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"...a market economy is essentially a genetic algorithm for solving resource allocation problems..."
- Charles Stross

Charted Planetoid Mines  
  Charting the planetoids and minor bodies for mining purposes.  

Very early reference to this idea.

Where once the plantetoids had been a chaotic network of unplumbed mystery, frequented only by space scavengers and occasional pirate hordes, now it was a huge, charted, floating ore deposit for the entire Solar System.
From The Day We Celebrate, by Nelson S. Bond.
Published by Astounding Science Fiction in 1941
Additional resources -

Compare to asteroid mining, probably the earliest reference to the idea, in Garrett P. Serviss' 1898 story Edison's Conquest of Mars.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Day We Celebrate
  More Ideas and Technology by Nelson S. Bond
  Tech news articles related to The Day We Celebrate
  Tech news articles related to works by Nelson S. Bond

Charted Planetoid Mines-related news articles:
  - Asterank Database Identifies Profitable Asteroids

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