Wednesday, July 04, 2007


Happy Fourth of July! No fireworks from me, but in honor of the holiday, I offer something cool I stumbled across this morning.

This site features an extensive collection of science fiction technologies, broken down by the time period in which the stories were written, and also a collection of recent news articles featuring new technological developments that seem like they were ripped from the pages of a sci-fi novel.

For example, did you read about the new memory erasing drug in the news? (Scary stuff, in my opinion. I can see why PTSD patients might need something like that, but there is phenomenal potential for abuse, if it is possible to effectively delete any memory.) has not only an article on the drug, with tie-ins to the idea's sci-fi roots, but also a separate entry for the original instance, in Philip K. Dick's 1966 story "We Can Remember It For You Wholesale."

The only complaint I have about the site is the lack of a search box. Boo, hiss! Of course, it's easy to get around that with a Google search limited by site. Just include the following in your Google search box along with your other search terms:


The site even includes some inventions that seem like sci-fi, but were actually real machines that have since passed out of use and been forgotten. Check out this message machine from the 1930s, like an early, mechanical version of Twitter.

It's a very neat archive of cool, creepy, and weird ideas. Seems like a fun place to poke around. Or if you have something that really interests you, you can find out which sci-fi stories you ought to be checking out at the library.

Have a happy and safe Fourth everyone!

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