Now that Food Tech week is winding down here at PopSci, it's time to sit back, rest our hands on the shelves of our full bellies and listen to the old timers tell us a few yarns about back in their day.
By Martin MannPosted 06.14.2012 at 6:30 pm 5 Comments
This article originally appeared in the April 1961 issue of Popular Science. You can explore more of our archives--stretching back 140 years--here.Git along, little hippo. The romantic days of the open range may come back--in Africa, and with a native twist. Great herds of elephants, hippopotamuses, and eland, rounded up by dark-skinned wranglers (hippoboys?), [2012 note: eeeeeep] could supply desperately needed meat for the fast-growing, hungry continent.
By R. BenreyPosted 06.11.2012 at 12:29 pm 8 Comments
This article originally appeared in the April 1968 issue of Popular Science. You can explore more of our archives--stretching back 140 years--here.
A baked potato in six minutes flat...piping-hot biscuits in about 20 seconds...a sirloin steak (rare) in five minutes--these days my wife can cook elaborate dinners, made with fresh food, in less time than it takes to read the directions on a TV dinner. Her secret is our new microwave oven, made by International Crystal Mfg. Co., 10 N Lee St., Oklahoma City.
Despite having a readership made up mostly of men, Popular Sciences of old knew their way around a beauty parlor. Especially from the 20s to the 40s, PopSci offered makeup tips and advice to female readers, saying in effect "Look! We've got incredibly detailed cutaways of how things work AND beauty knowhow! What more could you want?"
When scientists take a break from studying, researching or inventing to devise a practical joke, the stakes are sky-high, sometimes literally. Who else can dangle a car off a bridge, or pull out a monster mask on a space station? A look into our archives finds an abundance of wild prankery.
By Ryan BradleyPosted 04.24.2012 at 11:59 am 61 Comments
The complete back issues of this magazine—all 1,680 of them—are stored in a walk-in closet in our New York offices. We don’t often visit the place. It’s musty and locked, and only one person keeps a key. But to put together our May issue on the Future of Flight, which arrives the same month that Edward L. Youmans founded Popular Science Monthly in 1872, we spent many hours there. During our sojourn, things took a turn for the strange.
We don't see a lot of cryptozoology - the study of animals that have not yet been proven to exist - in the pages of PopSci these days, but that's what we have the archives for. Buried within the decades upon decades of "real" science, filled with "facts" and "research" are some gems of articles, where we chart the progress of believers searching for creatures we strongly suspect they may never find, but secretly hope they will.
The Newton Project, a UK organization that's putting the complete works of Isaac Newton online, is featuring an amazing list of 48 "sins" that 19-year-old Isaac committed in 1662, according to a list he wrote. The young genius was both very pious and very peevish, having punched his sister, poked Iohn Keys with a pin, and even threatened to burn down his stepfather's house.
And all this before Whitsunday!
Considering I was between the ages of -2 and 8 for the first 10 installments of the Best of What's New, it's remarkable how many vivid memories I have of the 1980s' and '90s' greatest innovations. I owned and loved the computer game that let you print out clothes for your Barbies. My dad taught me the rules of hockey by watching Red Wings games with me on Fox, where infrared technology left a streak of color behind the fast-moving puck so I could follow it. And I even built and programmed a Lego Mindstorms robot at nerd camp one summer.
I have never understood why people who aren't circus clowns ride unicycles. They seem designed specifically to create wipeouts and, subsequently, schadenfreude (a lesson our writer learned all too well in 1967 when he undertook the massive challenge of learning to ride one). But who knew that tucked away in the pages of PopScis past were some of the weirdest, most delightfully retro-futuristic unicycles of all time? Now we all do. And I don't think it's a stretch to say our lives are all the better for it.