Life Timeline

For those born December 16, 1969.

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 the computer mouse.

In May 2014, Alexis C. Madrigal wrote about the resilience of the computer mouse.

Year 53

You were born in December of 1969. This year, The Atlantic celebrates its 160th birthday, making it 3 times as old as you.

The year you were born, Townsend Hoopes wrote about the series of influences that led President Lyndon B. Johnson to de-escalate the conflict in Vietnam.


Around the time you were born, the U.S. held its first draft since World War II.

In April 1980, James Fallows discussed the case for a draft.


John Springer Collection / Corbis via Getty

The teenage years

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

Fast Times at Ridgemont High was released in 1982.

Coming of age

Around your 18th birthday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at more than 2,700 points for the first time.

In May 2016, Bourree Lam wrote about the history of the Dow Jones.


Patrick Hertzog / AFP / Getty Images

After the Fall

At 19 years old, you saw the collapse of the Berlin Wall.

“It was thought that all borders between men had similarly disintegrated, and we were all destined to be free and empowered individuals in a global meeting place,” wrote Robert Kaplan 20 years later.

Half a life ago

Your life can be divided into two halves: before and after texting.

In August 2011, Jamie Holmes wrote about how SMS is the driving force behind technology-enabled changes in commerce, crime, political participation, and governing in the developing world.


Mario Anzuoni / Reuters


In 1999, Jennifer Lopez, who was born the same year as you, released her first album, On the 6.

In August 2016, Adrienne LaFrance wrote about how Lopez helped shape internet searching.


Goran Tomasevic / Reuters

After the Spring

When you turned 41, you saw the rise of the Arab Spring.

People across the world rediscovered the power and peril of revolutions, as Laura Kasinof found in Yemen.


By the time you turn 55, the World Bank predicts that the U.S. dollar will lose its global dominance.

In February 2012, Charles A. Kupchan wrote about the world's emerging economies, and how the world will look by 2050.

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: