Open thread: if Tomorrow's World came back, what should it be like?

Former presenter Maggie Philbin thinks the BBC should revive its popular science show, but how? The BBC cancelled its popular science show Tomorrow's World in 2003 after 38 years, but every so often, there are calls to bring it back.

Rose-tinted nostalgia, or a recognition that there's a science and technology-shaped gap on primetime television here in the UK? The former presenter Maggie Philbin is the latest to call for a revival for the latter reason.

"I really wish I had been given a fiver for the number of people who have said 'why isn't Tomorrow's World on now?'," she said this week, at the launch of a report by the UK Digital Skills Task Force.

"A programme where parents, as well as children, know what it is – there's a lot of science and tech on the telly, but people don't recognise it was a science or tech programme – people know that programme and it ought to come back."

Philbin cited fears of a growing tech-knowledge gap between parents and children, suggesting that a revived Tomorrow's World could help to narrow it, and leave parents less "petrified" of the technology their children are growing up with.

What do you think, though? If Tomorrow's World did come back, how could and should it be adapted for the way TV viewers – and, indeed, technology and science have moved on since 2003? Should it focus more on gadgets and futurology, for example, or address some of the gnarly issues around privacy, data security and government surveillance thrown up since last year's NSA revelations?

How could it address both tech-savvy and tech-novice audiences, or would it have to pick one or the other? Who'd be good presenters, and how would it sit alongside other current BBC shows in its genre like Bang Goes The Theory (which Philbin co-presents) and Click?

Should a Tomorrow's World reboot even be a TV show? Maybe it could be an app – native or web – with interactivity and community as key features. The comments thread is open for your ideas.



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