Thursday, January 1, 2015

The Wonderful World of Tomorrow

Two Astronauts View Saturn From Titan's Surface

"Here's to the bright New Year, and a fond farewell to the old; here's to the things that are yet to come, and to the memories that we hold." ~ Author unknown

"Let us move on, and step out boldly, though it be into the night, and we can scarcely see the way." ~ Charles B. Newcomb

The New Year of 2015 promises to be as exhilarating as the previous year of 2014 for those of us at Far Future Horizons  as we continue to work towards the exploration and settlement of the exciting new frontiers of sea, space and to chart the human journey across time and space.

Far Future Horizons is all about exploration, discovery, and stepping forward to face future challenges boldly and decisively. The existential threats facing our global civilization are many but; we firmly believe that there are no limits to the growth and the future prosperity of the human species. Human inventiveness and ingenuity can help us surmount any problem or obstacle in our path. This is the message that this blog site hopes to convey to its readers in this New Year of 2015 and beyond.

So on behalf of all of us here at Far Future Horizons I invite you, dear readers, to step out boldly, though it be into the night, and we can scarcely see the way to the wonderful year ahead of 2015! Happy New Year One and All!

The theme of today’s five video features presents both a retrospective and prospective concerning “The Wonderful World of Tomorrow”.

The Future as Seen from the New York World's Fair
1939 New York World’s Fair

Our first video feature today concern’s the 1939 New York World’s Fair and the original General Motors Futurama. In 1935, at the height of the Great Depression, a group of New York City retired policemen decided to create an international exposition to lift the city and the country out of depression. Not long after, these men formed the New York World's Fair Corporation, whose office was placed on one of the higher floors in the Empire State Building.

The NYWFC elected former chief of police Grover Whalen as the president of their committee. The committee included Winthrop Aldrich, Mortimer Buckner, Floyd Carlisle, Ashley T. Cole, John J. Dunnigan, Harvey Dow Gibson, Mayor Fiorello La Guardia, Percy S. Straus, and many other business leaders.

The Original 1939 General Motors Futurama Exhibit 

View of the 1964 New York World's Fair

Our second video feature is about the 1964 New York World's Fair and General Motors’ Second Futurama ride which was updated for the 1964 fair.

The 1964/1965 New York World's Fair was the third major world's fair to be held in New York City. Hailing itself as a "universal and international" exposition, the fair's theme was "Peace Through Understanding," dedicated to "Man's Achievement on a Shrinking Globe in an Expanding Universe"; although American corporations dominated the exposition as exhibitors. The theme was symbolized by a 12-story high, stainless-steel model of the earth called Unisphere. The fair ran for two six-month seasons, April 22–October 18, 1964 and April 21–October 17, 1965. Admission price for adults (13 and older) was $2.00 in 1964 but $2.50 in 1965, and $1.00 for children (2–12) both years.

The site, Flushing Meadows Corona Park in the borough of Queens, had also held the 1939/1940 New York World’s Fair.

It was one of the largest world's fairs to be held in the United States, occupying nearly a square mile (2.6 km²) of land. The only larger fair was the 1939 fair, which occupied space that was filled in for the 1964/1965 exposition. Preceding these fairs was the 1853-54 New York’s World’s Fair, called the Exhibition of the Industry of All Nations, located on the site of Bryant Park in the borough of Manhattan, New York City.

The fair is best remembered as a showcase of mid-20th century American culture and technology. The nascent Space Age, with its vista of promise, was well-represented. More than 51 million people attended the fair, less than the hoped-for 70 million. It remains a touchstone for New York–area Baby Boomers, who visited the optimistic fair as children before the turbulent years of the Vietnam War, cultural changes, and increasing struggles for civil rights.

This updated version offered its riders a glimpse into what life in the year 2024 would be like. the second video feature for today is promotional film by General Motors follows a young boy as he explores a lunar base of operation, an Antarctic weather forecasting centre, undersea exploration and the typical positive 1960s thinking about the future of American design and living. The ride itself was one of the most popular attractions at the fair with over 25 million passengers during the 6 months it was open and the building which housed it was one of the largest buildings ever built for the 1964 New York World's Fair.

How ironic that this optimistic vision of tomorrow would be marred just a decade later by the energy crisis and mounting concerns over environmental degradation.

64-65 NY World's Fair General Motors Futurama II Exhibit 

Naked Science - City Under the Sea 
A Future Undersea City

Our third video feature is Naked Science - “City Under the Sea” which features my good friend, Dennis Chamberland.

Naked Science - City Under the Sea 

National Geographic City Under the Sea: by Tenoch2012

L5 First City in Space 

Our fourth video feature for today is the IMAX motion picture L5 First City in Space which is firmly rooted in the work of space visionary Gerard K. O'Neill and outlined in his ground breaking book “The High Frontier: Human Colonies in Space”. With great eloquence O’Neill showed my generation of the 1970s, reeling from the political aftermath of Watergate, the Arab oil embargo, the dire predictions of the Club of Rome, and the soaring gasoline prices, that there were no limits to growth or the future prosperity of the human species. O’Neil’s vision provided my generation a clear and hopeful message - There are no limits to growth but only limits to human imagination and nerve.

IMAX L5 First City in Space 

The Future by Design 

Future Cities Designed by Jacque Fresco

Our final video feature for today is entitled “The Future by Design”.

This documentary concerns the life and far-reaching vision of Jacque Fresco, considered by many to be a modern day Da Vinci. Peer to Einstein and Buckminster Fuller, Jacque is a self-taught futurist who describes himself most often as a generalist or multi-disciplinarian – a student of many inter-related fields. He is a prolific inventor, having spent his entire life (he is now 90 years old) conceiving of and devising inventions on various scales which entail the use of innovative technology. As a futurist, Jacque is not only a conceptualist and a theoretician, but he is also an engineer and a designer.

The Future by Design 

Copyright Disclaimer
Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use.

No comments:

Post a Comment