Open Thread: Predictions, then and tomorrow

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Few people were as prescient about the future as Arthur C. Clarke, best known as the sci-fi author of “2001: A Space Odyssey” and its sentient computer HAL9000 – and he was a futurist.

The above interview clip, from a 1976 AT&T-MIT conference on futurism and technology, has Clark speculating life in the 2010’s and beyond:

Internet-connected computers (.”..a high-definition TV screen, and a typewriter keyboard…”)

Video call communications like Skype (“Friends… tey’ll be able to see us, we’ll be able to see them, you will… exchange pictures, pictorial information, graphical information, data, books, and so forth.”)

Search (Google) (“You’ll tell the machine, I’m interested in such-and-such item – sports, politics and so forth – and the machine will hunt the main central library and bring all this to you selectively.”)

He also predicted the end of newspapers, the pros and cons of mobile phones, and smartwatches – watch the whole thing, it’s fascinating.  So is Clarke’s “Chart of the Future,” predicting that by 2100, earth dwellers will have their first meetings with extra-terrestrials.

But what about you? What are your predictions for the coming year and beyond?  Let us know in the comments!


Virge Randall is Senior Planet’s Managing Editor. She is also a freelance culture reporter who seeks out hidden gems and unsung (or undersung) treasures for Straus Newspapers; her blog “Don’t Get Me Started” puts a quirky new spin on Old School New York City. Send your suggestions for Open Threads to her at