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

"The wealth of the universe is all over your head. We need to take command of the solar system to gain that wealth..."
- Larry Niven

Monoline  
  A wind-driven overland transport.  

Wind blew in sails, and trolley wheels whispered down the monoline - a half inch strand of white Swamp Island cable. From the dome at Swamp City, the line led from spine to spine across three miles of swamp to a rocky headland; it crossed over the rotten bassalt with only six inches to spare, swung in a wide curve to the southeast. At fifty foot intervals, L-brackets mounted to poles supported the line, so designed that the trolleys slid across with only a tremor and slight thud of contact.
From Big Planet, by Jack Vance.
Published by Startling Stories in 1952
Additional resources -

The wood was shaped and fitted with painstaking precision, and performed as well as any metal machine from the shops of Earth.

The big wheel was laminated from ten seperate strips, glued, grooved and polished. Spokes of hardened withe supported the central hub, whose bearings were wrought from a greasy black hardwood... Propulsion was achieved by sails, set to a lateen boom... Within reach was a double hand-crank,offset like the pedals of a bicycle; turning the crank would drive the trolley up any slight slope at the end of a long suspension which momentum and the pressure of the sails were unable to negotiate.

Thanks to an anonymous reader for this item.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 2 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Big Planet
  More Ideas and Technology by Jack Vance
  Tech news articles related to Big Planet
  Tech news articles related to works by Jack Vance

Articles related to Transportation
Electric Unicycle Is A Tumblebug
No Autonomous Trucks? Wait, What?
Elon Musk's Traffic Tunnel Challenge Is Boring
HVSD, Kitty Hawk's Electric Plane

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

A Passing Drone Has Covid-19 Advice
'Gold dots against blue, basketball-sized, twelve feet up.'

Prototype Robotic Masseur Has The Touch
'The automatic massager began to fumble gently...'

Trash Sorting AI Robot Presages Skynet, Thanks A Lot
Keep your head down, Kyle Reese.

Electric Unicycle Is A Tumblebug
'A tumblebug does not give a man dignity, since it is about the size and shape of a kitchen stool, gyro-stabilized on a single wheel.'

Another Soil Bacterium Eats Plastic
'...the plastic was dissolved before his eyes.'

reLive Memorial Come Back As A Tree
'It was time - time to go again. She touched the leaf. She was wanted.'

Engineered Living Building Materials
'... it was the cheapest building material known.'

Draw Circuits With Conductive Ink
'It's rewiring things... squeezing silver toothpaste in a ribbon along the printed circuitry.'

Arkangel: Automatic Visual Censoring
It's whatever the Party says it is, Winston.

NASA Competition To Design A Bucket Drum For Moon Mining
'There was a heap of discarded ore where Grantline had carted and dumped it...'

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.