Best Time Period in History

  • Thread starter Exorcet
  • 54 comments
  • 1,264 views
7,196
Exorcet
OE Exorcet
I'm not worried about rich snooby celebrities or athletes, what if someone made a very convincing video of a "rival/enemy" president saying something that leads to a massive chaos? What about bullies using it to distort victims into some sort of sick person? What if it's used for political propaganda reasons?

The more I hear about the current and future times, the more I wish if I was born 50-500 years prior for all I know.

Taken from the Digital surveillance, facial recognition, privacy and security thread. I'm curious to see how people feel. Personally I feel like now is a pretty good time to be alive. Going back even a few decades I'd be worried about being able to get into my chosen field, and then in addition there was just less to do. In the past many things had yet to be invented (no computers for instance) or were harder to access (cars and gas were cheap in the 60's but today you can own every car available in the 60's in a pretty realistic simulator thanks to previously mentioned computers and take them to any track in the world without paying for gas at all).

Then there were of course all the issues we've faced through human history. Digital fakes are new, but the threat that they pose (disinformation) has always existed. If today we can track people's location to the minute it means you can't be framed for a crime you were no where near. On the other hand, without that tracking technology, how do we know for sure? Could someone with enough imagination get you falsely convicted?

I liked @Imari's reply to the quote above:
I think you'll find that people could do similar things in the past. They might have looked different, but the results would be the same. In the dark ages if a respected member of the community condemned you as a heretic you were going to have a real rough time no matter what the truth of the matter was.

Most societies have some method by which people can lie to completely mess up the lives of others. Hell, 20 years ago you could just accuse someone of being a paedophile and things would probably not go well for them.

This is just the latest in a long line of ways that humans can be dicks to each other. Thankfully, it's relatively easily counteracted in the same way as all the others - apply a little skepticism and common sense. Unfortunately, humans are on the whole resoundingly bad at using either of these things.

In just the previous century we fought the largest wars in history and then had a 50 year period where two nations with the ability to reset civilization were openly on bad terms with each other. In hindsight we know how those situations turned out, but living through them without knowing where we were heading exactly would have felt a bit different.
 

GranTurNismo

Resident Car Nerd
Premium
2,829
United States
Elizabeth, New Jersey, USA
The best time to be alive is now. There is no "good 'ol days". Yes, the world is still plagued by poverty, war, inequality, and disease. Though, the quality of life for the poor as well as the percentage of the world in poverty has gone down as time has progressed. The scale and frequency of wars post-WWII has continued to decline. Life expectancies are continuing to increase and rates of diseases and viruses such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, cholera, among many other nations have decreased. Continued increases in technology have allowed people of all socioeconomic groups and all nations of the world to have the highest standard of living of any other time in history.

However, there's still a lot of work to be done. And there's always the possibility that as time goes on, the world will get worse.
 

Liquid

Fission Mailed
Premium
24,934
Slovakia
Bratvegas
GTP_Liquid
I don't think it's possible to actually determine any time period better to live in. The criteria will always be selective. For example, I once worked out that 1967 would be the approximate best year for me to be born to enjoy sport things that happened before I was born or before I was able to appreciate them and this is assuming that I would have grown up interested in the same sporty things in the same way.

It doesn't at all acknowledge the political, socio-economic or educational changes that would have been affected had I been born in 1967 instead. For any argument someone will say about "I wish I'd been born in..." there will always be a whataboutism, mostly legitimate, to make it less desirable or less nostalgic.

It's just not possible to look past the suspension of disbelief; you don't want to grow up in that time period, you want to grow up in that time period knowing what you know now.
 

Dotini

Premium
15,088
United States
Seattle
CR80_Shifty
In my humble opinion, we cannot know the best time. Known history goes back only to ~4000 BC.

That said, my candidates for the best time for humans would the Paleolithic, Neolithic, Bronze and Renaissance Medieval, in that order.
 
