Life Timeline

For those born May 16, 2002.

Not your birthday? Find your timeline here.

Before you were born

You're one of the first people who's never lived in a world without Wikipedia.

In August 2015, Joe Pinsker wrote about the site's paid editors.

Year 20

You were born in May of 2002. This year, The Atlantic celebrates its 160th birthday, making it 8 times as old as you.

The year you were born, Mark Bowden wrote about the daily life of Saddam Hussein, the then-president of Iraq, less than a year before American forces invaded the latter's country and deposed his government.


Around the time you were born, the planetoid Quaoar was discovered orbiting the sun in the Kuiper belt.

In June 2014, Harry Stevens wrote about the search for Earth-like planets.


NASA / JPL-Caltech / Space Science Institute

Touchdown in Outer Space

At 2 years old, you began learning about the world just as we were reaching the outer solar system.

With NASA's Cassini-Huygens mission in 2005, humans landed a probe in the outer reaches of the solar system for the first time, a moment Ross Andersen called the most glorious mission in the history of planetary science.


Jason Reed / Reuters

A More Perfect Union

When you turned 6, you witnessed the election of Barack Obama.

The legacy of the first African American couple in the White House would be a major focus of The Atlantic.

The halfway point

Your life can be divided into two halves: before and after turn-by-turn cellphone navigation.

In September 2012, Alexis C. Madrigal wrote about the technology behind Google's detailed directions.


Courtesy of Open Road Films

The teenage years

This is what Hollywood thought teenagers looked like the year you became one.

Dope was released in 2015.


Todd Williamson / Inivision / AP


In 2016, Maddie Ziegler, who was born the same year as you, became the youngest judge to date on So You Think You Can Dance: The Next Generation, in additon to appearing in movies and launching a clothing line.

In September 2016, Spencer Kornhaber wrote about Sia's music video for her song “The Greatest,” which Ziegler appears in.


By the time you turn 32, NASA says it will send humans to explore Mars.

In August 2015, Alakananda Mookerjee wrote about what new Mars colonists would be able to eat—and how they'd grow it.

History in the making

History is happening all around you, every day.

The Atlantic is here to help you process it, in stories like these: