A Look Back


F-Zero SNES Nintendo 30th Anniversary
F-Zero was originally released for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) in Japan on November 21, 1990, with the North America launch nearly a year later during August 1991. Some may remember it on the Virtual Console service across multiple Nintendo platforms over the years and as part of the Super NES Classic Edition in 2017. For those who’ve never heard of this game, it basically takes place in the year 2560, where multi-billionaires with lethargic lifestyles created a new form of entertainment based on the Formula One races called “F-Zero”. Read more for two videos, including a compilation of TV commercials, and additional information.

K-17 Aerial Camera World War 2
Photo credit: Peta Pixel
During World War 2 (1939-1945), photographers used the massive K-17 Army Air Force aerial cameras to capture images from above. They came equipped with a 6″ focal length Metrogon lens and was considered the standard for mapping cameras of its day as well as long after the war. The 20th Air Force used it for some reconnaissance photography with the K-17 and 12″ lens late in the war. However, they were most commonly used for mapping with the 6″ Metrogon lens. Read more for another picture and additional information.

Goodyear Illuminated Tires
Goodyear was far ahead of its time by revealing a tire made of Neothane, a synthetic polyurethane rubber that could be poured into tire-shaped molds and baked in a 250 °F (121 °C) oven, back in 1961. Tires made from this material were far easier to manufacture than traditional tires, which required multiple layers of rubber as well as fabric. One cool feature is that these tires were translucent, so Goodyear took advantage of this by adding dye to the rubber, and then mounted lightbulbs inside the rims. Read more for two videos and additional information.

Aerial Smoke Curtain WW2
Back during World War 2, pilots used Douglas A-20 Havoc planes as well as other aircraft equipped with M10 smoke tanks to disperse aerial curtains that concealed naval ships at sea from enemies. Officially called a ‘Smoke Curtain Installation’, device was mainly used for D-Day operations by RAF Boston aircraft to lay a smoke curtain which screened assaulting craft from the shore batteries at Le Havre, and the East coast of the Cherbourg Peninsula. Titanium tetrachloride (FM), a colorless, non-flammable, corrosive liquid, was used for the smoke. Read more for a video and additional information.

iD Software Quake Arcade Game PC
Photo credit: Tumblr
Back in 1998, arcades were slowly fading out with the release of new home consoles, and there was one cabinet in particular that became extremely rare: Quake – Arcade Tournament Edition. This basically aimed to bring the PC experience to arcades, complete with a 27-inch (640×480) VGA screen, trackball controls, all running on a 266 MHz Pentium II and Windows 95. Read more for a video of it running on a PC and additional information.

AI Neural Network Flying Train Upscale
The Wuppertaler Schwebebahn (Wuppertal Suspension Railway), nicknamed The Flying Train, is basically a suspension railway in Wuppertal, Germany. It’s the world’s oldest electric elevated railway with hanging cars and was built between 1897 and 1903. The first track opened in 1901, and to this day, Schwebebahn is still in use as a normal means of local public transport, transporting 25 million passengers annually. Read more to see how it looked during its early years, thanks to AI.

North American X-15 Rocket-Powered Aircraft NASA
Photo credit: NASA
North American X-15, a hypersonic rocket-powered aircraft operated by the United States Air Force and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, is the fastest yet, setting numerous speed as well as altitude records in the 1960s. It reached the edge of outer space and returnied with valuable data used in aircraft and spacecraft design today. It set the official world record for the highest speed ever recorded by a crewed, powered aircraft, set in October 1967 when William J. Knight flew at Mach 6.70 (4,520 mph) at 102,100 feet. Read more for a video and additional information.

DOOM Source Code SNES
DOOM by id Software was released on MS-DOS on Dec. 10, 1993, and two-years later, it made its way to the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Head programmer Randal Linden led the project and built a whole new game engine (Reality) to get the game running on a 16-bit console with severe memory and storage limitations. This week, Linden released the source code for fans to play around with. Read more for a video and additional information.

AI Neural Network Views of Tokyo, Japan 4K 60FPS
Denis Shiryaev has used AI-powered neural networks to upscale many historical video clips, and his latest project takes us back to the dawn of film taken in Tokyo, Japan between the years of 1913-1915. Some of the work done includes boosting FPS to 60 frames per second, fixing some playback speed issues, enhancing faces, thanks to the pipeline of algorithms designed for facial restoration, and upscaling resolution to 4k. Read more for the video and additional information.

Back to the Future Gigawatt Transformer 35th Anniversary
Hasbro, Inc. partnered with Universal Brand Development and Amblin Entertainment today to reveal the first-ever Transformers-Back to the Future collaboration, starring the all new GIGAWATT. This new time-traveling Transformers Autobot commemorates 35 years since the groundbreaking adventure film, Back to the Future, took audiences back in time. Read more for a 20 things you might have missed in Back to the Future movies video and additional information.