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Entries in personal transport vehicle (5)


Flying Machines Allow Your Lover a Quick Escape (1901)


It doesn't get much better than saucy French futurism, does it? These illustrations of futuristic flying machines from 1901 are quite similar to both the German and French personal flying machines we've looked at from this era.

I find the electric lights adorning her hat and dress quite beautiful. Early electric light and the way it was described in such poetic terms at the turn of the twentieth century truly leaves me in awe. Strangely enough, I caught myself asking, "but where is the power source for those lights?!?!!" all the while ignoring how absurd a system of dangerously placed propellors and wings would be for human flight. 

If my universal language translator can be trusted (actually, I used Babelfish), "au siecle prochain," means "in the next century," and "comment on suivra les femmes," translates to, "how women will be followed." The illustration below appears to be of a lover making his hasty escape out the window, as madame's husband arrives home. 

Below are images from previous blog posts on German postcards (circa 1900) and French prints (1910). A special thanks to Scott Lesch for the black and white images above.


Previously on Paleo-Future:



French Flying Machines (1890-1900)

These French cards, archived at the Library of Congress, were produced sometime between 1890 and 1900. Most of the cards illustrate important feats from ballooning history between 1795-1846, while card number two (pictured above) depicts futuristic visions of flight from the 1800s. It's striking how similar these imagined flying machines are to those we looked at from 1885.

The Paleo-Future Store features button sets of those paleo-futuristic flying machines from 1885, which you can check out here.

Les utopies de la navigation aérienne au siècle dernier

Read more:
Flying Machines (circa 1885)
French Prints Show the Year 2000 (1910)
Boy's Flying Machine of the 20th Century (1900)
Futuristic Air Travel (circa 1900)
Going to the Opera in the Year 2000 (1882)
Postcards Show the Year 2000 (circa 1900)



Robot Drivers (1985)

The 1985 book The World of Robots contains this image of a future city. Complete with domes, personal transport vehicles and apparently robots at the wheel. The caption to the illustration appears below.

As city life grows more complex and crowded, the need for large-scale control of environment and equipment will demand robotic hands at the helms of trains and boats and planes everywhere.

See also:
Lisa's Picture of 2076 (1976)



Progress to Counter Catastrophe Theory? (1975)

The November 24, 1975 Middlesboro Daily News (Middlesboro, Kentucky) ran an editorial countering the "catastrophe theory" predictions made by the Club of Rome. Per usual, neither party got everything right. Excerpts appear below, along with the piece in its entirety.

In health care, for example, a cure for cancer will be found by 1995 and will be generally available in the early 21st Century.

Closer to the present, it's felt that within two years doctors should be able to detect most genetic defects before birth and be able to prevent them by the 1990s.

In transportation, an all plastic car, except for engine and drive train, will be common by 1990. So will the electric car. The service-free, accident-proof automobile is expected to be in widespread use by the year 2000.

Ditto for automated urban transit, after becoming technologically possible in 1985 and economically feasible 10 years later.

Also by 1995, aerospace experts predict an economic alternative to petroleum fuel and full use of it by 2010.

See also:
The Futurists of 1966 Looking Toward A.D. 2000
Health Care in 1994 (1973)
Headlines of the Near Future (1972)
Closer Than We Think! Monoline Express (1961)
The Population Bomb: Scenario 1 (1970)
The Population Bomb: Scenario 2 (1970)
The Population Bomb: Scenario 3 (1970)
Future Without Football (Daily Review, 1976)
Going Backward into 2000 (1966)



Fuller's Traveling Cartridge (circa 1960s)

This concept drawing by Buckminster Fuller looks to have a lot in common with the airport of the future article we looked at last week.

The illustration was found in the excellent 1968 book Transportation in the World of the Future.

See also:
Airport of the Future (1967)
Disney's Magic Highway, U.S.A. (1958)
The Most Well-Documented Lives in History