10 TV Shows That Predicted The Future

Sometimes sci-fi predicts the future better than science. Agent Gabriel Vaughn has been enhanced with a microchip in his brain that gives him direct access to the global information grid. How long until science fiction becomes science fact? Intelligence, Monday 10/9c, only on CBS.

1. Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987) — Tablet Computers

Star Trek: The Next Generation / CBS



The slick, touchscreen computers on the ’90s version of the Enterprise looked unbelievable at the time. Now we’d be complaining about the image resolution of the monitors.

ID: 2089081

2. Inspector Gadget (1983) — Invisibility Cloak

Inspector Gadget / DiC Enterprises



In one episode, Inspector Gadget’s sidekick Penny wore a sweet invisibility cloak. Today scientists are developing materials with nanotechnology and LEDs that can replicate invisibility.

ID: 2092794

3. Small Wonder — Housecleaning Robots

Small Wonder / 20th Century Fox Television



The 1980s thought you needed a child robot to help around the house. The 2000s taught us that all you really need is a tiny, subservient disk.

ID: 2080925

4. The Jetsons — Hyperloop Transit


Scientists and inventors, most notably Elon Musk, are currently working on technology to send passenger trains through vacuum tubes at speeds topping 2,500 miles per hour.

ID: 2089011

5. Max Headroom (1987) — Annoying Internet Advertising


Max Headroom was a TV talking head in a society ruled by media networks. He predicted the glitchy, pop-up ridden world of early internet advertising.

ID: 2093302

6. Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987) — The Holodeck

Star Trek: The Next Generation / CBS



Star Trek: The Next Generation also teased us with a room that holographically recreates other locations. Recent computer advances are enabling 3D holographic interfaces (similar to scenes in the movie Minority Report). A functional holodeck might not be too far off.

ID: 2089073

7. The Simpsons (1992) — Baby Translator


A 1992 episode of The Simpsons foretold a machine that translated Maggie Simpson’s baby talk. Today there is an iPhone app that claims to translate a baby’s cries.

ID: 2094920

8. Doctor Who (1963) — Universal Language Translation

Doctor Who / BBC America


Google Translate


The titular Doctor has been able to have all sorts of languages instantaneously translated into English with the help of his TARDIS’s translation circuit, a telepathic field that renders almost every language immediately comprehensible. In reality, we’ve developed an incredible selection of smartphone apps and websites that work just as well.

ID: 2094703

9. Star Trek (1966) — Internal Medical Imaging


The magic, flashing wands that doctors waved over patients in the sickbay of the Starship Enterprise were today’s equivalent of digital diagnostic imaging.

ID: 2094826

10. The Six Million Dollar Man (1974) — Bionic Limbs

The Six Million Dollar Man / ABC



The Six Million Dollar Man would be worth $30 million in 2013 dollars. That seems like a bargain for the ability to run as fast as a car and jump over buildings. Today, for significantly less money, doctors are now fitting patients with prosthetic limbs that respond to brainwaves.

ID: 2093488

The human mind is about to get upgraded.

With a microchip in his brain and direct access to the information grid, Gabriel Vaughn just got the upgrade of a lifetime. Don’t miss INTELLIGENCE, Monday 10/9c, only on CBS.

ID: 2094884

Check out more articles on BuzzFeed.com!

  Your Reaction?