"I'm very taken by mythology. I read it at a very early age and kept on reading it. Before I discovered science fiction I was reading mythology."
Both Niven and Pournelle are Heinlein fans; they may well have remembered this one from RAH novels.
For the earliest example of this piece of technovelgy, see cider press, from Double Star, by Robert Heinlein.
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'It's done with a flip of the third joint of the tentacle on the down beat.'
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'Then the spreading beam of the deranging ray struck them, and they stood an instant transfixed...'
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'...a power pack the size of a pea.'
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It's Data's day - at last.
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'...copy two of the original document no longer can be superimposed on copy one.'
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My prize robot, tall, dashing would speak and act for me...
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'A palm lock must be keyed to one individual's hand shape and palm lines.'
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'I have transferred the ego of a dog to a synthetic dog brain in the skull case of a robot dog.'
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