What 1950s Czechs Thought Our Kitchens Would Look Like

There’s something about the nice, round number of the year 2000 that appealed to forward-thinking types in the 1950s. Everyone had an idea of how we’d live (in the sky!), commute to work (in the sky!), and cure the common cold (research—in the sky!).

In 1957, a Czech short film demonstrated how women of the future might get around in the kitchen. While some of it is prescient—television shopping is indeed a thing—the idea of using punch cards to program small appliances is not yet a reality. We also can’t endorse the idea of idly putting your hands on a marble stovetop, even if you think it’s “completely cold.”

Check out the entire video to see how a giant glass bubble will future-cook a whole chicken any day now.

A Very Brief History of Chamber Pots

Some of the oldest chamber pots found by archeologists have been discovered in ancient Greece, but portable toilets have come a long way since then. Whether referred to as "the Jordan" (possibly a reference to the river), "Oliver's Skull" (maybe a nod to Oliver Cromwell's perambulating cranium), or "the Looking Glass" (because doctors would examine urine for diagnosis), they were an essential fact of life in houses and on the road for centuries. In this video from the Wellcome Collection, Visitor Experience Assistant Rob Bidder discusses two 19th century chamber pots in the museum while offering a brief survey of the use of chamber pots in Britain (including why they were particularly useful in wartime).

A Tour of the New York Academy of Medicine's Rare Book Room

The Rare Book Room at the New York Academy of Medicine documents the evolution of our medical knowledge. Its books and artifacts are as bizarre as they are fascinating. Read more here.


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