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"Tokyo homeless people reiterate the whole nature of living in Tokyo in cardboard boxes, they're only slightly smaller than Tokyo apartments, and they have almost as many consumer goods. It's a nightmare of boxes within boxes."
- William Gibson

Electro-Culturer  
  A device used to artificially stimulate cell growth and development.  

In the story, a young man died in a tragic electrocution accident, but fortunately it was possible to maintain his brain artificially for ten thousand years! In the future, you'll need a larger brain to keep up.

"Your capacity for brain development has been increased ten-fold...

But what was more startling and electrifying was the object they were bent over. It was the brain of a man. The two scientists seemed deeply engrossed in a pencil of orange light they were focusing on a part of the brain.

“There you see us beginning to culture the cells of your brain so that they can develop to a greater degree. We found that only a small fraction of the total capacity was developed naturally. The tube you see me looking through while Doctor Volor trains the electro-culturer on the cells is an electric microscope with which I am watching the cells as they expand.”

From The Ancient Brain, by A.G. Stangland.
Published by Science Wonder Stories in 1929
Additional resources -

Compare to the bubbleheads from The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch (1965) by Philip K. Dick.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Ancient Brain
  More Ideas and Technology by A.G. Stangland
  Tech news articles related to The Ancient Brain
  Tech news articles related to works by A.G. Stangland

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