Isaac Asimov’s 1964 Predictions About What the World Will Look 50 Years Later — in 2014

asimov 65When New York City hosted The World’s Fair in 1964, Isaac Asimov, the prolific sci-fi author and professor of biochemistry at Boston University, took the opportunity to wonder what the world would look like 50 years hence — assuming the world survived the nuclear threats of the Cold War. Writing in The New York Times, Asimov imagined a world that you might partly recognize today, a world where:

  • “Gadgetry will continue to relieve mankind of tedious jobs. Kitchen units will be devised that will prepare ‘automeals,’ heating water and converting it to coffee; toasting bread; frying, poaching or scrambling eggs, grilling bacon, and so on. Breakfasts will be ‘ordered’ the night before to be ready by a specified hour the next morning.”
  • “Communications will become sight-sound and you will see as well as hear the person you telephone. The screen can be used not only to see the people you call but also for studying documents and photographs and reading passages from books. Synchronous satellites, hovering in space will make it possible for you to direct-dial any spot on earth, including the weather stations in Antarctica.”
  • “[M]en will continue to withdraw from nature in order to create an environment that will suit them better. By 2014, electroluminescent panels will be in common use. Ceilings and walls will glow softly, and in a variety of colors that will change at the touch of a push button.”
  • “Robots will neither be common nor very good in 2014, but they will be in existence.”
  • “The appliances of 2014 will have no electric cords, of course, for they will be powered by long- lived batteries running on radioisotopes.”
  • “[H]ighways … in the more advanced sections of the world will have passed their peak in 2014; there will be increasing emphasis on transportation that makes the least possible contact with the surface. There will be aircraft, of course, but even ground travel will increasingly take to the air a foot or two off the ground.”
  • “[V]ehicles with ‘Robot-brains’ … can be set for particular destinations … that will then proceed there without interference by the slow reflexes of a human driver.”
  • “[W]all screens will have replaced the ordinary set; but transparent cubes will be making their appearance in which three-dimensional viewing will be possible.”
  • “[T]he world population will be 6,500,000,000 and the population of the United States will be 350,000,000.” And later he warns that if the population growth continues unchecked, “All earth will be a single choked Manhattan by A.D. 2450 and society will collapse long before that!” As a result, “There will, therefore, be a worldwide propaganda drive in favor of birth control by rational and humane methods and, by 2014, it will undoubtedly have taken serious effect.” [See our Walt Disney Family Planning cartoon from earlier this week.]
  • “Ordinary agriculture will keep up with great difficulty and there will be ‘farms’ turning to the more efficient micro-organisms. Processed yeast and algae products will be available in a variety of flavors.”
  • “The world of A.D. 2014 will have few routine jobs that cannot be done better by some machine than by any human being. Mankind will therefore have become largely a race of machine tenders. Schools will have to be oriented in this direction…. All the high-school students will be taught the fundamentals of computer technology will become proficient in binary arithmetic and will be trained to perfection in the use of the computer languages that will have developed out of those like the contemporary “Fortran.”
  • “[M]ankind will suffer badly from the disease of boredom, a disease spreading more widely each year and growing in intensity. This will have serious mental, emotional and sociological consequences, and I dare say that psychiatry will be far and away the most important medical specialty in 2014.”
  •  “[T]he most glorious single word in the vocabulary will have become work!” in our “a society of enforced leisure.”

Isaac Asimov wasn’t the only person who peered into the future during the 60s and got it right. You can find a few more on-the-mark predictions from contemporaries below:

Arthur C. Clarke Predicts the Future in 1964 … And Kind of Nails It

Walter Cronkite Imagines the Home of the 21st Century … Back in 1967

The Internet Imagined in 1969

Marshall McLuhan Announces That The World is a Global Village

via Buzzfeed



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  1. Enrique Vazquez says . . . | August 30, 2013 / 8:41 am

    How powerful and humble a man becomes, when observation becomes his norm, for we are creatures of habits, and thus our lifes can be foretold. I dream of a day when we are who we truly are. Thank you for sharing.

  2. André Rodrigues says . . . | August 30, 2013 / 10:36 am

    “Robots will neither be common nor very good in 2014, but they will be in existence.”

    This is my favorite, he was able to understand that his vision of intelligent robots would take a very long time. Usually with futurists, the problem is that they think great things are right around the corner, and bad things are still far away in the future (like overpopulation).