7,069
Bahrain
Parts Unknown
PM me
PM me
I wasn't implying it wasn't bad back, i hate this "I was born in the wrong generation" type of argrument but instead let's look at it this way, imagine if you put yourself in the shoes of some poor family living in war tone land that was doing okay back then but then some major powers decided to mess around with it and cause the downfall of the economy and massive unstability for like decades on. It's easy for me and you to see things going well for us but others aren't so lucky. Of course we shouldn't look at it in just political view or such.

and then had a 50 year period where two nations with the ability to reset civilization were openly on bad terms with each other. In hindsight we know how those situations turned out, but living through them without knowing where we were heading exactly would have felt a bit different.
I mean let's be real here, there's still a huge threats for "reseting Civilization". Just because Soviet Union split up and turned into mostly Russia, doesn't mean all the threats of WW3 went away. I mean what's the difference between then and now? Just a year ago, people were crying about 2020 being the worst years of their lives because of some virus that aren't that different from other types of deadly viruses we had for the last 10 or so centuries and that we were "so close to starting WW3" but you know how that turned out to be. Speaking of which, what about all those youths who complain about having massive education debts and lower incomes? We had those in the past to some degree. What about the enviroment and discrimination? everything? Quite frankly, i wish if i haven't made that comment.

Life expectancies are continuing to increase and rates of diseases and viruses such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, cholera, among many other nations have decreased.
Tell that to my diabetic fat society. On a more serious note, i actually agree with you.

Continued increases in technology have allowed people of all socioeconomic groups and all nations of the world to have the highest standard of living of any other time in history.
On the other hand...
I view technology as a blessing and a curse at the same time. It's great and all but i honestly wish if i could live without half of the things tbh.

Otherwise, i have nothing to say. I hope everyone doing well.
 
Last edited:

UKMikey

This is where the casuals hang out, right?
Premium
9,435
United Kingdom
West Drayton
UKMikeyA
UKMikeyA
I kind of prefer now. But it's all personal.
 
Last edited:

UKMikey

This is where the casuals hang out, right?
Premium
9,435
United Kingdom
West Drayton
UKMikeyA
UKMikeyA
Remove social media and Covid and I might agree with you.
Social media is optional and the peace and quiet sure is nice. I know people are dying though.
 
Last edited:

Danoff

Who is John Galt?
Premium
30,273
United States
Mile High City
This exact moment is not terrific due to the pandemic. But I think maybe the end of 2021 could be pretty outstanding.

I miss the 90's.

Pre-9/11, pre-social media, and an economically-prosperous time compared to the relative lulls of the 70s and 80s.

maxresdefault.jpg
 
Last edited:
8,814
United States
Marin County
While I certainly appreciate a lot of technology and the fact that I can right click the above image, and within 5 seconds know everything about it, part of me feels like the 1990s were a better balance between useful technology and invasive technology. The fact that the 1990s were pre-9/11* is also a bonus. Its weird...like it's quite handy to have every piece of music ever practically available for free on youtube or spotify...there's something about that I don't like. It's too easy. I'm personally hoping there will be a widespread reaction against the invasiveness of technology that will put us back into a more 1990s-like state because I have a hard time accepting that tech will be increasingly more invasive. However, I also see that one of the most popular STEM majors is data science, and those people are going to want jobs and big salaries...

*I used to categorize things in my head as pre-9/11 and post 9/11. Until Trump. So then things were pre-Trump but that didn't even finish because now it's pre-Covid. :lol:
 
Last edited:

UKMikey

This is where the casuals hang out, right?
Premium
9,435
United Kingdom
West Drayton
UKMikeyA
UKMikeyA
Its weird...like it's quite handy to have every piece of music ever practically available for free on youtube or spotify...there's something about that I don't like. It's too easy. I'm personally hoping there will be a widespread reaction against the invasiveness of technology that will put us back into a more 1990s-like state because I have a hard time accepting that tech will be increasingly more invasive.
Maybe try surfing with one eye closed or a hand tied behind your back or something if you think things are too easy for you.

I tend to download long videos of YouTube to watch at my leisure because the constant adverts online drive me up the wall. When I think back to the crappy media resolutions and download speeds of 2010 it'd be hard going back. Sorry if this is shortsighted.
 
Last edited:
8,814
United States
Marin County
Maybe try surfing with one eye closed or a hand tied behind your back or something if you think things are too easy for you.

I tend to download long videos of YouTube to watch at my leisure because the constant adverts online drive me up the wall. When I think back to the crappy media resolutions and download speeds of 2010 it'd be hard going back. Sorry if this is shortsighted.

