Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"My feeling is that the chance of our surviving into the twenty-first century as working civilization is less than fifty percent but greater than zero."
- Isaac Asimov

Force-Field Penknife  
  A pocket-sized knife, the blade of which is a force-field.  

In this part in the story, the Traders are trying to get their goods into "closed" planets; that is, planets whose rulers are suspicious of technology that is backed by the Foundation.

Gorov shrugged. "...The point is that they will not innovate and their internal economy is entirely non-nuclear. That is what we must change."

"How were you going to do it?"

"By breaking the resistance at one point. To put it simply, if I could sell a penknife with a force-field blade to a nobleman, it would be to his interest to force laws that would allow him to use it. Put that baldly, it sounds silly, but it is sound, psychologically. To make strategic sales, at strategic points, would be to create a pro-nucleics faction at court."

From Foundation, by Isaac Asimov.
Published by Doubleday in 1951
Additional resources -

This item is interesting not just because a force-field "blade" could never bend back and cut your fingers. The force-field penknife is arguably the first reference to a cutting blade made of energy; it may be the inspiration for the lightsaber of Star Wars fame. The planet Coruscant, the central planet for the Empire, was certainly inspired by Trantor, the center of government in the first Foundation book. So Lucas had read the book.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 0 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Foundation
  More Ideas and Technology by Isaac Asimov
  Tech news articles related to Foundation
  Tech news articles related to works by Isaac Asimov

Articles related to Weapon
TIKAD Armed Drone Ready To Fight
LaWS Laser Can Take Out Rogue Drones
Keith Laumer's Bolo Autonomous Tanks Right On Schedule
Railguns For Surface Ships

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

More News

HEXA Robotic Help For Plants
Then some unknown race had chanced upon the dreamers and decided to "help them out."

Korean Tesla Model S Video 'Excelsior' Is Indeed Our Motto
'Improving man by bringing him close to Nature, while they combine the sensations of coasting with the interest of seeing the country well...'

DIY Robot Shoots You In The Face
'...there were automatic guns that fired ligamine darts.'

A Bayesian Approach to Safe Imitation Learning For AIs and Robots
Um, how about that pension for the humans who serve as the models for robot behavior?

Qoobo Headless Robotic Therapy Cat Was Anne McCaffrey's Idea
'...used as surrogates in intense dependency cases.'

Autonomous Cars Talk To Each Other At MCity
'My cars talk to one another.'

PUFFER Robots - From Philip K DIck's Second Variety?
'Across the ground something small and metallic came, flashing in the dull sunlight of midday.'

Russian Space Garden
'We saw the gardens, flooded with artificial sunlight...'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.