  3. Patrick Murphy says . . . | August 31, 2013 / 1:32 am

    “[M]ankind will suffer badly from the disease of boredom, a disease spreading more widely each year and growing in intensity. This will have serious mental, emotional and sociological consequences, and I dare say that psychiatry will be far and away the most important medical specialty in 2014.”
    How very prescient of Isaac when we see today August 2014 that the DSM 5 has been published and it has expanded to include many more separate diagnoses of illnesses than that edition of 30 years ago….

  4. john durcan says . . . | August 31, 2013 / 3:36 am

    huxley

  5. PacificSage says . . . | August 31, 2013 / 7:10 pm

    I don’t think he got it ‘right’ at all.

    His last sentence…”[T]he most glorious single word in the vocabulary will have become work!” in our ”a society of enforced leisure.”…Really? If being laid off work, being unemployed, up to your eyes in debt is leisure ten yes, he got it right.

    Mr Asimov is a brilliant technician and a great writer, but I don’t think he every anticipated how pathological the financial industry would become, and how they would sell out the future for the sake of having a few thousand billionaires. His distant future (the one in h1s mind) will never be built. It will never be financed.

  6. Dave Juliette says . . . | September 1, 2013 / 3:16 am

    This was an interesting piece until at the very end when you make the fantastic statement, “Isaac Asimov wasn’t the only person who peered into the future during the 60s and got it right.”

    “Got it right?” What exactly can you mean by that?

    Where are the “automeals” that can be “ordered the night before?” And the “electroluminescent panels” that he thinks will be ubiquitous, lighting up our homes “in a variety of colors?”

    Speaking of ubiquity, robotics is quite commonplace today in manufacturing worldwide (to name just one example), and the science has produced units that are quite “good”.

    And while your iPhone and your laptop run on batteries (albeit not ones “running on isotopes”), the fact is that most appliances (including your precious Keurig”) still depend on the grid for their power.

    And while there has been a lot of talk from Google about cars that will drive themselves, we’re still some decades away from that technology filtering down to the consumer (we’ll see it in mass transportation first), and highways are still being designed and built pretty much the same today as they were in 1964. And where are all the hovercraft buzzing around “a foot or two off the ground?”

    “Wall screens” have certainly supplemented, but in no way have “replaced the ordinary set”, and as for those 3-D “transparent cubes”, well, it sounds as though Mr. Asimov has been nipping at the LSD-25, which I remind you was still legal in 1964.

    And while Marmite and Vegimite may be all the rage in Britain and Australia, respectively, there aren’t too many Americans (or anyone else, for that matter) beating down the grocers’ doors for flavored yeast.

    I’m not sure what Asimov considers to be “routine jobs”, but it seems to me that central to the current debate we’re having about illegal immigrants is that they are taking up all of the “routine jobs” that Americans don’t want, anyway. And if you think that we are (or are becoming) a race of “machine tenders”, and that our schools should be “oriented in this direction”, then you’re just not paying attention to what is going on in the streets. Most people work real jobs doing real things, and a lot of them don’t even encounter a machine that requires simply “tending”.

    And Dr. Phil notwithstanding, I don’t think any reasonable person can say that psychiatry is “the most important medical specialty” today. Again, anyone who thinks that boredom is widespread among the American populace today just isn’t paying attention to anyone outside their immediate circle.

    And if we have become “a society of enforced leisure”, it’s only because of the gross disparity between rich and poor and the disappearance of meaningful middle-class jobs, which has much more to do with the sequestering (to use a popular 2013 term) of wealth to the few than it has to do with computer automation displacing workers.

    About the only thing Asimov gets right in this entire litany of fantasy are the population numbers, which are pretty much in the ballpark. But then accurate predictive modeling for population growth has been available for well over a century now, and was certainly available to Asimov.

    “Got it right?”

    Let me tell you, anyone that can read Asimov’s predictions and conclude that he “got it right” sounds to me as though he attended a school geared toward machine tending, in which reading comprehension is not on the curriculum.

  7. Duncan says . . . | September 1, 2013 / 6:39 am

    I’d say he got about half of it right, and half of it way wrong. I know I don’t have a cordless stove that has my breakfast and lunch prepared from my orders the day before. And I don’t go shopping for TV diners driving a car that hovers two feet above the seldom used roadway. Just saying.

  8. Badger says . . . | September 2, 2013 / 2:22 am

    A pity he didn’t concentrate more on geopolitics; but that is the most difficult of all.

