100 Best Gadgets Ever: The TV Age

As the period where mechanical gear started to be superseded by electronics, the 1950s to 1970s makes rich pickings for our ultimate gadget rundown

The period from the late 1950s to late 1970s may not be long in calendar terms, but looking back at it now it seems as if the modern world went through several ages of social and technological upheaval. It's a time that started with teddy boys and (via hippies and disco bunnies) ended up with punk rockers – not to mention man travelling to the Moon... and noodling on the Moog.

Some of the world's greatest gadgets emerged during this turbulent "TV age" (the television itself had been around for a while, we know, but it wasn't until now that it started to replace the radio as people's primary source for entertainment and information), and we've collected our favourites right here: from cameras to video recorders. Gather the family round, make yourselves comfortable... and we can begin.

Image credit: Clapagaré

BMC Mini (1959)

It looked like a toy and handled like a go-kart, but Sir Alec Issigonis’s fuel efficient pocket rocket was a revolution. Every front-wheel drive hatchback built since owes it an engineering nod and its plucky design made it a defining icon of the swinging sixties. But the Mini was by no means exclusive – its owners have run the spectrum of cool from Steve McQueen to Mr Bean.

More after the break...

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