Friday, December 2, 2011

Archive Gallery: The Best of What Was New

From climate-controlled clothing to Viagra, the first 10 years of PopSci's Best Of What's New

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.

That's what's great about BOWN. Not only do we feature military inventions, like bombers that are invisible to radar, or ambitious research projects, like the Pathfinder rover shown up top, we showcase technology that's on the verge of becoming part of people's everyday lives. Elliptical machines, DVDs and even Viagra have all been featured in our annual list of the 100 best science and technology achievements.

Some of the innovations of the past we've picked out for this week's archive gallery are landmark government projects, some are the very beginnings of what now feels like everyday technology, and some are just fun. But there's no way we could give you a full picture in just one gallery, so if you're in the mood for a trip down memory lane, we recommend taking a look through the archives yourself.

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