    Who could have then predicted the collapse of communism, the rise of the liberal left, the threat of militant Islamism and the resurgence of antisemitism?

  9. Jane says . . . | September 2, 2013 / 5:07 am

    who is Dave Juliette and did he write this brilliant rejoinder quickly?

  10. Dave Trowbridge says . . . | September 2, 2013 / 5:39 pm

    “…a race of machine tenders.” Yeah, the one we all rage against. Quite prescient.

  11. roderickbeck says . . . | September 4, 2013 / 4:39 am

    He got it mostly wrong.

  12. credulousdolt says . . . | September 4, 2013 / 7:05 am

    You forgot the rise of the drooling-trogolodyte right and the formation of the Christ-or-piss-off States of the NRA. I’ll take a good, old-fashioned commie any day over a low-IQ moron from today’s “conservative” parties. William F. Buckley, although dead, is blushing and muttering in shocked dismay.

  13. Andy Adams says . . . | September 4, 2013 / 7:20 am

    For a further enlightenment on “how pathological the financial industry would become…” may I suggest a good read for you, “Snakes in Suits” Dr. Robert Hare is a co-author I believe. About when psychopaths go to work; then you will truly understand the incorrigible nature of the entire present system – it is an advanced state of decay.

  14. beatlchic says . . . | September 4, 2013 / 7:51 am

    If more of you commenting here had been a child of the 60′s (like me) …you would’ve truly got the SENSE of just how close to the mark Asimov really was!

  15. Charles Burns says . . . | September 4, 2013 / 9:39 am

    Those who say he got it wrong simple don’t read enough:

    Correct: Gadgetry will relieve us of tedious jobs (obvious).

    Partial: Automeals: This isn’t here yet, but there are machines that make hamburgers and sandwiches from start to finish.

    Correct: Communications sight/sound: He predicted smartphones, satellite phones, and Iridium.

    Correct: Electroluminescent panels/colors/touch: He predicted multi-color LED lights. I have them in my pool, hot tub, and can easily get them for the home.

    Partial: “Robots will neither be common nor very good in 2014″: Roomba, Aquabot. Both are “OK” and uncommon. Not specific enough to say he “nailed it”.

    Incorrect: “The appliances of 2014 will have no electric cords”: We may have the technology if not for safety problems of nuke power, but this prediction is still wrong.

    Correct: “there will be increasing emphasis on transportation that makes the least possible contact with the surface.” http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2013/08/30/super-bullet-train-test_n_3843685.html

    Correct: “[V]ehicles with ‘Robot-brains’”. Nevada issues drivers licenses for self-driving cars. Google uses them to pick up guests. The technology is here now, but not yet widely adopted.

    Correct: “[W]all screens will have replaced the ordinary set”

    Correct: “but transparent cubes will be making their appearance in which three-dimensional viewing will be possible.” http://gajitz.com/worlds-first-true-3d-display-projects-pictures-in-mid-air/

    http://www.techeblog.com/index.php/tech-gadget/mit-researchers-develop-hologram-3d-display-that-doesn-t-require-special-glasses

    Correct: “[T]he world population will be 6,500,000,000 and the population of the United States will be 350,000,000″

    (It’s a little higher, but very close)

    Incorrect: “Ordinary agriculture will keep up with great difficulty” Thanks to Norman Borlaug, probably the greatest hero in world history, this is wrong. It could have gone either wait.

    More incorrect than correct: “The world of A.D. 2014 will have few routine jobs that cannot be done better by some machine than by any human being.”

    We have machines that replace human workers at most menial tasks — Making burgers, manufacturing cars, manufacturing iPads (those factories are being automated as I type this), but we have not become a society of machine tenders. Much more so than before, but not there yet.

    Unknown: “[M]ankind will suffer badly from the disease of boredom” I’m not sure how this can be verified or disproven. I’m not bored.

    Unknown: “[T]he most glorious single word in the vocabulary will have become work!”. I’m not sure how to measure the glory of a word.

    I’d say he got most of them right…Though this article lacks an exhaustive list of predictions.

  16. Ray O'Rourke says . . . | September 4, 2013 / 10:02 am

    I far as the disease of boredom is concerned I believe that prediction is pretty spot-on: consider how many people have been diagnosed with ADHD, which could very well be described that way. We certainly have enough children on heavy medication for that – do they ever get off of it?

