paleofuture logo sm.jpg

Welcome to the Paleofuture blog, where we explore past visions of the future. From flying cars and jetpacks to utopias and dystopias.

Television: Medium of the Future (1949)

The 1949 book Television: Medium of the Future by Maurice Gorham correctly identifies, but dismisses, a concern about the visual age: voting with your eyes.

Fears have been expressed lest this new reliance on television may lead to choice of candidates for their face rather than their real qualities; that the film-star types will have it all their own way. Personally I see no reason to think that this is a greater danger than we have faced in the radio age. Is it worse to vote for a man whom you have seen and heard than for a man whom you have heard but never seen except for fleeting glimpses in photographs and films? Is there any more reason why a man who is good on television should be a charlatan than a man who is good on radio? Or any inherent merit in a fine radio voice uttering speeches written by somebody else?

Many people ask if Abraham Lincoln could be elected today (he was an ugly, ugly man). What do you think? Is a candidate's appearance kind of like advertising, everyone believes it only works on other people?

3D Copier of the Future (1979)

3D Copier of the Future (1979)

The Electronic Newspaper (1978)