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Old January 18 2011, 06:49 PM   #31
saturn5
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

Mistral wrote: View Post
Heinlein had a knack for anticipating logical developments. His "Door Into Summer" describes ATMs, robotic household cleaners (albeit a bit more sophisticated than the auto-vacuums out now), and government subsidies to the auto industry. "The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress" talks about sophisticated bionic replacement limbs, surrogate motherhood as a practical business and ice on the moon being tapped for water.There's also the citations noted above. He may not have been the first-but he could describe them in a simple manner that is clearly recognizable to readers today.
If you ever watch Future Weapons (with Mack!) on Discovery we really are getting the Starship Troopers phase. Not sure if that's a good or bad thing
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Old January 18 2011, 07:17 PM   #32
RAMA
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

Mistral wrote: View Post

If you ever watch Future Weapons (with Mack!) on Discovery we really are getting the Starship Troopers phase. Not sure if that's a good or bad thing
Hammered home by the 1997 concept art for Starship troopers that is now science fact:







Powered armor first appeared in 1937 in the Lensman series, and was re-popularized in 1959's "Starship Troopers".

RAMA
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Old January 18 2011, 07:21 PM   #33
RAMA
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

Christopher wrote: View Post
RAMA wrote: View Post
I've never found the cellular phone phenomenon to be as dramatic a technological revelation as some other technologies, since after all, mobile communications have been available for a long time, its just the sophistication that has changed. Smartphones are a little different, by adding a lot of features (gps, im, txt, ereaders, weather, www) they have made the information age more mobile.
On the other hand, there have been a number of sci-fi films and shows that didn't anticipate ubiquitous mobile phones. Back to the Future Part II, for instance, depicted a big, ultracomplicated high-tech wall phone in 2015, but no mobile phones.

Of course, a lot of SF did anticipate mobile communication devices to some extent, but very few writers anticipated anything like the Internet.



RAMA wrote: View Post
First appearance of holograms in SF...Things to Come had the same displays as in Avatar, back in 1936. Rarely were they used in visual fiction after...but when were they first used in literature? Its one I can't seem to find.
Well, if you're talking about translucent images projected in midair, those aren't actually holograms by any technically valid definition; a hologram is a 2-dimensional substrate storing 3-dimensional data. They're more properly called volumetric projections.

And there's plenty of precedent for 3-dimensional video in prose SF of the '50s and '60s, under names like 3D, 3-D, threedee, threedy, three vee, 3-di, tri-D, tridee, trideo, tri-di, tri-dim, tri-v, trivee, trivid, and trivvy (names taken from the OED science fiction citations site, pages 1, 13, and 14). After all, 3-D movies first became a fad in the '50s, so it was a simple enough extrapolation. Holography as a real technology developed in the '60s after the laser was invented, so by the '70s, there were abundant references to "holovision" and "holos" in SF (see citations list p. 5). I'm not sure how many of these might've been described as midair volumetric projections of the type familiar from Star Wars and Avatar, but I'm sure there were some.

You're right I should have made that distinction...holograms have been in existence for 50 years...but volumetric displays have not. Modern HUDs have projected information now since 1960.

Things to Come volumetric/projection displays:

http://www.pantopicon.be/blog/wp-con...6-1-72dpi2.jpg

http://www.technovelgy.com/graphics/...sion-wells.jpg
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Old January 18 2011, 09:32 PM   #34
Mr. Adventure
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

RAMA wrote: View Post
Mistral wrote: View Post

If you ever watch Future Weapons (with Mack!) on Discovery we really are getting the Starship Troopers phase. Not sure if that's a good or bad thing
Hammered home by the 1997 concept art for Starship troopers that is now science fact:







Powered armor first appeared in 1937 in the Lensman series, and was re-popularized in 1959's "Starship Troopers".

