap
Just like capsule endoscopy, but for bigger pipes. That go underground.

Nifty New SDS Space Debris Sensor For ISS
'Their radars... could easily pinpoint the debris of the early Space Age.'

NanoRacks Space Station Module Concept Validated
Space junk into space architecture.

Nuclear Drones Could Fly For Years
'I sent my eyes on their rounds and tended my gallery of one hundred-thirty changing pictures...'

SciFiQ Science Fiction Writing Aid
'Books were just a commodity that had to be produced, like jam or bootlaces.'

Robot Only Faster, Not Better, At Recycling
'Whenever a robot finds something it can't identify straight off... it puts whatever it is in the hopper outside your window.'

Poland Starts With 1000 Warmate 'Suicide Drones'
'Royal Security had told the pods to electrocute you or blast you into chum.'

Dream Of Building Your Own Rocket?
Fiorello Bodoni, you inspire all of us.

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.