Here are six great examples of science fiction authors who truly inspired new technology.
Verne may not have invented the submarine or helicopter directly, but both were described in his novels. Most people think of the submarine when he is mentioned. Simon Lake, who built Argonaut Jr. in 1894, was inspired by reading Verne's Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. This craft was the first submarine used successfully in open water. In a very thoughtful gesture, Verne sent Lake a note congratulating him on this accomplishment.
One of Verne's lesser-known works, The Clipper of the Clouds, inspired Igor Sikorsky, the father of the modern helicopter, who was known to quote the author. Unfortunately, no note was forthcoming. Verne died in 1905, well before Sikorsky's helicopter was invented.