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

"We were essentially being shell-shocked by rapid change. That was one of the things you needed science-fiction writers for back in the Sixties, because we could cope with the future."
- Peter Watts

Subvocal Input Device  
  Attached sensors read nerve signals to determine what the user will say next.  

She took a subvocal input device from its rack and placed the attached sensors on her throat, jaw, and temples. A faint glitter in the display screens meant the machine was already tracking her eyes, noting by curvature of lens and angle of pupil the exact spot on which she focused at any moment.

She didn't have to speak aloud, only intend to. The subvocal read nerve signals, letting her enter words by just beginning to will them. It was much faster than any normal speech input device... and more cantankerous as well. Jen adjusted the sensitivity level so it wouldn't pick up each tiny tremor - a growing problem as her once athletic body turned wiry and inexact with age. Still, she vowed to hold onto this rare skill as long as possible.

Technovelgy from Earth, by David Brin.
Published by Bantam in 1990
Additional resources -

The author adds

Sometimes, under a talented operator, a subvocal could seem almost magical, like those "direct" brain-to-brain computer links science fiction writers were always jabbering about, but which, for simple neurological reasons, had never become real.

Compare to the implanted transceiver from Frank Herbert's 1972 novel The Godmakers.

Here are a couple of science fiction writers who have, indeed, written about a direct interface (John Varley, 1984) and a communications implant (Jerry Pournelle and Larry Niven, 1981). As it turns out, there are ways that a direct connection can be made between the brain and a device - see the Thinking Man's Wheelchair.

As I recall, Clint Eastwood used a similar 'device' in Firefox, a fairly cool 1982 movie about a technologically advanced jet fighter. To activate its missile system, you had to think the commands - in Russian, no less. Fortunately, Eastwood's character was up to the challenge.

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

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Earth
  More Ideas and Technology by David Brin
  Tech news articles related to Earth
  Tech news articles related to works by David Brin

Subvocal Input Device-related news articles:
  - Audeo Neckband Voiceless Phone Calls
  - NASA's Subvocal Speech System
  - MIT Headset Lets You Communicate Without Speaking

Articles related to Input Device
MIT Headset Lets You Communicate Without Speaking
Tongue Mouse Created By Valve Engineer
Skinput Uses Your Skin As An Input Device
AcceleGlove Open-Source Data Glove

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

Shanghai Guidelines For Humanoid Robots
'Now, look, let's start with the three fundamental Rules of Robotics...'

Desktop TARS Robot From Interstellar
What's YOUR sarcasm setting?

Robots Can Now Have Smiling Faces With Human Skin
'I am a cybernetic organism...'

Virtual Rat Predicts Actual Rat Neural Activity
'..the synthetic intellects at the Place of Knowledge had far outstripped the minds of men.'

GoSun EV Solar Charger Drapes Onto Your Car
'...six square yards of sunpower screens.'

Rizon 4 Ironing Robot
'But after washing and drying clothes had to be smooth - free from fine lines and wrinkles ...'

Cognify - A Prison Of The Mind We've Seen Before In SF
'So I serve a hundred years in one day...'

Robot With Human Brain Organoid - 'A Thrilling Story Of Mechanistic Progress'
'A human brain snugly encased in a transparent skull-shaped receptacle.'

Goodness Gracious Me! Google Tries Face Recognition Security
'The actuating mechanism that should have operated by the imprint of her image on the telephoto cell...'

With Mycotecture, We'll Just Grow The Space Habitats We Need
'The only real cost was in the plastic balloon that guided the growth of the coral and enclosed the coral's special air-borne food.'

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.