Science Fiction Dictionary: Ideas, Terms and Technology
( 3902 Inventions Available)

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Device Name Book/Story Author Date
A surveillance camera system that analyzes the unique way in which people walk, to identify them.
Little Brother Doctorow  2008
Galactic Damping Field
A vast field of force emanating from the center of the galaxy.
Brain Wave Anderson  1953
Geography on a galactic scale.
Second Foundation Asimov  1953
Star display.
Citizen of the Galaxy Heinlein  1957
Galaxy Superbrain
The idea that the galaxy itself is a conscious entity.
Short-Wave Madness Castle  1939
Games Machine
A vast computer system.
World of Null-A van Vogt  1945
Migratory birds that fly all the way to the Moone.
The Man in the Moone Godwin  1638
Garbage Device
Autonomous garbage collection device.
The Age of The Pussyfoot Pohl  1966
Garbage Mine
The idea that recycling can spawn entirely new industries.
Earth Brin  1990
Garbage Screen
Use of bits of metal to confuse radar targeting of space stations.
Space Tug Leinster  1953
Garbage-can Banger
An elaborate noise-based weapon.
The Zap Gun Dick  1965
Gas Giant
Large planet consisting primarily of gas with a solid core.
Solar Plexus Blish  1952
A opening through spacetime to other worlds.
The Gate to Xoran Wells  1931
A device that opens a portal to another dimension.
Wanderer of Infinity Vincent  1933
Projectiles driven by electromagnetic forces.
The Stainless Steel Rat's Revenge Harrison  1970
A feather-light tent, made of a fabric just one molecule thick.
This Immortal Zelazny  1966
Using the standard letter designation in physics for gravity.
Sacred Martian Pig (Idris' Pig) St. Clair  1949
Gee Bath
Essentially a waterbed designed to help older or untrained people cope with high acceleration aboard spacecraft.
The Mote in God's Eye Niven (w/J. Pournelle)  1974
A genetically-modified human ideally created for menial work.
Alpha Centauri Meier  1999
General Bodies Tortoise
A passenger vehicle genetically engineered from tortoise DNA and controlled by implanted electronics.
Sparrowhawk Easton  1990
General Intelligence Machine
News and information from one device.
When the Sleeper Wakes Wells  1899
General Products Hull
Nearly indestructible outer skin for spaceships; pick your hull size and put what you want inside.
Neutron Star Niven  1966
General Strike of the Robots
All over the world, robots cease their labors.
Rex Vincent  1934
Generate New Phone Number
A software program that creates a new phone number for each call.
Press Enter Varley  1984
Generation Ship
A spacecraft that carries a complete social group over many years.
Star Ship Tubb  1955
Genetic Ark
Enormous, multi-habitat enclosed spaces, used to conserve the animal gene pool.
Earth Brin  1990
Genetic Engineering
Direct manipulation of genetic material
Dragon's Island Williamson  1951
A device that does a 'live capture' of a biometric skin sample.
The Ophiuchi Hotline Varley  1977
Geodesic Inflexors
Propulsion provided not by pushing against matter, but against spacetime.
Star of Dreams Williamson  1941
Spacecraft propulsion that pushes against the very fabric of space itself.
The Cometeers Williamson  1936
Device provides instantaneous teleportation of selected objects over vast distances.
One Against The Legion Williamson  1939
Geofractor Shield
Protects the bearer against unwanted geofractor use.
One Against The Legion Williamson  1939
Geometric Modeling
The first recorded use of geometric figures to directly represent, or model, living beings.
Gulliver's Travels Swift  1726
An atomic powered, miniaturized means of propulsion.
One Against The Legion Williamson  1939
Geosynchronous Satellite
A communications satellite that appears to "hover" over one spot on the earth's surface; it goes around the earth in twenty-four hours.
V2 for Ionospheric Research Clarke  1945
A person who creates landforms and physical environments
The Diamond Age Stephenson  1995
Geriatric Rooming-House
An apartment building with rooms built especially with the very senior citizen in mind.
