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"What television does is rent us friends and relatives who are quite satisfactory. This is quite something, to rent artificial friends and relatives right inside the house."
- Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Bubble  
  An undersea elevator.  

This is real imaginative thinking. We think of elevators as utilitarian spaces; they do not need to offer more, because we only occupy them for a few moments, and space is at a premium. However, what if you were going to occupy the elevator for many minutes?

His class took one of the dozen bubbles back to the surface: slow-moving pressurized elevators that traveled up and down Xanadu's gigantic tether chains, ferrying work crews, researchers, and students. Each was large enough for ten people to lounge comfortably, with food processors, entertainment centers, Napcaps, and linking facilities. They had spent less than four hours down on the floor; the trip back would be a leisurely lunch.
From Saturn's Race, by Larry Niven (w/S. Barnes).
Published by Tor in 2000
Additional resources -

I think there are restaurants that start at the bottom of a tall pole, then spiral slowly upward while dinner is served, then back down again during dessert.

I was thinking about the idea that ideally you should be able to state your business idea in the length of time it takes to go three floors. What if you could bribe the elevator to go slower if you realized you had a potential client to talk to?

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Saturn's Race
  More Ideas and Technology by Larry Niven (w/S. Barnes)
  Tech news articles related to Saturn's Race
  Tech news articles related to works by Larry Niven (w/S. Barnes)

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