It began as a project for the 1900 World Exhibition in Paris. Jean-Marc Côté and other French artists issued a series of illustrations from 1899 through 1910 depicting their vision of the future. There are ideas reminiscent of the Jetsons. Inventions that don’t seem so far fetched which I eagerly await.
There are many ideas related to harnessing the power of animals to transport people, a la The Flintstones. Their ideas of exploration center on the ocean, including underwater croquet. I assume traveling to the stars hadn’t entered their consciousness as a possibility yet and electric power was still in the invention stages.
But the most common depiction is people flying to do every job and chore under the sun, be it wings, zeppelins, airplanes or other flying apparatus that never came to be. There are 87 known illustrations, some of which can be seen by clicking the photos to follow the source link.
Most of these inventions are wholly impractical but a few stand out as possible, or at least an idea of something I wouldn’t mind having in my own home. They would probably terrorize my cats, but a robot that kept the litter box clean would be a pleasure.
- via Kottke