The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today

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Nearly three decades since the demise of the Soviet Union, this photo gallery offers you a glimpse into how the people of the USSR imagined the world of the 21st century and what kind of technological marvels they thought would appear then.

Nuclear-powered supersonic planes, cities built atop straits, flying weather control stations — these are just a few of the inventions envisioned by the Soviets decades ago as they tried to imagine what the future would look like.

© Photo : Diafilm 1960, MoscowHigh school students of the future use a device called "time magnifying glass" to see how their country was built. A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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High school students of the future use a device called "time magnifying glass" to see how their country was built. A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
© Photo : Diafilm 1960, MoscowFuturistic machinery is being used to construct bridges spanning "bottomless mountain gorges". A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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Futuristic machinery is being used to construct bridges spanning "bottomless mountain gorges". A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
© Photo : Diafilm 1960, MoscowA high school student is being woken up by a clock "designed as a joke by his father, an employee of the Central Weather Control Institute". A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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A high school student is being woken up by a clock "designed as a joke by his father, an employee of the Central Weather Control Institute". A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
© Photo : Diafilm 1960, MoscowAutomated cooking machine in action; instructions are being fed into the device via a handwritten note slipped into a slot. A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
4/20
Automated cooking machine in action; instructions are being fed into the device via a handwritten note slipped into a slot. A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
© Photo : Diafilm 1960, MoscowMother talks with her son via a "televideophone" from aboard a kindergarten cruise ship. A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
5/20
Mother talks with her son via a "televideophone" from aboard a kindergarten cruise ship. A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
© Photo : Diafilm 1960, MoscowPeople board an escalator leading to an underground city. A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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People board an escalator leading to an underground city. A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
© Photo : Diafilm 1960, MoscowPeople tour the streets of Uglegrad, an underground city where citizens "sunbathe on a beach under a quartz sun" while a vicious snowstorm rages on the surface. A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
7/20
People tour the streets of Uglegrad, an underground city where citizens "sunbathe on a beach under a quartz sun" while a vicious snowstorm rages on the surface. A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip.
© Photo : Diafilm 1960, MoscowA scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip: An underground resort.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip: An underground resort.
© Photo : Diafilm 1960, MoscowA scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip: Tornadoes on the Black Sea coast.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip: Tornadoes on the Black Sea coast.
© Photo : Diafilm 1960, MoscowA scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip: A flying weather control station soars above Moscow.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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A scene from the "In Year 2017" filmstrip: A flying weather control station soars above Moscow.
© Photo : Tekhnika Molodezhi, 1974The project of a gigantic "dam city" that would span the Bering Strait in year 2000. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1974.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
11/20
The project of a gigantic "dam city" that would span the Bering Strait in year 2000. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1974.
© Photo : Tekhnika Molodezhi, 1955A nuclear-powered supersonic aircraft which would be capable of staying in the air for months. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1955.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
12/20
A nuclear-powered supersonic aircraft which would be capable of staying in the air for months. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1955.
© Photo : Tekhnika Molodezhi, 1937The project of an underground city. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1937.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
13/20
The project of an underground city. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1937.
© Photo : Tekhnika Molodezhi, 1939Commercial fishing of the future.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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Commercial fishing of the future.
© Photo : Tekhnika Molodezhi (1940)"Underwater War of the Future". Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1940.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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"Underwater War of the Future". Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1940.
© Photo : Tekhnika Molodezhi (1939)The drawing of an improved spiral turbine steam engine, along with a train, a car and a ship powered by it. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1939.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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The drawing of an improved spiral turbine steam engine, along with a train, a car and a ship powered by it. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1939.
© Photo : Tekhnika Molodezhi (1939)Unseen magnetic field which disables battle tanks and vehicles. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1939.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
17/20
Unseen magnetic field which disables battle tanks and vehicles. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1939.
© Photo : Tekhnika Molodezhi (1975)Multi-level car park. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1975.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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Multi-level car park. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1975.
© Photo : Tekhnika Molodezhi (1938)Flying car of the future. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1938.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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Flying car of the future. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1938.
© Photo : Tekhnika Molodezhi (1938)A drawing of the so called "bathistat" - a huge elevator that moves people and cargo to from surface to the ocean floor. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1938.
The Future is Now: How Soviet People Envisioned the World Today - Sputnik International
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A drawing of the so called "bathistat" - a huge elevator that moves people and cargo to from surface to the ocean floor. Soviet popular science magazine Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth), 1938.
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