Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"I did more research, and realized I almost would rather be a biologist than a writer, because there was incredible stuff going on!"
- Greg Bear

D-9 Motherspinner  
  An enormous genetically engineered spider used to create large structures in space.  

What do you do when you need a lot more spider silk for your orbital structures? Tens of thousands of miles more? Easy - you build a bigger spider.

"My father works a D-9," she said proudly, pointing at something on the bug's back.

"My god!" I said. "That's a man. Is that your father?"

"No, he works on the new Eight spoke, just getting started on that one..."

It took me a moment to realize that she was talking about her father's D-9 Motherspinner. I was still taken aback by the man riding the eigh-legged behemoth. Until that moment I had not known they were piloted...

The rider was in a pressurized box, like a howdah strapped to the back of an elephant. It was mounted behind the basketball-sized eyes and in front of the giant black sphere of her abdomen. He looked like the operator of a big crane or shovel, and that wasn't too far off the mark. He pulled levers and turned pulleys in a competent, bussinesslike way, and the spider turned or moved forward.

"The D-9's don't weave," Poly said. "They sit in one spot and start extruding silk, and smaller spiders grab those and start running with them. She can put out thousands of miles of silk at one sitting.

From The Golden Globe, by John Varley.
Published by Ace Books in 1998
Additional resources -

Compare to these early ideas of purposive genetic engineering, the designed bacteria from Golden Age great Raymond Z. Gallun's short story Seeds of Dusk and the manufactured monsters from H.G. Wells' 1896 novel The Island of Dr. Moreau.

Thanks to Erik Glenn for suggesting this item.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 0 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Golden Globe
  More Ideas and Technology by John Varley
  Tech news articles related to The Golden Globe
  Tech news articles related to works by John Varley

Articles related to Biology
Unique DNA To Foil Parts Counterfeiters
Steerable Locusts Detect Explosives
Real Leather Without Cows Modern Meadow Biofabrication
Epigenetic Memory's On/Off Switch Found

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.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

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

Cormorant Flying Car
'The cab came floating down out of the sky...'

ElliQ Robot To Help Israel's Grandmas And Grandpas
'The robant and the tiny old woman entered the control room slowly...'

EU Debates Kill Switches For Robots
'I have a mechanism which our autofac on Mars builds as an... emergency safety...'

Scotland Set To Implement Basic Income
'Earned by just being born.'

Sales Robots More Persistent Than Humans
'Robot-salesmen were everywhere, gesturing,,, shrilling...'

AI Identifies Suicidal Behavior With 93 Percent Accuracy
'...He padded into the living room, and seated himself by the suitcase; he opened it, clicked switches, and turned on Dr. Smile.'

Razer Project Valerie Laptop Unfurls
'A paper thin polycarbon screen unfurled silently...'

Dust Movement On The Moon, Saturn's Rings Solved
'...The dust normally on the surface picks up and keeps a charge.'

Largest Micro-Drone Swarm Release Successful
'... Programmed to hang in space in a hexagonal grid pattern.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

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

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.