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"the [science fiction] writer should be able to convince the reader (and himself) that the wonders he is describing really can come true...and that gets tricky when you take a good, hard look at the world around you."
- Frederik Pohl

Lift Chair  
  A single occupant lifted by great birds.  

The basic idea was used about three hundred years earlier.

...Xanten constrained six Birds to a lift chair, directed them first on a wide sweep around the castle, then south to Far Valley.

The Birds aired their usual complaints, then bounded down the deck in great ungainly hops which threatened to throw Xanten immediately to the pavement. At last gaining the air, they flew up in a spiral, Castle Hagedorn became an intricate miniature far below...


(The Lift Chair from 'The Last Castle' by Jack Vance)

Xanten indicated where he wished to alight; the Birds... set Xanten down so roughly that had he not been alert the shock would have pitched him head over heels.

Technovelgy from The Last Castle, by Jack Vance.
Published by Del Rey in 1967
Additional resources -

One of the very first novels that could reasonably be called science fiction, the 1638 work The Man in the Moone by Francis Godwin, featured a trip into space courtesy of Gansas, great birds that lifted a small craft upwards.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Last Castle
  More Ideas and Technology by Jack Vance
  Tech news articles related to The Last Castle
  Tech news articles related to works by Jack Vance

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