What Is This?

You'd be forgiven for thinking this is digital age command centre, where generals direct scores of experimental drones with waving fingertips, holo-conference with the President and shield the world from terrifying threats unseen. In reality, it's probably older than you are.

What you're looking at is the Crisis Information centre in the USS Hornet, a Navy ship that was decommissioned in 1970, and which famously scooped up the Apollo 11 astronauts after splashdown in the remote North Pacific.

The futurist, glowing instrument panels and mystery consoles are of a distinctly analogue variety—the hanging screens aren't multitouch computer displays, but plain, etched piece of glass, on which crewmembers were required to write backwards, by hand, so the text would be legible to their officers on the other side. Wired's got a full gallery and tour of the ship, and it's definitely worth a look—they just don't make war rooms like they used to. [Wired Science]

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