Ever since man invented machines for transportation, we’ve had instrument panels and dashboards - from the steamships of the nineteenth century, the first cars and planes, through all the developments in land, sea and air transport throughout the twentieth century, not to mention spacecraft. For this article, I’ve avoided car and aircraft dashboards and panels, which we’re all quite familiar with, but here’s a fascinating look at some interesting, and at times mind-boggling, arrays of dials and switches.
(The S.S. Independence ghost ship' control panel. Photo by Troy Paiva, LostAmerica)
If you were sitting behind the wheel of the Model T Ford from 1923, there really wasn’t too much to distract the driver at all. Dashboards have certainly come a long way since then.
The "Vostok" spacecraft control panels also look very interesting, and below you see a "Vostok" panel, but don't get mixed up - this is the "Vostok" analog musical synthesizer, not a spacecraft (although it might launch you into outer space with its groovy sounds):
The "Hindernburg" was a gigantic, and sadly doomed, airship that met its fate in flames (more info). Here’s a member of the crew giving instructions though the speaking tube on a Zeppelin airship from the 1930’s:
And finally, the only car dashboard featured here is the legendary instrument panel of the iconic 1966 Batmobile, from the sixties TV show. Holy gadgets, Batman, as you might be tempted to say - more info here:
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