  17. disqus_KxAHnCo4Tu says . . . | September 4, 2013 / 11:00 am

    well he got some of the things right. I was at the 1964 Worlds Fair as a High School Student and was excited about the future. I worked in the space program 1967-1973 and after we landed on the Moon thought the SCi Fi future I grew up reading about was here !! Unfortunately Nixon and later Presidents did not have the charisma and leadership Kennedy had and we got mired in politics, corruption and they being paid off by the military industrial complex. The future is more than likely to be “Rollerball” where the corporations run the world…all gov’ts having failed. The USA was the last great world leader…there will be no other, unless its Monsanto, GE, or some other corporate giant who runs the politics…..the only hope for us peasants is to emigrate to Mars…and start over…give the Earth to the Bilderbergers, Masons or whoever are running things. For the future… look at Mars One, and The Mars Society ( read ” the case for mars” by Dr Zubin and “High Frontier” by Dr Oneil)

  18. Unlicensed Dremel says . . . | September 5, 2013 / 7:03 am

    It doesn’t matter when you’re born – the only thing you need to evaluate his predictions are the substance of the predictions, and the reality next year. He was dead right on quite a few, but dead wrong on several as well… Overall, mildly impressive.

  19. Unlicensed Dremel says . . . | September 5, 2013 / 7:06 am

    You’re right except for the resurgence of anti-semitism… that’s in your mind – the opposite is true… the only thing there is a rise in, is the perceived anti-semitism where none exists, as you demonstrate.

  20. Unlicensed Dremel says . . . | September 5, 2013 / 7:09 am

    He actually couldn’t possibly have been more dead wrong about boredom…. quite the opposite – more things to do than ever before; but the mental illness part is right, precisely because of the overwhelming complexity and overwhelming choices the world offers.

  21. revjoeyreed says . . . | September 5, 2013 / 12:16 pm

    Many hand-held appliances are battery-operated and rechargeable. Depends on how one defines “appliance.”

  22. rejane florinda says . . . | September 6, 2013 / 6:56 pm

    and of course, the other side of boredom: depression. which is becoming the most commom and dangerous illness of this century.

  23. rejane florinda says . . . | September 6, 2013 / 6:58 pm

    hellooo, I am not from the 60′s but I get how close he was in almost everything. You don’t need to be old or new in this matter. Just having a normal understanding of history will do.

  24. rejane florinda says . . . | September 6, 2013 / 6:59 pm

    He is one of my heroes.

  25. rejane florinda says . . . | September 6, 2013 / 7:02 pm

    I think that disease is depression. It is some kind of boredom that takes over the depressed mind. You know, nothing is good, nothing is interesting, you think about dying all the time = boredom. Right on.

  26. rejane florinda says . . . | September 6, 2013 / 7:05 pm

    I think the difference between prediction and time travel escapes some people in this discussion. For someone that did not have a time capsule to travel in, he was pretty good in his predictions.

  27. grayjohn says . . . | September 8, 2013 / 7:57 am

    This was all BO (Before Obama) and the death of hope. Had the world proceeded the way it was back then, well, things would be amazingly better than they are now. But they didn’t factor in the evils of progressivism and utopianism and the absolute political corruption we have today. Azimovs idea of “Risks” should be adopted now as the way to treat criminals.

  28. grayjohn says . . . | September 8, 2013 / 8:01 am

    Don’t confuse boredom with despair. Boredom is not a factor of depression.

  29. grayjohn says . . . | September 8, 2013 / 8:03 am

    He didn’t foresee prog asswipes like you either.

  30. Ian Wardell says . . . | September 8, 2013 / 5:17 pm

    He got very little right so I’m baffled how you reach that conclusion?

  31. rejane florinda says . . . | September 8, 2013 / 6:54 pm

    of course it is, dear. Despair is not the only factor on a depressed mind. There is also fear, boredom, lonliness, anger, anxiety, and oh, what is the name of that thing again? yes, boredom… despair is actually a very severe stage of depression, not it’s only aspect. Trust me, it is there all the time. But what do I know, I’ve only suffered from depression these last ten years of my life…n

  32. rejane florinda says . . . | September 8, 2013 / 7:08 pm

    well, I think I can relate to his predictions in a different way. I don’t expect him to get everything right, just evaluate similarities between what he thought would happen and what is currently in existence in our time. If he had a time travel capsule, he would’ve been more specific. Come on, vehicles with robotic brains… that is pretty close to some cars we have nowadays. But he did not predict the internet, for example, just something that could resemble smartphones… and so on and so forth. So, it is kind of an analytical method, not a factual comparison. He had some hints but not the whole thing. I am sure you know Michio Kaku’s “Phisics of the Future”. Scientists don’t exactly make predictions, they estimate the probabilities of the future based on what is already happening in their own time. That is not an easy thing to do…n

