Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"I went [to the top of] Vehicle Assembly Building and looked down, and tears burst from my eyes. The size of this cathedral where the Rockets take off to go to the moon is so amazing."
- Ray Bradbury

House Records  
  The vast archival information management system of the Bene Gesserit sisterhood, covering millennia.  

Computers are young; the first working computer systems were created only a half-century ago. When information management systems are implemented in real work environments, like hospitals, the first problem is - what do we enter into the system? Think of all of the information that is passed around in notes, written by hand in patient charts, x-ray films and so forth. Now, imagine what would it be like to have the many different tidbits of data (in every conceivable format, as technologies improved and varied) entered over the course of tens of millenia to sort through!

At this point in the novel, Taraza needs to check the records of the ancestry of particular individuals; the Bene Gesserit kept records of key bloodlines going back 300 generations and more.

Archives!

The holoprojector flickered with its continuing production above the table top - more bits and pieces that she had summoned.

Taraza rather distrusted Archivists, which she knew was an ambivalent attitude because she recognized the underlying necessity for data. But Chapter House Records could only be viewed as a jungle of of abbreviations, special notations, coded insertions, and footnotes. Such material often required a Mentat for translation or, what was worse in times of extreme fatigue demanded that she delve into Other Memories. ...You could never consult Archival Records in a straightforward manner. Much of the interpretation that emerged from that source had to be accepted on the word of the ones who brought it or (hateful!) you had to rely on the mechanical search by the holosystem. This, in turn, required a dependency on those who maintained the system. It gave functionaries more power than Taraza cared to delegate.

From Heretics of Dune, by Frank Herbert.
Published by Putnam in 1984
Additional resources -

Information management systems are as old as human bureaucracies; the ancient Egyptians had elaborate methods of ensuring that essential information (mostly related to taxes and land use) were kept from year to year. The "operating system" for information management was a whole social class; the scribes who could create and read the records.

I also enjoyed this little tidbit from the Bene Gesserit archives:

Bureaucracy destroys initiative. There is little that bureaucrats hate more than innovation, especially innovation that produces better results than the old routines. Improvements always make those at the top of the heap look inept. Who enjoys appearing inept?

Comment/Join this discussion ( 0 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Heretics of Dune
  More Ideas and Technology by Frank Herbert
  Tech news articles related to Heretics of Dune
  Tech news articles related to works by Frank Herbert

House Records-related news articles:
  - National Archives And Dune's House Records
  - Immortal Computing - Microsoft's 'House Records'
  - The Digital Dark Age And Bene Gesserit House Records
  - Conservation Of Tweets

Articles related to Computer
UK Internet Filters Default To 'Family-Friendly'
Living Slime Mold Builds Logical Circuits
First Commercial Artificial Brain?
AIREAL Lets You Feel Virtual Objects In The Open Air

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.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

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

Amazing Video Shows Chameleon-Like Crystal Display
'Across the vast impersonal face of metal... a ribbon of fluid letters appeared...'

Will Autonomous Systems' Self-Preservation Lead To Dangerous Behavior?
'This, the new types. The new varieties of claws. We're completely at their mercy, aren't we?'

Ooho Water Bulb (Or Blob) Replaces Horrific Plastic Bottles
'I held up my bulb of water ... visibly there was water missing.'

SRI International's Speedy, Ant-Sized Microrobot Swarm
'As if swarms of tiny animals were busily scurrying about...'

SF Authors Have Wearable Computing Ideas
The device would need to convey essential information.

Bookies Let You Place Your Bets On the Future!
Put your money where your mouth is, sf fans!

How Do Americans See The Future Of Technology?
Do you want to participate in the future?

Updated: Flying Graffiti Drone Will Alter The Urban Landscape
The tagger's dream - lie in bed while painting at a remote location.

Should Autonomous Cars Have Feelings About Crashes?
'Robots have worse problems than anybody.'

M-Block Modular Robots Assemble Themselves
'... as though a child should build from nursery blocks a fantastic shape which abruptly is filled with throbbing life.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

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

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.