Latest By

Artificial Intelligence
Data Storage
Input Devices
Living Space
Space Tech
Virtual Person

"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."
- Gregory Benford

Sky Ceiling  
  Ceilings that consist of large screens, on which are presented images of the sky.  

This is one of the cooler features of the Hogwarts castle from Harry Potter and the Sorceror's Stone; however, it appeared in this novel by Stanislaw Lem more than a generation earlier.

These ceilings are intended to solve a problem in a very organized future society; how do you have multi-level cities, while still making sure that everyone has the feeling of being outdoors?

"How do they work it so that the sky is visible at every level of the city?"

She perked up.

"Very simple. Television - that is what they called it, long ago. On the ceilings are screens. They transmit what is above the Earth - the sky, the clouds..."

"But surely the levels are not that high," I said. "Forty-story buildings stand there..."

"It is an illusion," she said, smiling. "The buildings are only partly real; their continuation is an image. Do you understand?" "I understand how it's done, but not the reason."

"So that the people living on each level do not feel deprived. Not in any way."

From Return from the Stars, by Stanislaw Lem.
Published by Not known in 1961
Additional resources -

I'm wondering if there are any earlier examples of this, either in sf or in the design world. The idea of a flat display the size of a wall is present in the parlor walls from Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451, which was published in 1953. I also remember flat panel displays used as 'windows' (with a picture presented from outdoors) within an enormous city-in-a-building (an arcology) from Oath of Fealty, a 1981 novel by Niven and Pournelle.

If you can think of earlier (or other) examples, please list them in the discussion section below.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 5 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Return from the Stars
  More Ideas and Technology by Stanislaw Lem
  Tech news articles related to Return from the Stars
  Tech news articles related to works by Stanislaw Lem

Sky Ceiling-related news articles:
  - SkyCeiling Big Indoor Sky
  - SkyV SkyCeiling From The Sky Factory
  - Coleus LED 'Skylight' Dispenses Natural Sunlight Indoors

Articles related to Culture
Blockchain Used To Verify Election Results
We Could Downgrade Puerto Rico - And Thereby Save It
The Neuroon Open Sleep Tracker For Lucid Dreaming
'Do Not Pay' Chatbots To Replace Law Firm Associates?

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.





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

Dune Fans! Metal-Organic Frameworks Make Science Fiction Real
'Dew collectors,' he muttered, enchanted by the simple beauty of such a scheme.

Manned Maneuvering Unit From 1984
'The glittering little rocket bolted to the black iron behind him.'

Astronaut Gets Younger In Space
'So what we're looking for now is not an antibiotic - an anti-life drug - but an anti-agathic, an anti-death drug...'

Blockchain Used To Verify Election Results
'Any adult could punch into the phone his or her code, followed by a yes or no.'

IJOP Integrated Joint Operations Platform China's Minority Report?
'All day long the idiots babbled, imprisoned in their special high-backed chairs...'

HushMe Bluetooth Device Reinvents The Hush-A-Phone
'Talking into a hush-a-phone which he had plugged into the telephone jack...'

Ultrathin Brain Needle Developed At MIT
Putting drugs into a selected cubic millimeter within the living brain.

Tesla Semi Truck Now At Work
Why wait? Tesla Semi now hard at work.

Illustris: The Next Generation Of Universe Simulation
'This digital device was ... A machine able literally to contain the Universe Itself...'

Scaly Yet Soft Robotic Snake
Love those robotic sneks.

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

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

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.