Galactic Pot-Healer Dick  1969
Gesture-Controlled Device
An electronic device that is controlled by hand gestures.
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Adams  1979
Gesturing Robot
A robot that uses gestures to communicate.
Robbie (Strange Playfellow) Asimov  1940
A living, functioning person who is regrown or recreated from the tissues of a dead person.
Dune Messiah Herbert  1969
Ghost Trap
Device for capture and temporary storage of ectoplasmic entities.
Ghostbusters Ramis  1984
An advertisement projected onto a fine mist.
The Ophiuchi Hotline Varley  1977
A sentient computer partially built with magic.
Blood of Amber Zelazny  1986
Giant Flat Panel Display
Movie screen-sized flat panel display for live televised images.
The Shape of Things To Come Wells  1936
Enormously powerful computing device.
The Cyberiad: Fables for the Cybernetic Age Lem  1965
Breathable fluid that provides oxygen to the lungs, allowing greater pressure on the body.
The Algebraist Banks  2004
Glass Bees
Walnut-sized flying automata.
The Glass Bees Junger  1957
Glass Dome
Protective cover for cities.
A Modern Utopia Wells  1905
Glass Pistol
A clear glass gun that fires poisoned splinters.
A Martian Odyssey Weinbaum  1934
A transparent material of great strength.
Brigands of the Moon Cummings  1930
Global Climate Control
Adjust the Earth's axis so the seasons are more temperate and uniform.
A Journey In Other Worlds Astor IV  1894
Globular Glass Helmet
A bowl-shaped space helmet.
Murder on the Asteroid Binder  1933
Floating spherical light bulb with organic energy source.
Dune Herbert  1965
A mineral that absorbs light by day and emits it by night.
Dying of the Light Martin  1977
Glow-Worm Living
Alternated work, play and slumber without long periods of sleep.
In the Deep of Time Lathrop  1897
A person who requires so much life support, they are built into the chair.
Millenium Varley  1983
Computing device capable of producing an informational model of absolutely everything in existence.
The Cyberiad: Fables for the Cybernetic Age Lem  1965
Goat/Spider Silk
High tensile strength fibers from - goats.
Oryx and Crake Atwood  2003
An alien medical technology that enables full body healing in the event of traumatic injury.
Time is the Simplest Thing Simak  1961
A ground-only vehicle.
The Godmakers Herbert  1972
Gogglelike Televisors
A screen technology placed very close to the eyes.
The Robot and the Lady Wellman  1938
Golden Lights
Another unusual use of the suspensor field; lights are suspended in it.
Dune Herbert  1965
Golden Ray of Synchronized Vibrations
Disrupts matter by hurling electrons out of their energy states and scattering them.
The Return of the Murians Schachner  1936
Golden Shuttles (Mechanical Mice)
Very small robots with an appetite for watch parts.
The Mechanical Mice Hugi  1941
Gold-Fish-Bowl World
An artificial water planet.
Star Maker Stapledon  1937
Gom Jabbar
A needle with deadly poison, used to test for humans.
Dune Herbert  1965
Gourmet Space Cuisine
The finest in French cuisine, in outer space.
From the Earth to the Moon Verne  1867
Governing Keyboard
A remote-controlled robot responds to keyboard commands.
The Threat of the Robot Keller  1929
Government Data Transparency
The idea that all of the information available to the government should be posted online and be easily accessible to everyone.
The Shockwave Rider Brunner  1975
Government Lethal Chamber
A legal suicide booth.
The Repairer of Reputations Chambers  1895
Government Machine
The automata that constitute the entire government, all in one building.
Mechanocracy Breuer  1932
GPP Genuine People Personalities
Giving mechanisms their own unique affect.
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Adams  1979
GPS Sunglasses
Sunglasses that contain both global positioning system components and cell phone services.
All Tomorrow's Parties Gibson  1999
Graffiti-Eating Finish
A wall covering that maintained itself, eating any graffiti placed on it.
All Tomorrow's Parties Gibson  1999
A contained, concealed breeding pond for the frog-like Gowachin.