RAMA
Do those have jump jets and tactical nukes?
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Old January 18 2011, 10:38 PM   #35
RAMA
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

Mr. Adventure wrote: View Post
RAMA wrote: View Post
Mistral wrote: View Post

If you ever watch Future Weapons (with Mack!) on Discovery we really are getting the Starship Troopers phase. Not sure if that's a good or bad thing
Hammered home by the 1997 concept art for Starship troopers that is now science fact:







Powered armor first appeared in 1937 in the Lensman series, and was re-popularized in 1959's "Starship Troopers".

RAMA
Do those have jump jets and tactical nukes?
Oh give them a decade or 2...

Smallest launchable nuke I've seen is a two-man 102mm recoilless rifle version.
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Old January 19 2011, 12:43 AM   #36
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

Ubik wrote: View Post
Oh, and Heinlein also invented tribbles, in his very mediocre juvenile The Rolling Stones (the Star Trek writers actually had to get permission from him to use them, even though he called them by a different name.)
Not exactly. David Gerrold based the tribbles on the rabbit overpopulation problem in Australia, and though he's a huge Heinlein fan/emulator, any influence from The Rolling Stones was unconscious at most. The studio's researchers did notice the similarity, and either Roddenberry or Gene Coon called up Heinlein to let him know about it, and he said he didn't see a problem. He later sent a note to Gerrold, which is quoted in Gerrold's nonfiction book about the making of the episode, also entitled The Trouble With Tribbles (on p. 253 of the 1973 Ballantine paperback edition): "Let me add that I felt that the analogy to my flat cats was mild enough to be of no importance -- and we both owe something to Ellis Parker Butler... and possibly to Noah." (Butler wrote a story involving guinea-pig proliferation.)
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Old January 19 2011, 11:52 AM   #37
saturn5
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

RAMA wrote: View Post
Mr. Adventure wrote: View Post
RAMA wrote: View Post

Hammered home by the 1997 concept art for Starship troopers that is now science fact:







Powered armor first appeared in 1937 in the Lensman series, and was re-popularized in 1959's "Starship Troopers".

RAMA
Do those have jump jets and tactical nukes?
Oh give them a decade or 2...

Smallest launchable nuke I've seen is a two-man 102mm recoilless rifle version.
Only a matter of time really. I remember in Starship Troopers Heinlein describes a 'gizmo as large as a stick of gum that replicates an entire orchestra'. The I-pod anyone?
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Old January 19 2011, 12:39 PM   #38
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

RAMA wrote: View Post
Smallest launchable nuke I've seen is a two-man 102mm recoilless rifle version.
Presumably the Davy Crockett from the 60's.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Davy_Cr...nuclear_device)

I guess if you had powered armour, you'd be strong enough to tote it under your arm.

The 60's also gave us the Aeropack.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jet_pack

The trouble is that the more technology you have, the more likely it is to break down at a critical moment, or to screw up and kill the operator.
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Old January 19 2011, 03:49 PM   #39
RAMA
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

Great Mambo Chicken wrote: View Post
RAMA wrote: View Post
Smallest launchable nuke I've seen is a two-man 102mm recoilless rifle version.
Presumably the Davy Crockett from the 60's.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Davy_Crockett_(nuclear_device)

I guess if you had powered armour, you'd be strong enough to tote it under your arm.

The 60's also gave us the Aeropack.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jet_pack

The trouble is that the more technology you have, the more likely it is to break down at a critical moment, or to screw up and kill the operator.
Now can u imagine a trooper toting a 102mm (they also made a 155mm version) recoilless rifle around?
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Old January 19 2011, 04:09 PM   #40
JarodRussell
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

What, no love for Jules Verne?

And Forbidden Planet is a version of The Tempest, which makes Shakespeare one of the earliest science fiction authors.
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Old January 19 2011, 06:30 PM   #41
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

Nanotech and "Gray Goo" scenerio: The first conceptual use of nanotech was in 1959 by Richard Feynman. The term was coined in 1974 by Norio Taniguchi. Between 1979 and 1985, Eric Drexler refined the concepts which led to the book that popularized nanotech: "Engines of Creation" in 1986. He coined the term "gray goo" which simply put would mean: a large mass of replicating nanomachines lacking large-scale structure reducing raw materials to basic components.

