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Editor’s Note: Stephen Coonts is a Vietnam veteran and the author of over 40 books of fiction and non-fiction including the bestselling Flight of the Intruder. Barrett Tillman has also authored over 40 books, mostly on naval and aviation topics, including On Yankee Station.

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Editor's Note: Michael J. Boyle is Associate Professor  of Political Science at Rutgers Camden and a Senior Fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute in Philadelphia.

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By now, in the second decade of the 21st century, even pointing out the cliché has itself become a cliché. Namely, the frustrated tongue-in-cheek query favored by stand-up comics, science fiction geeks, social commentators, and technology critics: where’s my flying car? Which is generally followed by yet another tired old chestnut: the observation that the question has come to symbolize some failure of technological optimism, scientific advancement, or the supposed predictive powers of science fiction.

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