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"In 1970 I found little difficulty staying 30 years ahead of the man in the street, and now I find it difficult to stay 18 months ahead of the man on the street."
- Vernor Vinge

Star Machine  
  A device that serves as a boost to psychokinetic powers of mind, enabling paranormals to send their awareness to distant planets.  

Shepherd Blaine is a space explorer, but he never leaves the earth. A member of a corporation called Fishhook, he sends his mind where nature has made it so difficult for human bodies to go.

He crawled upward from the well of darkness into which he had been plunged, groping his way with a blind persistence that was almost driven instinct...

Blaine opened his eyes and saw that the lid of the place in which he lay had been tilted back, and the glare of brightness that was a hooded light bulb was stabbing down at him.

He took inventory of his body and it was all right. There was no reason for it not to be all right, for it had lain here and rested for all of 30 hours.

He climbed from the coffin-like machine and shivered, for he was suddenly cold.

"Here's your jacket, sir," one of the faces said, a face that surmounted a white smock.

It was coming back, familiar now as he stood there are sipping at his glass of milk, the great operations room with its rows of glistening star machines, some of which were closed while the rest stood open. And in the closed ones lay others like himself, their bodies left behind and their minds far out in space.

From Time is the Simplest Thing, by Clifford Simak.
Published by Doubleday in 1961
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  - Symbiotic Sphere By Space Synapse

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