Found: Artifacts From the Future

MetaFilter is reporting that Wired magazine (available on paper) has killed one of our favorite features. Found: Artifacts From the Future was a back page that asked artists and designers to create possible future products. While the magazine generally had a positive view, even in its sloppy use of infoporn, Found always seemed to have a comforting cynicism. Products appeared helpful on the surface, but still exhibited modern pitfalls: Even if you took the big leap to get a Bluetooth implant, it still required a two year contract. The Responsibeer could tell exactly how drunk you were, but did nothing to prevent localized debauchery. A Smart Windshield provided info on unsafe drivers… while obscuring your view.

The short of it is: Found was our kind of futurism. It was excited about new technology while emphasizing all the frustrations we currently have trying to get consumer products to do what we want. It’s sad to see something that got people thinking beyond the now go away. MeFi has conveniently assembled links to all the online Found features.

[via Waxy]

11 thoughts on “Found: Artifacts From the Future

  1. Aw for crying out loud, it’s one of the things that WIRED does best, exploring the social aspects and consequences of advancing technology, mixed with style. This was a flagship feature. I hope they come to their senses or at least host reader-submitted Found: images.

  2. It is the first thing I look for in each Wired issue. This month there was only an ad for a stupid Sony Vaio laptop. I would like to see that section return.

  3. Futurists are a dime a dozen, and the fact that Wired is more of a consumerist rag for hawking the wares of their advertisers first and the readers last it is no suprise…

    I just wish they would quit making their magazine.

  4. I hope PopSci/PopMech picks this up. They really like future-speculating articles as well, and do it a bit more thoroughly than their cynical WiRED counterparts.

  5. There was one artifact that had a picture of the Amazon Kindle, big color screen, but it was not listed above. Anyone know what magazine it might have come from?

  6. Right on! I was flipping through my latest Wired and was about to send them a congratulatory email for printing something like 10 pages of articles with no ads, when I noticed that Found was gone. Now I’m going to send an angry email. Found was the feature I always looked forward to. I’ve seen a few changes to the magazine format, but Found has been there as long as I have subscribed. I don’t know why they would take it out.

  7. what does localized debauchery mean?! I think the OP was trying to say drinking by yourself.. but localized debauchery is such a contrived term. Too original OP!

  8. @brian If you look closely at the bottle, it has disabled the car to prevent drunk driving, and the phone to prevent drunk dialing, but has done nothing to prevent the shenanigans happening in the room.

  9. A better description would be “but could do nothing to prevent the shenanigans happening in the room”. Localized Debauchery makes no sense!

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