Just as Sci-fi misjudged the effect of computers, nanotech was also underused. Arthur C Clarke wrote a 1956 story that that included microscale robots. In 1969, Robert Silverberg wrote of nanobots that created a stereo speaker. In 1983, Greg Bear wrote a short story that was expanded in 1985 into "Blood Music", a novel which was adapted to a degree in the new Outer Limits in the 1990s. Diamond Age, Neal Stephenson(1995) is widely considered the best nanotech story to date.



In visual fiction, the first use of microtechnology was in 1966's "Fantastic Voyage" and again in "Innerspace" in the 1980s. True nanotech would appear in Sept, 1989, in the "Evolution" episode of STNG. Not only do these nanomachines replicate, but they act with another trope of Sci fi: a hive mind, leaving the viewer to wonder whether or not they might evolve into the early gray goo scenerio from the early 1990s from the Battle Angel Alita manga. Outer Limits included nanotech in several episodes in its first 2 seasons (1995-96) The first movie to use nanotechnology appears to be "Deep Red" in 1994. "Virtuosity" followed in 1995. STNG's "First Contact follows in 1996, finally showing how the Borg assimilate their victims. The gray goo scenerio first made its appearance in 2008's "The Day the Earth Stood Still". G. I. Joe included it on a smaller scale a year later.

For good measure: IBM logo written in nanoscale: 1989. First nanotechnology company formed: 1997. LED nanotech TV: http://gizmodo.com/5625184/nanotech-...gs-lex8-led-tv

RAMA
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Old January 19 2011, 06:33 PM   #42
RAMA
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

JarodRussell wrote: View Post
What, no love for Jules Verne?

And Forbidden Planet is a version of The Tempest, which makes Shakespeare one of the earliest science fiction authors.

Well it almost feels a given that Verne and Wells came up with a lot of "firsts". I wanted to focus on things Sci-fi fans took for granted and were less well known...thing we almost feel were only invented in our lifetimes.

Great Mambo Chicken wrote: View Post
RAMA wrote: View Post
Smallest launchable nuke I've seen is a two-man 102mm recoilless rifle version.
Presumably the Davy Crockett from the 60's.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Davy_Crockett_(nuclear_device)

I guess if you had powered armour, you'd be strong enough to tote it under your arm.

The 60's also gave us the Aeropack.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jet_pack

The trouble is that the more technology you have, the more likely it is to break down at a critical moment, or to screw up and kill the operator.
That didn't stop anyone from building supercomputers, electromagnetic rails guns, nuclear aircraft carriers or the like.

Jet/rocket packs seem to be one of the most spectacular failures of 20th century sci-fi speculation so far. Only two modern examples exist and they are barely more advanced than the the US military versions in the 60s.

http://www.jetpackinternational.com/equip.html

http://www.tecaeromex.com/ingles/RB-i.htm

..on that note...the first known rocketpack? Possibly 1928 in Amazing.



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Old January 19 2011, 11:22 PM   #43
RAMA
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

Solar sailer(s): The fact that electromagnetic radiation produces pressure was discovered in 1871. In 1924, Friedrich Zander proposed solar sails as a means of propelling a spacecraft.

Likely the earliest story in sci-fi involving this method of propulsion was in 1960's: "The Lady Who Sailed the Soul", by Cordwainer Smith. In 1964, Arthur C. Clarke speculated about a "solar yacht race" in "Sunjammer".

In visual fiction, Tron(1982) used a "solar sailing simulation", though it was not actually a physical spacecraft. The first appearance of a physical solar sailer was in May of 1995 on STDS9's "Explorers", followed closely by Outer Limits in July, 1995 with "The Message".



Ikaros, the first actual non-experimental solar sail mission ever was launched in 2010 by the Japanese space agency, followed by the Nanosail-D2 by NASA in Nov, 2010.

