"The germinal societies like Singapore and communist Hong Kong may give us a mutant capitalism that is both virulent and efficient. This is a significant cultural danger."
In the world of this story, most human beings had given up walking.
I think that this is a spot-on prediction of the increasing use of "scooters" by people who should be healthy but have given up walking for reasons of obesity or laziness.
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18 Wheels Mutant Centipede Vehicle
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'...a capsule which he placed against his wrist.'
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'The crawling, exploring object was V-Stephen's surgeon-hand...'
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'It radiates outward in a cone which, by the time it has reached our section of space, is many lightyears across.'
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'Drake was the young spatial engineer he employed to terraform the little rock.'
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'... with a weird simulation of life, the ten forked ends of each arm commenced a rattling pressing of the buttons.'
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Ah, what could have been - still in the future.
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'Each of the four areas is enclosed by a sonic wall...'
Barista Robot Perfects Latte Swirl With Multi-DOF Wriggle
'It's done with a flip of the third joint of the tentacle on the down beat.'
Vendetta 2023 All-Terrain Skateboard Could Use Neal Stephenson's Smartwheels
'If you surf over a bump... If you surf over a pothole...'
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