Amazon Dash Button: The Ultimate Convenience or the End of Civilization?

Amazon’s latest experimental product is the Dash button, a programmable key that makes reordering essentials like laundry detergent as easy as pushing Start on the microwave. Is this the best thing that ever happened to busy America? Or a sign that we’ve become the docile servants of our Amazon Prime accounts? » 3/31/15 7:00pm 3/31/15 7:00pm

'Optimistic' Predictions From 1950 That Warned of the Coming Dystopia

It's so easy for us to look back at old predictions for the future and see them as quaint or overly optimistic. But when we take a closer look—when we stop to really process what's going on in these predictions—we often find that they weren't merely silly or naive. They were warning of the horrific, dystopian future… » 3/30/15 2:33pm 3/30/15 2:33pm

Watch the First Two Installments of Haphead, a VR Gamer Dystopia


For the first time ever, io9 has teamed up with indie filmmakers to bring you a science fiction web series. Created by Jim Munroe (Ghosts with Shit Jobs, Infest Wisely), Haphead is the tale of a gamer who is willing to do anything to get her hands on a new "haptic" VR system for games. » 1/27/15 11:33pm 1/27/15 11:33pm

The First Automata Trailer Is Finally Out and It Looks Spectacular

If Blade Runner and I, Robot gave birth to a new movie starring a bald Antonio Banderas, it would look just like Automata, the latest vision of our inevitably dystopian future. That future—or at least the way director Gabe Ibáñez has imagined it—also looks pretty dang awesome. Well, spectacular is probably a better… » 8/20/14 5:56pm 8/20/14 5:56pm

This Is What American Police of the Future Were Supposed to Look Like

The 1981 kids' book Future War and Weapons by Neil Ardley is filled with the bleaker side of futurism. It's chock full of colorful illustrations of robot armies, war in space, and fallout shelters. But we also get a brief look at the police of tomorrow — police that, while certainly armed, don't look quite like the… » 8/14/14 4:00pm 8/14/14 4:00pm

Here's a satirical glimpse of Earth's dystopian future

Made by Duncan Elms, this video imagines a future where Earth has been ravaged by wars, cyclones, food shortages, destructive weather and horrible humans and turned into areas of uninhabitable zones. And yet, cities would still make bids to host the Olympic Games, even if they're during a nuclear winter. » 7/23/14 11:17pm 7/23/14 11:17pm

A Very Specific List of Things That Are Ruining My Google Alerts

I love Google Alerts. They're a great tool for tracking the mention of different things online. I use them less as a way to learn about breaking news and more as a way to discover how people are talking about the future. But there are all kinds of things that are messing them up. Well, messing them up for me » 5/30/14 4:47pm 5/30/14 4:47pm

Single Vending Machine Replaces Last Shop in English Town

So clever, so depressing: the English town of Clifton, having dwindled in economic strength over the years, has responded to the loss of its last place to shop with a giant vending machine. The so-called Speedy Shop—really, an over-sized, building-shaped machine standing alone in a dreary parking lot—is meant to help… » 4/10/14 3:20pm 4/10/14 3:20pm

The drones and cameras in this dystopian animation are horrifying

The dystopia created in this animation by Simon Russell is a world I hope to never be a part of: drones littered across the sky, surveillance cameras pointing every which way and for some reason, dubstep. It doesn't all make sense but Russell's imaginative take on the look of futuristic drones and cameras are… » 4/09/14 8:31pm 4/09/14 8:31pm

The New RoboCop Is What RoboCop Meant to Kill

This new RoboCop movie does not care that anyone might compare it unfavorably to the original 1987 RoboCop movie. It has been programmed not to care about these things. The most readily available metaphor, which is also true, is that the new movie has killed the human mind and guts of its predecessor and kept the cold… » 2/14/14 4:54pm 2/14/14 4:54pm

The Future of Urbanization Looks Mesmerizingly Bleak

As more and more ozone depleting humans start crowding together, we're going to eventually stain the entire world with concrete streets and flickering street lights. Mountains are going to glow like man-made volcanoes, rivers are going to become brown sludge and new urban cities will be carved into whatever is left of… » 2/20/13 8:00pm 2/20/13 8:00pm