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"Human beings hardly ever learn from the experience of others. They learn; when they do, which isn't often, on their own, the hard way."
- Robert Heinlein

Microfarm  
  Food creation without soil.  

"Our biotechnicians have worked out perfect strains. The algae grow in the purest light and the most carefully balanced electrolyte solutions. The saprocytes are fed on beautifully combined organics. The formulas and recipes are something no tribespeople will ever know. - Come on, here we are. Sniff all you want. You'll find nothing offensive. That is one reason why our food is in demand throughout the Galaxy and why, we are told, the Emperor eats nothing else..."

They stepped out into a narrow corridor, on each side of which were large thick glass tanks in which roiled cloudy green water full of swirling, growing algae, moving about through the force of gas bubbles that streamed up through it. They would be rich in carbon dioxide, he decided...

"I presume," said Seldon, "that everything is automated."

From Prelude to Foundation, by Isaac Asimov.
Published by Doubleday in 1988
Additional resources -

Compare to the crop algae from James Blish's 1957 novel Cities in Flight, protine from Philip K. Dick's 1955 first novel Solar Lottery and scop (single cell protein) from Bruce Sterling's 1988 novel Islands in the Net.

Thanks to Connor Lawrence for contributing this item.

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  More Ideas and Technology from Prelude to Foundation
  More Ideas and Technology by Isaac Asimov
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