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"Science fiction is what scientists would do if they could - if they had enough grant money, enough time, and enough brains to do the wonderful things they would like to do."
- Greg Bear

High-Frequency Oven  
  This describes the essence of a microwave.  

Heinlein didn't invent the idea of the microwave oven; Raytheon patented it in 1946 - see the entry for microwavable food for more details.

Theoretically every ration taken aboard a Patrol vessel is pre-cooked and ready for eating as soon as it is taken out of freeze and subjected to the number of seconds, plainly marked on the package, of high-frequency heating required.
From Space Cadet, by Robert Heinlein.
Published by Scribner's Sons in 1948
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