No, I get it, trust me. I remember downloading a simple 30 second clip of a Mclaren F1 racing a Veilside Supra took me a full week on Kazaa back in the day. I was just thinking about how many things used to be rare and therefore felt special. Going to a music store and trying to find cool stuff - that experience is completely redundant now. Funny, now people are paying for artificial or at least contrived rarity with this whole NFT industry, it seems clear that specialness/uniqueness is not a concept forgotten by humans...in fact it seems like there is a particularly strong urge for it now, for example: Supreme.
 
465
United States
United States
Boston77Bruins
I think the time in which you are living is the best time. ;)
I would have liked to have seen America before concrete. So, I guess my answer would be around the Lewis and Clark expedition time.
Dangers and dysentery be damned.
It may not be the best time but it’s my time. :cheers:
 
10,416
United Kingdom
United Kingdom
mysteron71
It's gotta be... 2063 when Zefram Cochrane invents the warp drive! everything will be out of this world :sly:👍
 

Keef

Premium
22,505
United States
Dayton, OH
GTP_KeefRacer
GTP Keef
I miss the 90's.
I thought I did too but then I remembered that my mom smoked in the house and you could see the layer of smoke floating stagnantly right at about intake level of a 10-year old boy.

Been trying to justify this time period or that but honestly I'm not too fussed about what we've got right now. The only things I don't really like are that all the old sports cars I want are getting more expensive really quickly. I really quite like the connectivity and information availability. And the lack of smoke inside every restaurant and bowling alley. I like navigation systems and traffic avoidance. I like microbreweries on every corner. I like being in aviation in our current time because conditions for pilots were considerably worse not that long ago, especially pre-9/11. I like this RGB keyboard. There's a lot to like.
 
4,116
United States
Kentucky
barrett5
BarrettMopar
I think it depends on if it is what is the best time period for me or for the world as a whole. It is impossible to say when the world was at its best, especially because the farther back in history it is, the less we know about it. I would say that the best time period for me would be mid 2019 because I could still go outside and enjoy the nice weather without being worried while still having the same technology I do today. (Thinking about this made me realize that I haven't upgraded anything important in about 2 years, hopefully now that I realize this nothing immediately quits working.)
 
1,348
United Kingdom
United Kingdom
Whatever makes a period "good", the 90s to 2010 had it (for me). Of course, how much that has to do with my experiences growing up versus the objective reality of the time will never be known.

A period I'd be interested in living in would be the Georgian era, though I definitely wouldn't call it the best.
 

UKMikey

This is where the casuals hang out, right?
Premium
9,435
United Kingdom
West Drayton
UKMikeyA
UKMikeyA
No, I get it, trust me. I remember downloading a simple 30 second clip of a Mclaren F1 racing a Veilside Supra took me a full week on Kazaa back in the day. I was just thinking about how many things used to be rare and therefore felt special. Going to a music store and trying to find cool stuff - that experience is completely redundant now. Funny, now people are paying for artificial or at least contrived rarity with this whole NFT industry, it seems clear that specialness/uniqueness is not a concept forgotten by humans...in fact it seems like there is a particularly strong urge for it now, for example: Supreme.
I feel like I've already been there and done that and hunted down those supposedly rare CDs, comics, video games and DVDs. Spotify and streaming video just make it easier to find them all again without digging through dozens of crates and boxes in my shed.

I also feel like I have an advantage over later generations though because struggling to amass all that culture in the past has given me greater curating skills to know what's worth listening/watching/playing/reading. For me, at least.

The problems you describe sound extremely first world to me.
 
Last edited:

kikie

I'm here
Premium
24,181
Belgium
in the land of stupidity
There is no such thing as the best time period in history. Every time period has its positive and negative sides. And it is also a personal thing. Some people have a good life in a certain time area, e.g. healthy rich people, Kings, Dukes, Knights, privileged people, monks, scientists, pirates, etc ... . If you were a poor peasant in the middle ages, you probably had a tough life.

Diseases, the Spanish Inquisition, wars (centuries ago, WWI, WWII and current local wars, terrorism), prosecutions (witches and whatnot) to name a few.
 

