It Doesn't Have To Be Right…

… it just has to sound plausible

The future we used to have, part 5


Perhaps at one point last century the future was so bright because of all those nuclear bombs exploding – at least, so they imagined. But they were also wildly optimistic about what the twenty-first century would hold. And it certainly wasn’t double-dip recessions, an ever-widening equity gap, anthropogenic global warming, and rule 34. Sometimes they built the future as they saw it, sometimes they just drew it. Either way, it appeals more than what we actually got…


Palace of the Soviets. B Iofan, O Gelfreikh, V Schuko, sculptor S Merkulov - 1934 version

Palace of the Soviets. B Iofan, O Gelfreikh V Schuko, sculptor S Merkulov - 1946 version

Rusakov Workers' Club

Le Corbusier House

Brastoff Factory, Julius Shulman

Palácio da Alvorada, Oscar Niemeyer


V-Bombers: Vickers Valiant (source:

V-Bombers: Handley Page Victor (source:

V-Bombers: Avro Vulcan (source:

Northrop YB-35 Flying wing cockpit


Aquarius Underwater Laboratory (source: NOAA)

Inside Aquarius Underwater Laboratory


Moon Ships (from Collier's Magazine, 1953)

Inside the Moon Ship (from Collier's Magazine, 1953)


3 thoughts on “The future we used to have, part 5

  1. Hi ian. just wanted to say ‘thanks’ for these posts, really enjoy them. I love old futuristic design, has a habit of looking better than what we end up with.
    editor – jupiter magazine

  2. Aquarius is the site of NEEMO, which is a continuing mission
    It is good to see that at least part of our future has a future.

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