October 1, 2021

She picked her phone up off the coffee table. It was a hand-sized, rectangular device, similar in appearance to a mirror, but when imbued with electrical energy, its surface would display images and glyphs that responded to her touch. The smartphone was one of the most revolutionary technological advances of the twenty-first century. Its primary function was as a communication device, allowing her to send her voice, her image, or messages she typed onto the screen to others who possessed similar devices, but it also allowed her to search compiled records of human knowledge for any information she desired, listen to music, and watch pre-recorded theatrical performances, known as "movies--"
That bit about a reader of a story being annoyed by the the house-out-of-no-where of a flashlight reminds me I think I need to replace my pocketknife. Wonder if they make a pocketknife case for phones…
After a short wait, they were ushered onto the plane with the other passengers. The plane was an enormous steel cylinder at least a hundred meters long, with sleek backswept wings on which four jet engines were mounted. They glanced into the front cabin and saw the two pilots, consulting a bank of equipment needed the fly the plane. Roger was glad that he did not need to fly the plane himself; it was a difficult profession which required years of training.

The surprisingly large passenger area was equipped with soft benches, and windows through which they could look down at the countryside as they flew 11 km high at more than 800 km/h. There were nozzles for the pressurized air which kept the atmosphere in the cabin warm and comfortable despite the coldness of the stratosphere.

"I'm a little nervous," Ann said, before the plane took off.

"There's nothing to worry about," he assured her. "These flights are entirely routine. You're safer than you are in our ground transport cars!"
(Matt McIrvin pointed me to that on FB. Which is the kind of thing explaining why I'm still on FB!)