Latest By

Artificial Intelligence
Data Storage
Input Devices
Living Space
Space Tech
Virtual Person

"It is change ... that is the dominant factor in society today... the world as it will be. This means that ... every man must take on a science fictional way of thinking.""
- Isaac Asimov

Usuform Robot Bartender  
  A robotic bartender that is designed along purely functional lines.  

The Empire, which held sway throughout the solar system, had a problem. Only by negotiating with a key Martian ambassador could necessary access to mining rights be obtained, and this ambassador refused to go off-planet because he couldn't get a decent Three Planets. Only Martian bartenders, with their many tentacles, could make a Three Planets; only they could measure out exactly the right amount of vuzd, for instance. Would it be possible to construct a Three Planets drink with a robot?

I took one sip and said, "Where's Guzub?... this Three Planets, it's perfect..."

Quinby opened a door. There sat the first original Quinby usuform - no remake of a Robinc model, but a brand-new creation. Quniby said, "Three Planets," and he [the robot] went into action. He had tentacles, and the motions were exactly like Guzub's except that he himself was the shaker. He poured the liquids into his maw, joggled about, and then poured them out of a hollow hoselike tentacle."

From Q.U.R., by Anthony Boucher.
Published by Astounding Science Fiction in 1943
Additional resources -

Here's how Quinby got the information he needed to construct Guzub II, the robot bartender.

"I got one of those new electronic cameras - you know, one thousand exposures per second... So we took pictures of Guzub making a Three Planets, and I could construct this one to do it exactly right down to the thousandth of a second. The proper proportion of vuzd, in case you're interested, works out to three-point-six-five-four-seven eight-two-three drops. It's done with a flip of the third joint of the tentacle on the down beat. It didn't seem right to use Guzub to make a robot that would compete with him and probably drive him out of business, so we've promised him a generous pension from the royalties on usuform barkeeps."

By now, you're probably wanting a Three Planets, and you're wondering when robotic tentacles will be up to the task. Take a look at the Snake-Arm Robots From OCRobotics and the OctArm robotic tentacle bot to learn more.

Compare to the Thorsen memory tube from Door into Summer (1956) by Robert Heinlein.

Thanks to Winchell Chung for suggesting this item.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 1 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Q.U.R.
  More Ideas and Technology by Anthony Boucher
  Tech news articles related to Q.U.R.
  Tech news articles related to works by Anthony Boucher

Usuform Robot Bartender-related news articles:
  - The Miraculous Stigmatabot Robot Bartender
  - Pancake-Flipping Robot Learns By Example
  - Robot Learns To Clean Whiteboard, Suck Up To Teacher
  - Robot Bartender (Or Waiter) From Carnegie Mellon
  - Monsieur Bartending Robot
  - Robot Bartenders At Sea
  - Robots Learn Cooking By Watching Videos - Foreseen In 1943
  - Robot Chef Makes Thousands Of Dinners
  - NVIDIA's DAVE2 Autonomous Car Learns From Drivers
  - Computers Understand Humans By Watching And Modeling Them

Articles related to Robotics
Soft Robotics - Now With 3D Printed Sensors!
Scaly Yet Soft Robotic Snake
Tiny Rubbery Robot To Take 'Fantastic Voyage'
Disney Vyloo Robots With Personality

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.





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

Save Your Brain's Connectome, Upload Yourself Elsewhere
'You've got remote storage. How regular is the update?'

TMS Decreases Belief In God, Increases Belief In Immigrants
'... setting up the same currents, the same basic ideas, in them all.'

Loomo Mini Transporter Robot Companion You Ride On
'Slowly the [robot] horse raised its head, wiggled its ears, blinked twice, gave a tentative whinny.'

Soft Robotics - Now With 3D Printed Sensors!
'A series of chemelectric afferent nerve-analogues, which permitted it to gauge to an ounce the amount of pressure necessary to snap a bone...'

AI Tool Lynx Insight And The Cybernetic Newsroom
'The structure,... was once a great homeostatic newspaper, the New York Times. It printed itself directly below us...'

Espresso Telescope Searches For Exoplanets
'These instruments were the wonderful ones our astronomers had perfected.'

Dune Fans! Metal-Organic Frameworks Make Science Fiction Real
'Dew collectors,' he muttered, enchanted by the simple beauty of such a scheme.

Manned Maneuvering Unit From 1984
'The glittering little rocket bolted to the black iron behind him.'

Astronaut Gets Younger In Space
'So what we're looking for now is not an antibiotic - an anti-life drug - but an anti-agathic, an anti-death drug...'

Blockchain Used To Verify Election Results
'Any adult could punch into the phone his or her code, followed by a yes or no.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

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

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.