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"Everything starts as somebody's daydream. And, when you're daydreaming, it is science fiction. It's when you start work out how you put it together, true science fiction becomes real science."
- Larry Niven

Matter Compiler  
  A device that builds the desired article (such as a dress) atom by atom according to a specified design.  

The ideal of being able to construct materials molecule by molecule is now being tested with very small nanomachines. However, it is only a matter of time before larger articles are made available.

One example that has a history in science fiction is the idea that customized clothing, like dresses, blouses and ribbons, could be created in an absolutely customized manner.

Whenever Nell's clothes got too small for her, Harv would pitch them into the deke bin and then have the M.C. make new ones. Sometimes, if Tequila was going to take Nell someplace where they would see other moms with other daughters, she'd use the M.C. to make Nell a special dress with lace and ribbons.
From The Diamond Age, by Neal Stephenson.
Published by Bantam Books in 1995
Additional resources -

Tired of shopping for clothes, and trying to find something that fits you? You might want to take a look at the entry for customized clothing from Methuselah's Children by Robert Heinlein some fifty years earlier.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Diamond Age
  More Ideas and Technology by Neal Stephenson
  Tech news articles related to The Diamond Age
  Tech news articles related to works by Neal Stephenson

Matter Compiler-related news articles:
  - Filabot Turns Dull Plastic Junk To 3D Printed Shiny

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