Imagine you want to talk to someone over great distances of space.
A mobile phone isn’t going to work. You’ll need something way more powerful.
In Ursula Le Guin’s 1966 book, Rocannon’s World, she invented such a device. It could receive messages and then send them within a reasonable amount of time. It allowed users to communicate over star systems.
She called the device an ansible. According to Wikipedia, the word was a contraction of “answerable.”
This invention and its name have shown up in other works of science fiction such as Orson Scott Card’s 1977 version of Ender’s Game.
No epic space story is any good without the ability to communicate with other ships over light distances. Ansible is a great invention and term.
In some stories, they don’t bother naming the device that makes it possible to communicate over such distances. Perhaps they lack the imagination for naming things.
What’s another good name for a telephone that allows ships to communicate over great distances of space?
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ABOUT T.S. VALMOND:
T.S. Valmond is the science fiction and young adult fantasy author of The Bolaji Kingdoms Series and The Verity Chronicles. As an award-winning poet, world traveler, and sign language interpreter she uses her experiences to fuel her stories. She’s a regular contributor to the website and founder of the Riders & Flyers group.