RAMA
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Old January 22 2011, 06:28 PM   #44
RAMA
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

Electromagnetic "rail" guns: In 1918, French inventor Louis Octave Fauchon-Villeplee invented an electric cannon. It was patented in the US in 1922, as an "Electric Apparatus for Propelling Projectiles". The idea was revived by Germany in 1944 as a large scale weapon but a working model was never built and would have been impractical based on the technology of the time. In 1950 a working railgun was used for experimental purposes in Australia.

In Literature, 1897 science fiction novel A Trip to Venus by John Munro used a "mass driver" calling it an "electric gun". Arthur C Clarke used a fortress based EM gun to shoot a warship in 1955. Gauss rifles became common in the Stainless Steel Rat series by Harry Harrison and Known Space series by Larry Niven in the 1960s.

1932



The "Last Starfighter" used mass drivers to launch asteroids in 1984, but possibly was predated by "This Island Earth", in 1953. Disney's TV movie "Earth Star Voyager" used railguns to launch tracking devices in 1988. Mass Drivers were used to destroy the surface of Narn in Babylon 5 on Oct, 1995.

The US Navy tested a world record mach 8 railgun in Dec, 2010. Warships are expected to field similar weapons by 2020. The next generation of US aircraft carriers are expected to use EM catapults to launch aircraft. http://www.naval-technology.com/projects/dd21/

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Old January 22 2011, 06:31 PM   #45
RAMA
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Re: Some science fiction "firsts"

RAMA wrote: View Post
Nanotech and "Gray Goo" scenerio: The first conceptual use of nanotech was in 1959 by Richard Feynman. The term was coined in 1974 by Norio Taniguchi. Between 1979 and 1985, Eric Drexler refined the concepts which led to the book that popularized nanotech: "Engines of Creation" in 1986. He coined the term "gray goo" which simply put would mean: a large mass of replicating nanomachines lacking large-scale structure reducing raw materials to basic components.

Just as Sci-fi misjudged the effect of computers, nanotech was also underused. Arthur C Clarke wrote a 1956 story that that included microscale robots. In 1969, Robert Silverberg wrote of nanobots that created a stereo speaker. In 1983, Greg Bear wrote a short story that was expanded in 1985 into "Blood Music", a novel which was adapted to a degree in the new Outer Limits in the 1990s. Diamond Age, Neal Stephenson(1995) is widely considered the best nanotech story to date.



In visual fiction, the first use of microtechnology was in 1966's "Fantastic Voyage" and again in "Innerspace" in the 1980s. True nanotech would appear in Sept, 1989, in the "Evolution" episode of STNG. Not only do these nanomachines replicate, but they act with another trope of Sci fi: a hive mind, leaving the viewer to wonder whether or not they might evolve into the early gray goo scenerio from the early 1990s from the Battle Angel Alita manga. Outer Limits included nanotech in several episodes in its first 2 seasons (1995-96) The first movie to use nanotechnology appears to be "Deep Red" in 1994. "Virtuosity" followed in 1995. STNG's "First Contact follows in 1996, finally showing how the Borg assimilate their victims. The gray goo scenerio first made its appearance in 2008's "The Day the Earth Stood Still". G. I. Joe included it on a smaller scale a year later.

For good measure: IBM logo written in nanoscale: 1989. First nanotechnology company formed: 1997. LED nanotech TV: http://gizmodo.com/5625184/nanotech-...gs-lex8-led-tv

RAMA
Nova is airing an episode about nanotech Jan 26th: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/tech/ma...f-smaller.html

Program Description

How small can we go? Could we one day have robots taking "fantastic voyages" in our bodies to kill rogue cells? The triumphs of tiny are seen all around us in the Information Age: transistors, microchips, laptops, cell phones. Now, David Pogue takes NOVA viewers to an even smaller world in "Making Stuff: Smaller," examining the latest in high-powered nano-circuits and micro-robots that may one day hold the key to saving lives.


The other programs in the "Making Stuff" series are "Stronger," "Cleaner," and "Smarter."
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