The Age of the Pussyfoot

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Pohl, Frederik, The Age of the Pussyfoot. Galaxy Science Fiction in three parts starting October 1966. New York: Ballantine Books, 1969. [1]

Praised by David Brin for its "modern techno-visionary prophecy" as one of the few "science fiction stories of the fifties through seventies that envisioned computers becoming common household tools, owned and used, avidly, by nearly everybody. In fact, to my knowledge it is just about the only work of prophetic fiction to foresee citizens carrying about portable, computerized assistants that would fulfill all the functions we now see gathering together in our futuristic cell phones. And you can bet I salivate for the even better versions he foresaw. Pohl's joymaker' device is as marvelous an on-target a prediction as Jules Verne predicting submarines or trips to the moon" ("Frederik Pohl — Architect of Worlds" in Gateways: 92). Joymaker:

The remote-access computer transponder called the "joymaker" is your most valuable single possession in your new life. If you can imagine a combination of telephone, credit card, alarm clock, pocket bar, reference library, and full-time secretary, you will have sketched some of the functions provided by your joymaker.[2]

Note also "cryopreservation banks,"[3] where people who can afford it are preserved after death to be revived at a later time.[4]

The website also praises Pohl's foresight, summarizing the novel and linking to sections where new technologies are presented.[5]

This is an amazing and prescient novel, set in 2527 A.D. Charles Forrester died in a fire in our time; he was frozen and brought back to life when technology (and his accumulated assets) permitted. Every aspect of life is mediated by Joymakers, remarkable PDAs that really are indispensable personal digital assistants. Great read. (Note that this novel appeared in a shortened version in Galaxy magazine in 1965 and 1966; the quotes are taken from the book version, which appeared in 1969.) Select an invention:
Big Screen Control - right from your personal device 
Caller Contact List - very early use 
Cellphone Credit Card - mobile phone wallet 
Cellphone Tranquilizing Spray 
Cellphone Voice Mail - very early use of concept 
Corpsicle - thaw and fix 
Death-Reversal Equipment 
Garbage Device 
Interests Profile - an intelligent agent 
Joymaker - the ultimate PDA 
Networked Personal Device - the backend is more important 
Online Employability Profile Testing - get the right job first 
Online Job Search - via cellphone 
Reciprocal Name - cellphone nickname 
Virtual Keyboard 
Virtual Kiss (Tactile Net) - affection by wire 
Virtual Reality Construct - VR without headgear 
Virtual Reality Video Game - very early description 
Voice Dialing 
Voice-Enabled Smartphone - I talk, it listens

RDE, Initial Compiler, 31Dec18