Scaff

Moderator
26,402
United Kingdom
He/Him
ScaffUK
ScaffGTP
Going to a music store and trying to find cool stuff - that experience is completely redundant now.
It's not redundant at all (pandemic aside), it's just had a different edge added to it. You can still hunt down rare and odd vinyl (again pandemic aside) in person, and now on-line, but more importantly it's possible to try far more music than it ever was.

Take for example the book 1001 Records to Listen to Before You Die, back before the likes of Spotify that would (based on an average of say, £10 per album) cost you circa £10k to do, now anyone who wants to can sample all of them, and then you can have the fun of hunting down specific physical pressing s if you wish.

Funny, now people are paying for artificial or at least contrived rarity with this whole NFT industry, it seems clear that specialness/uniqueness is not a concept forgotten by humans...in fact it seems like there is a particularly strong urge for it now, for example: Supreme.
It never has and never will be lost, I mean people moaned that the advent of just about every technology was pretty much the end of everything, from the printing press to the internet.

As Douglas Adams said...

“I've come up with a set of rules that describe our reactions to technologies:
1. Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works.
2. Anything that's invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.
3. Anything invented after you're thirty-five is against the natural order of things.”

...thankfully I've got to 50 and remain as geeky as hell.
 
1,258
United Kingdom
United Kingdom
I can only really comment on my own life. I have lived in the 70s, 80s, 90s, 00s and 10s.

10s has by far been the worse period sadly. Not personally - my personal and working life and doing great. The state of my nation though (UK) is frankly depressing. It has gone backwards in just about every possible measure.

If I had to pick another decade to live in, I'd go for one that would be most interesting. Perhaps around the time of WWII or even the swinging 60s - it would have been nice to watch England win the World Cup too!
 
Last edited:

UKMikey

This is where the casuals hang out, right?
Premium
9,435
United Kingdom
West Drayton
UKMikeyA
UKMikeyA
If I had to pick another decade to live in, I'd go for one that would be most interesting. Perhaps around the time of WWII or even the swinging 60s - it would have been nice to watch England win the World Cup too!
Wow... the heck would I want a world war to happen during my lifetime. And I'm not even Jewish or Japanese.
 
1,258
United Kingdom
United Kingdom
Wow... the heck would I want a world war to happen during my lifetime. And I'm not even Jewish or Japanese.
It is because of the historical context that's all - of course I would not really choose to live in a World War when it came to it. It would be a fascinating time to live that's all I meant.
 

UKMikey

This is where the casuals hang out, right?
Premium
9,435
United Kingdom
West Drayton
UKMikeyA
UKMikeyA
It is because of the historical context that's all - of course I would not really choose to live in a World War when it came to it. It would be a fascinating time to live that's all I meant.
Sounds like a nice place to visit but personally I'd be running for the safety of my TARDIS the moment the balloon went up. How about living in the immediate post-war years instead?
 
Last edited:

Danoff

Who is John Galt?
Premium
30,273
United States
Mile High City
I think the time in which you are living is the best time. ;)
I would have liked to have seen America before concrete. So, I guess my answer would be around the Lewis and Clark expedition time.
Dangers and dysentery be damned.
It may not be the best time but it’s my time. :cheers:

Two words... air conditioning.
 

Keef

Premium
22,505
United States
Dayton, OH
GTP_KeefRacer
GTP Keef
Two words... air conditioning.
Not having AC literally put me in the hospital in summer 2019. I don't know how people ever got anything accomplished in Midwest summer humidity. It's nearly as bad as Florida except you're literally hundreds of miles away from decent water.
 
7,196
Exorcet
OE Exorcet
I wasn't implying it wasn't bad back [then?]
That's fair and I figured it was the case. I've thought about asking this question for a while now, I was just looking for an excuse to post it and I happened on your comments in the other thread.

While I certainly appreciate a lot of technology and the fact that I can right click the above image, and within 5 seconds know everything about it, part of me feels like the 1990s were a better balance between useful technology and invasive technology. The fact that the 1990s were pre-9/11* is also a bonus. Its weird...like it's quite handy to have every piece of music ever practically available for free on youtube or spotify...there's something about that I don't like. It's too easy.

I don't know, I still find that there is plenty of information or items that are hard to track down even today. I think part of the problem is that more popular items are more likely to be stored and remembered on a societal level, so if you like more niche stuff you probably have to put in more work to find it. The good news is that there is a lot more room for niches today than in the past.