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"This is a predictive tool I've used: There are goals we've sought for ten thousand years, and we'll go on seeking them. Instant transport and travel, immortality (or at least longevity and miracle cures.), instant learning "
- Larry Niven

Artificial Life  
  Creating living beings from inorganic elements.  

"And their science made triumph after triumph. For long they had desired slaves to serve them, but the humans they captured for this purpose could not be used...

"So their scientists took counsel and produced at last the creatures that are now their slaves, two of which brought you here. The Martian scientists had gone far within the secrets of life and death, so far that they were now able to reproduce the processes of life itself, and make out inorganic elements the things you have seen...

"I have seen the things being made myself, and a ghastly sight it is. They do not eat, they do not sleep, they are literally living machines, needing only a certain stimulant from time to time, which is injected into them just as you would oil a machine."

From Across Space, by Edmond Hamilton.
Published by Weird Tales in 1926
Additional resources -

Compare to the androids from Jack Williamson's 1936 novel The Cometeers, which is probably the first use of the term "android" in science fiction.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Across Space
  More Ideas and Technology by Edmond Hamilton
  Tech news articles related to Across Space
  Tech news articles related to works by Edmond Hamilton

Artificial Life-related news articles:
  - Self-Healing Plastic Fixes Even Big Holes

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'Cortical Modem' Latest On DARPA's Wishlist
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Forget Longevity, How About Super-Intelligence?
The Bioengineered Uterus

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