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I wrote this sentence -

Today what is possible thanks to advancement of technology was only real in sci-fi texts times before.

What I want to mean is that "these technological advanced is real today, but was not real sometimes back"

I know "sometimes back" is not sounding good, so I tried to use "time before". I guess you know what I want to mean. I really have no word to express this. Please help.

  • You could use "in the past", "in past times", "just a few years ago", ... – The Photon Dec 11 '13 at 5:23
  • Just now found out "earlier". What about that? – Man_From_India Dec 11 '13 at 5:50
  • No, earlier is not the right word. "just a few years ago" as Photon says, is probably the best choice. – Jim Dec 11 '13 at 5:51
  • I also agree, but I didn't want to give hints of any time stamp. So that's why I though "earlier" might be the other option. – Man_From_India Dec 11 '13 at 5:53
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    I'd also switch your placement of real and possible: What is real today, thanks to advancements in technology, was only possible in sci-fi stories[books] just a few years ago. – Jim Dec 11 '13 at 5:53
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Today what is possible thanks to advancement of technology was only real in sci-fi texts times before. (*)

You could replace "times before with "in the past", "in past times", or "just a few years ago".

You could also move things around and say something like

What is possible today thanks to advancements of technology was previously only real in science fiction.

I also made a couple of other changes:

  • we say "the advancement of technology" or "advancements in technology", but not "advancement of technology" without the article.

  • "sci-fi" is considered somewhat derogatory (at least by sci-fi fans).

  • "texts" was an unnecessary restriction---didn't sci-fi films also show some of those impossible things?

  • "Today what is possible..." sounds clumsy, although I can't say for sure why. Probably it's a preference to have a single phrase before the verb.

  • One might say "sci-fi is considered somewhat derogatory (at least by SF fans)" ;-) – snailboat Jan 10 '14 at 7:27
  • @snailplane, wouldn't that kinda ruin the joke? – The Photon Jan 10 '14 at 17:03

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