The Dosadi Experiment Herbert  1977
Grantline Comptometer
Key-driven computer/calculator that easily solves even calculus problems.
Beyond the Stars Cummings  1928
Granton Motor
Spacecraft propulsion system based on gravital radiation.
Into the Meteorite Orbit Kelly  1933
Grapple Tracks
A means of automating the process of parking and releasing passenger vehicles from a parking garage.
The Dosadi Experiment Herbert  1977
A version of the tractor beam idea.
Exit From Asteroid 60 James  1940
Grass Carpet
An indoor home or office floor covering - living grass.
The Sirens of Titan Vonnegut, Jr.  1959
A medicine or supplement that helps astronauts deal better with high accelerations.
QRM - Interplanetary Smith  1942
Gravital Unit
Device that maintains Earth-comparable gravity on an asteroid.
Accidental Flight Wallace  1952
Gravitation Paralysis
Dread illness of space travelers striking when changing from very weak to very strong gravities.
The World With A Thousand Moons Hamilton  1942
Gravitation Screen
Shields a spacecraft from the gravity of a planetary body.
On The Martian Way Bishop  1907
Gravitational Disks
Maintain your footing on those low-gravity celestial bodies.
Revolt on Io West  1940
Gravitational Wave Viewer
A device used to see at astronomical distances.
Two Planets Lasswitz  1897
Relating to gravity.
A Question of Salvage Jameson  1939
Gravitic Generator
A device that produces an artificial gravity field.
Meddler's Moon Smith  1947
Gravitic Lift
An elevator with no visible means of support.
Prelude to Foundation Asimov  1988
Gravitic Repulsion Elevator
The elevator was of the new sort that ran by gravitic repulsion.
Foundation Asimov  1951
The science of using gravity as a technology.
Tricky Tonnage Jameson  1944
An instrument used to detect the gravitational influences on a space ship.
The Emperor of the Stars Schachner (w. AL Zagat)  1931
Gravity Assist
Using the gravity and orbital speed of a celestial body to change speed and course of a spacecraft.
Brigands of the Moon Cummings  1930
Gravity Beam
An conical attractive ray, it pulls ships to their doom.
Wandl, The Invader Cummings  1932
Gravity Belt
Adds 'weight' for walking on asteroids.
Venus Mines, Incorporated Schachner (w. AL Zagat)  1931
Gravity Centrifuge
Used in low gravity environments to build up muscle for visits to Earth, or other high gravity worlds.
Space Cadet Heinlein  1948
Gravity Detector
A device capable of detecting the gravitational field of a distant mass.
The Lunar Chrysalis Gallun  1931
Gravity Drive
A spaceship propulsion method that uses gravity or gravity waves.
Star Ship Anderson  1950
Gravity Lens
An optical lens created using the lightbending properties of gravity.
Protector Niven  1973
Gravity Neutralizers
The force of gravity is suspended!
Pirates of Space Barry  1931
Gravity Neutralizing Disks
Two plates between which Earth's gravitational influence is cancelled out.
Fessenden's Worlds Hamilton  1937
Gravity neutralizing paint
Paint or coating that neutralized the effects of gravity on whatever it was painted on.
Last of the Masters Dick  1954
Gravity Nullification (Gravity Screen)
Gravity annulled in its entirety in a small area.
Ralph 124c 41 + Gernsback  1911
Gravity Nullifier
Shields a large object from the effect of gravity.
The Sky Maniac Juve  1929
Gravity Planer
Device that creates a gravity field.
The Warriors Niven  1966
Gravity Port
Used for refueling.
Shadow Over Venus Long, Jr.  1946
Gravity Train
An underground railway system that utilizes gravity for acceleration.
The Ophiuchi Hotline Varley  1977
Gravity Tube
A special passage way that eases the movement of material within a ship.
Chindi McDevitt  2002
Gravity Web
Device for limiting the extent to which a person is subject to gravitational attraction.
Whipping Star Herbert  1969
Gravity Well
If you visualize spacetime as a flat, elastic plane, a planet will deform it, and it sits at the bottom of its own hole.
