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"There's a tendency to think that maybe if we can just throw enough hardware at the AI problem, then evolution can take care of the rest. Certainly that's how God went about making us."
- Rudy Rucker

Flex-Wheels  
  Special wheels designed for getting around on the Moon.  

Most of them moved on balloon tires, for this smooth, level plain posed no transportation difficulties; but one tanker rolled on the peculiar flex-wheels which had proved one of the best all-purpose ways of getting around on the Moon. A series of flat plates arranged in a circle, each plate independently mounted and sprung, the flex-wheel had many of the advantages of the caterpillar track from which it had evolved. It would adapt its shape and diameter to the terrain over which it was moving, and, unlike a caterpillar track, would continue to function even if a few sections were missing.
From 2001: A Space Odyssey , by Arthur C. Clarke.
Published by Del Rey in 1968
Additional resources -

See also the smartwheels from Neal Stephenson's 1992 novel Snow Crash.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from 2001: A Space Odyssey
  More Ideas and Technology by Arthur C. Clarke
  Tech news articles related to 2001: A Space Odyssey
  Tech news articles related to works by Arthur C. Clarke

Flex-Wheels-related news articles:
  - Tweel - (Almost) A Smart Wheel
  - NASA's Spring Tire For Improved Lunar Mileage
  - iRing Lunar Flex-Wheel
  - RASC-AL Lunar Wheel Design Challenge Is ON!

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