In response to a question related to multi-touch user interfaces this answer states:
Prior art as published
Multi-touch computer pads were used throughout the television show Star Trek: The Next Generation, which ran from 1987 to 1994. Additionally, the technologies were described in detail in the book "The Star Trek Encyclopedia".
That leads me to a question whether a fictious technology mentioned in a science fiction work, when described in sufficient technical detail, can ever be submitted as a valid prior art?
Note: Personally, I don't think so, because it is the result of the authors imagination, not a result of a scientific process. However, it would be interesting to read arguments for and against from a subject matter expert.