"We're about 20 minutes away from the point where Clarke's law kicks in and technology becomes indistinguishable from magic."
This glove is made of a material that is described in the book as "trigger-rigid."
Karatands are available now - they're made of substances like d3o. Here's a picture of a modern-day Karatand:
See the article on d3o-based RibCap: Flexible-Rigid Beanie-Helmet For Snowsports to learn about modern-day shear-thickening fluids used in clothing and sportswear.
Compare this item to the flexible armor suit from Larry Niven's 1967 work Neutron Star.
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