Science Fiction Dictionary
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

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

"But the problem with reincarnation is that it's hard to imagine what the storage medium for past lives would be. Not to mention the input-output device. I hesitate to rule it out completely, but I'd need pretty definite proof."
- Arthur C. Clarke

Swibble  
  An artificially evolved telepathic metazoan-based mind control device.  

What exactly is a swibble? Let's let the repairman explain.

Patiently, the repairman explained elementary physics. "Swibble-culture is an organic phenotype evolved in a protein medium under controlled conditions. The directing neurological tissue that forms the basis of the swibble is alive, certainly, in the sense that it grows, thinks, feeds, excretes waste. Yes, it's definitely alive. But the swibble, as a functioning whole, is a manufactured item. The organic tissue is inserted in the master tank and then sealed. I certainly don't repair that; I give it nutriments to restore a proper balance of diet, and I try to deal with parasitic organisms that find their way into it. I try to keep it adjusted and healthy. The balance of the organism, is, of course, totally mechanical."

"The swibble has direct access to human minds?" Anderson asked, fascinated.

"Naturally. It's an artificially evolved telepathic metazoan. And with it, Wright solved the basic problem of modern times: the existence of diverse, warring ideological factions, the presence of disloyalty and dissent.

Technovelgy from Service Call, by Philip K. Dick.
Published by Science Fiction Stories in 1955
Additional resources -

The swibble makes sure that, in the words of the prison warden in Cool Hand Luke, you "have your mind right." Peace of mind, that's what you get.

"Well, as a new swibble owner, you've found out the advantages. You know the sense of security and satisfaction in being certain that your ideology is exactly congruent with that of everybody else in the world..."

It was MacDowell who managed to pull himself together first. "Yeah," he said ironically. "It certainly sounds like what the missus and I want."

"Oh, you ought to have a swibble of your own," the repairman urged. "Consider -- if you have your own swibble, it'll adjust you automatically. It'll keep you on the right track without strain or fuss. You'll always know you're not going wrong -- remember the swibble slogan: Why be half loyal? With your own swibble, your outlook will be corrected by painless degrees . . .

Excellent story - well worth reading.

Compare to the Ampek F-a2 Recording System from The Simulacra (1964), also by Philip K. Dick.

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

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Service Call
  More Ideas and Technology by Philip K. Dick
  Tech news articles related to Service Call
  Tech news articles related to works by Philip K. Dick

Swibble-related news articles:
  - Living Robot Has Biological Brain
  - Smellicopter Combines Live Moth Antenna With Mechanical Drone
  - Lung On A Chip - Electronics Plus Human Cells
  - Hybrid Chips: Solid-State Device With Integrated Biological Cells
  - 3D-Printed Biohybrid Is A Tissue-Engineered Robot
  - Who Needs Dogs? Trained Bees Detect Explosives

Articles related to Biology
Let's Make Slaver Sunflowers! Engineering Plants To Reflect Light
Machete-Wielding Philodendron Isn't Going To Take It Anymore
Tsunami Forecasts Improved By Ionosphere Signals
EctoLife Concept Video Artificial Womb For Baby Mass Production

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 Science Fiction Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

Science Fiction Timeline
1600-1899
1900-1939
1940's   1950's
1960's   1970's
1980's   1990's
2000's   2010's

Science Fiction in the News

Ulm Sleep Pods For The Homeless
'The lid lifted and she crawled inside...'

Prophetic Offers Lucid Dreaming Halo With Morpheus-1 AI
''Leads trail away from insertion points on her face and wrist... to a lucid dreamer...'

More Like A Tumblebug Than A Motorcycle
'It is about the size and shape of a kitchen stool, gyro-stabilized on a single wheel...'

Tesla Camera-Only Vision Predicted In 1930's SF
'By its means, the machine can see.'

First Ever Proof Of Water On Asteroids
'Yes, strangely enough there was still sufficient water beneath the surface of Vesta.'

Aptera Solar EV More Stylish Than Heinlein Steel Tortoise
'When confronted by hills, or rough terrain, it did not stop, but simply slowed until the task demanded equaled its steady power output.'

Gigantic Space Sunshade Would Fight Global Warming
'...the light of the sun had been polarized by two crossed fields so that no radiation could pass.'

Untethered Spacewalk's 50th Anniversary
'But that space walk of mine wasn't so very amazing.'

ESA Designs Huge Inflatable Moonbase
'It was like being inside a balloon; indeed, that was exactly where he was.'

AlphaGarden Robot Cares For Gardens Better Than Humans
'...a simple clock-set servok with pipe and hose arms.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

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

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.