Articles by Matt Novak

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The Paleofuture Blog Has Moved to Gizmodo

Our intrepid blogger bids farewell

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The National Automated Highway System That Almost Was

In 1991, Congress authorized $650 million to develop the technology that would make driverless cars a reality

Cover of the 1982 book Omni Future Almanac

$18 for a Dozen Eggs by 2010? Inflation Fears in 1982

The Omni Future Almanac predicted that a gallon of gas would be cheaper than a quart of milk

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Predictions for Privacy in the Age of Facebook (from 1985!)

Mark Zuckerberg wasn't even a year old when a graduate student foresaw the emergence of online personal profiles

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Nobody Walks in L.A.: The Rise of Cars and the Monorails That Never Were

As strange as it may seem today, the automobile was seen by many as the progressive solution to the transportation problems of Los Angeles

Children of the 1980s Build Their Cities of Tomorrow

Kids tend to be pretty optimistic, but each generation betrays its own fears about the future

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Nikola Tesla’s Amazing Predictions for the 21st Century

The famed inventor believed "the solution of our problems does not lie in destroying but in mastering the machine"

A Peek Into the Jetsons Archive at Warner Brothers Animation

See some early sketches of the cartoon family that shaped our vision of what life would be like in the 21st century

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One World Government and the War of Tomorrow

In 1950, journalist Vincent Sheean argued that renouncing national sovereignty was the only way to prevent nuclear war

Portion of a magazine ad for Friedman-Shelby shoes showing an American family watching TV (1954)

TV Will Tear Us Apart: The Future of Political Polarization in American Media

In 1969, Internet pioneer Paul Baran predicted that specialized new media would undermine national cohesion

Holographic home computer game of the future from the 1981 book Tomorrow’s Home by Neil Ardley

Disney Kills LucasArts, My Childhood

When LucasArts was first starting out in the 1980s, the future of video games included holograms, virtual reality headsets and worldwide networking

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The Jetsons Get Schooled: Robot Teachers in the 21st Century Classroom

Elroy gets in trouble with his robot teacher as we recap the final episode from its first season

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Ban Everything: Concern Over Future Blue Laws During the Lead Up to Alcohol Prohibition

If they can ban alcohol, whats next? No baseball?

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Sad Jetsons: Depression, Buttonitis and Nostalgia in the World of Tomorrow

All Jane needs to recover from a case of the blues is a little bit of 19th century Americana

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Postwar Dreams of Flying in Style

The Northrup Flying Wing promised a luxurious experience for the air traveler of tomorrow

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Projection Chic: Jane Jetson Tries on Clothes in the Future

As we move closer to the Jetsonian vision of choosing outfits, privacy has gone out of fashion

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The Newspaper of Tomorrow: 11 Predictions from Yesteryear

eNewspapers were being developed as far back as the 1930s

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Mid-21st Century Modern: That Jetsons Architecture

The artists and animators working on "The Jetsons" were inspired by the futurist architecture popping up around Los Angeles

Portion of the cover of the February 1989 issue of Life magazine

In 1989, 'Life' Magazine Said Goodbye To Video Stores, Mailmen and Pennies…

In 1989, "Life" magazine predicted that, by the year 2000, many staples of modern American life might find themselves on the scrapheap of history

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The American Plan to Build Nuclear Power Plants in the Ocean

This ill-advised scheme would have put gigantic barges just off the Atlantic coast? Where would it have started? New Jersey, of course

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