World’s Fair 1939: Robots, superhighways and other futuristic inventions

Robots. Superhighways. Television.

Seventy-five years ago, the New York World’s Fair introduced a vision of the future that still shapes our imagination today.

The fair opened at Flushing Meadows Park in Queens on April 30, 1939, with the first live television broadcast in the U.S., and visitors were amazed by the array of inventions on display. Its theme of “The World of Tomorrow” played throughout the pavilions and was captured in the architecture. At three and a half miles long, and covering 1,216 acres, according to a Greyhound brochure at the time, it was also immense.

By the time the fair closed on Oct. 31, 1940, tens of millions of people had glimpsed a vision of the future.

Here, then, are highlights of the inventions they might have seen —¬†and how they compare to today’s reality.

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