Life Cycle Anderson  1957
Gravity Whip
A roller coaster designe to provide riders with a 'zero G' experience.
Dream Park Niven (w/S. Barnes)  1981
Gravity-assisted Subway
The fastest way between continents (that does not entail leaving the ground).
A World Out of Time Niven  1976
Reliable, controllable gravity force.
The Bluff of the Hawk Gilmore  1932
Gravity-Polarized Explosive (TDX)
A chemical explosive that acts at an angle to the local gravitational field.
Cities in Flight Blish  1957
A device that shields an object from the effects of gravity.
Crashing Suns Hamilton  1928
Gravity-Simulator Harness
Device that simulates gravity's effect on muscles to keep in shape while in space.
Space Tug Leinster  1953
A graphical representation of gravitational fields.
The Sargasso of Space Hamilton  1931
Great Ear
An electronic telepathic listening device that monitors thousands of people simultaneously.
Our Friends From Frolix 8 Dick  1970
Green Bullet
A very compact (for 1950) radio transceiver, worn in the ear like a hearing aid.
Fahrenheit 451 Bradbury  1953
Green Guk
Algae that produces essential oxygen as a byproduct.
The Beat Cluster Leiber  1961
Grill-Screen Adaptor
Approved General Electronics Corporation solution for bomb shelters, in response to Soviet bore-pellets.
Foster, You're Dead Dick  1955
Grip Shoes
Shoes with velcro soles used to walk in weightless environments.
2001: A Space Odyssey Clarke  1968
To understand fully; become one with (from the Martial verb "to drink").
Stranger in a Strange Land Heinlein  1961
Groundcar (or Ground Car)
A non-skimming, non-flying vehicle.
Galactic Patrol Smith  1937
Not a space professional.
Waldo Heinlein  1942
A person who does not fly, especially into space.
Exiles of the Moon Schachner (w. AL Zagat)  1931
Ground-to-Orbit Ferry
A kind of space shuttle craft.
The Moon is a Harsh Mistress Heinlein  1966
Group Ego
A group mind; a single entity that shares a number of bodies.
Methuselah's Children Heinlein  1941
Group Mind
A shared consciousness between a number of individuals.
Last and First Men Stapledon  1930
Guard Robot
Early reference to a robot performing the functions of a security guard.
The Hood Maker ('Immunity') Dick  1955
A wireless means of controlling and directing the movement of a passenger vehicle.
Time Pawn Dick  1954
Guided Missile Control Station
An orbital missile base.
Between Planets Heinlein  1951
Gum Tree
A huge tree that lashed out with a mind of its own.
Symbiotica Russell  1943
A very sturdy, high-tensile composite.
Mobile Suit Gundam Tomino  1979
A female android.
Divine Endurance Jones  1984
Gyro Two-Wheeled Truck
A gyroscopically-stabilized truck with just two wheels.
The Sign of the Tiger Nourse (w/Meyer)  1958
A flying taxi.
You Are Forbidden! Shelton  1947
A two-wheeled, self-balancing automobile.
Two Boys in a Gyrocar the story of a New York to Paris motor race Brown  1911
Gyrocar (Gyro)
A gyroscopically stabilized car; a one-wheeled vehicle.
The Ring Anthony (w/R. Margroff)  1969
Gyrocar Monorail
A self-balancing vehicle.
The Anarch Jameson  1944
Gyrocars with Photo-Electric Braking
Force the tires into maximum contact with the road, then use photo-electric sensors to control braking and turns.
Photo Control Brown  1934
Gyrocosmically Stabilized Interplanetary Rocket
A mouthful, perfect for trips to the larger asteroids.
Buck Rogers, 2430 AD Nowlan (w/D. Calkins)  1929
Hidden in a top hat, this device cures staggering and reeling, for whatever reason.
An Experiment in Gyro-Hats Butler  1926
Gyroscope Seats
Your best bet for remaining at the right angle to the force of acceleration.
The Black Star Passes Campbell  1930
A small gyrostabilized hovercraft.
Ra For The Rajah Peterson  1938

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