At the dawn of Prohibition, the future of happy hour looked bleak, but PopSci's archives reveal that within every speakeasy resides a science lab, and within every bootlegger, an unlikely inventor or chemist
The future of breweries looked dim on January 16, 1919, when the Eighteenth Amendment and the accompanying Volstead Act banned the manufacture, sale, and transportation of intoxicating beverages. Unsurprisingly, the black market was more than happy to help people drink without getting caught.
Popular Science had some ideas too.
Last May, we had the privilege of visiting Expo 2010 in Shanghai, where we got first looks at the inventive pavilions. Where else, other than at an international exposition, can you tour a spiny Seed Cathedral or make contact with a giant robotic baby?
Since their inception, World's Fairs have whisked millions of visitors to far-off places: Lisbon, Osaka, New York, and, of course, the future. The tradition of World's Fairs goes back to 1851, when London hosted the Great Exhibition in Hyde Park's Crystal Palace. Between then and Expo 2010, World's Fairs have evolved from industrial exhibitions to platforms for cross-cultural dialogue, to vehicles for promoting the host countries themselves.
It's hard to look at military spending without wondering what's behind the scenes.. For instance, in this month's issue of Popular Science, we investigate what exactly the Pentagon is getting for the $58 billion it has dropped on classified assassination weapons.
A peek in our archives revealed that Popular Science has a long history of investigating top-secret operations. We didn't hesitate to publish an expose on "loony gas" warfare in 1960, nor did we refrain from sending one of our reporters into Groom Lake's unofficial airfield.
We've heard it said that Rome wasn't built in a day. And while Popular Science isn't old enough to have witnessed the Colosseum going up, we have covered in our pages some of the 20th century's most important architectural achievements rise from nothing but a dream and a blueprint.
We've combed the archives to gather some of our most important first looks at the buildings and structures that went on to define skylines around the world.
In between sausage balloons, elegant blimps and ill-fated steam planes, yesterday's archive gallery on aviation yielded a fantastic array of old-school flying machines. After hearing of the Wright brothers' success at Kitty Hawk, most people were eager to see airplanes drop bombs or transport passengers across the Atlantic, but one Popular Science writer contemplated a hilariously sinister alternative for aerial technology.
The closer we get to the year 2015, the louder people lament that our world hardly resembles the one depicted in Back to the Future II. Although it will be awhile before any of us coast around in a flying Delorean, we've piped down our complaints, as a young French artist named Nils Guadagnin has built an exact, actually-hovering replica of Marty McFly's pink hoverboard.
The loss of a tooth is a minor deformity and a major pain. Although dental implants are available, the healing process can take months on end, and implants that fail to align with the ever-growing jawbone tend to fall out. If only adult teeth could be regenerated, right?
According to a study published in the latest Journal of Dental Research, a new tissue regeneration technique may allow people to simply regrow a new set of pearly whites.
Charles Darwin's theories of evolution have revolutionized the way mankind understands its origin. Now, engineers suggest that the process of natural selection may have surprising implications for spacecraft as well. An ion engine designed to power future spacecraft has achieved its optimal design via software that simulates Darwinian evolution.
For two years, Charles Okeke, 43, was just another patient confined to a hospital while awaiting a human heart transplant. Now, he's the country's first test subject for a battery-operated, backpack-sized console, called the Freedom Driver, which will power his artificial heart and allow him to go home for the first time in two years.