As humanity reached for the stars, transportation technology developed at a far quicker pace than communication. Even with faster-than-light technology exchanging information with the farthest systems took weeks.
This was the situation until the invention of the ansible, which name, curiously, comes from an old book. It is an instantaneous data exchange device allowing our civilisation to stay in contact across the systems and galaxies.
The device was invented by Michael Hainish at the Emory Institute on the planet Rocannon and, pardon the pun, instantly gained popularity as the communication technology to unite the stars.
The ansible array pictured above is on planet Zonn III. It serves as a wideband transfer relay between the nearby systems and the farthest reaches of the inhabited universe.