  33. rejane florinda says . . . | September 8, 2013 / 7:17 pm

    here is some information about the book, if it interests you. http://physics.about.com/od/michiokaku/fr/PhysicsFuture.htm

  34. Ian Wardell says . . . | September 9, 2013 / 5:43 am

    No I haven’t heard of Michio Kaku’s Physics of the future. I have read a book by him though called visions I think. That was many years ago though! nnTo repeat what I’ve said on facebook:nnThe predictions are for what the world will be like in 2014. The technology people will be using. nn”Gadgetry will continue to relieve mankind of tedious jobs”nnInn and of itself that doesn’t stand as a prediction because it’s so much nof a given. He needs to provide examples. And he does. He mentions nautomatic meals and the like. But the way I cook meals is exactly the nsame as back in the 70′s. The only difference now is the widespread usen of microwave ovens. Personally I never use microwave ovens to cook nfood as it simply doesn’t taste as nice. I only use them to unfreeze nfood or warm food up. nnu201cCommunications will become sight-sound and you will see as well as hear the person you telephone”nnAlthoughn our technology is capable of this, I personally have never made a videon telephone call where I have seen as well as heard the person I’m nspeaking to. nn”Byn 2014, electroluminescent panels will be in common use. Ceilings and nwalls will glow softly, and in a variety of colors that will change at nthe touch of a push button.u201dnnEr . .no. Completely wrong.nnu201cRobots will neither be common nor very good in 2014, but they will be in existence.u201dnnWell we can always almost guarantee that we’ll be right by making our predictions sufficiently vague!nnu201cThen appliances of 2014 will have no electric cords, of course, for they nwill be powered by long- lived batteries running on radioisotopes.u201dnnTotally wrong. Long lived batteries? That’s a laugh!nnu201c[H]ighwaysn u2026 in the more advanced sections of the world will have passed their npeak in 2014; there will be increasing emphasis on transportation that nmakes the least possible contact with the surface. There will be naircraft, of course, but even ground travel will increasingly take to nthe air a foot or two off the ground.u201dnnAll utterly totally wrong.nnu201c[V]ehiclesn with u2018Robot-brainsu2019 u2026 can be set for particular destinations u2026 that nwill then proceed there without interference by the slow reflexes of a nhuman driver.u201dnnAgainn completely wrong. I have *never* seen a driverless car. Can’t imaginen these google cars will be in widespread usage any time soon. Certainlyn not by next year. Maybe 30 years.nnu201c[W]alln screens will have replaced the ordinary set; but transparent cubes willn be making their appearance in which three-dimensional viewing will be npossible.u201dnnTVn sets are getting bigger and bigger, and slimmer and slimmer, but that nwas always a given. No wall screens. No cubes although a few people ncan watch 3D TV using special glasses. But it’s not in widespread usagen and I personally have never seen 3D TV. Nor can I imagine 3D TV (at nleast where one has to wear glasses) ever really taking off. So anothern fail.nnu201c[T]he world population will be 6,500,000,000″nnFairly accurate, but it’s another prediction which was very obvious.nnu201cOrdinaryn agriculture will keep up with great difficulty and there will be nu2018farmsu2019 turning to the more efficient micro-organisms. Processed yeast nand algae products will be available in a variety of flavors”.nnAnother fail.nn”Then world of A.D. 2014 will have few routine jobs that cannot be done nbetter by some machine than by any human being. Mankind will therefore nhave become largely a race of machine tenders”.nnHow is a routine job defined? Many routine jobs are done better by machines, but most are not. So a fail. nn”Alln the high-school students will be taught the fundamentals of computer ntechnology will become proficient in binary arithmetic and will be ntrained to perfection in the use of the computer languages that will nhave developed out of those like the contemporary u201cFortran.u201d”nnWelln I guess school children are taught how to use computers. I’m pretty nsure that computer programming won’t be compulsory though, and doubt nthat they are proficient at binary arithmetic!nn”[M]ankindn will suffer badly from the disease of boredom, a disease spreading moren widely each year and growing in intensity. This will have serious nmental, emotional and sociological consequences, and I dare say that npsychiatry will be far and away the most important medical specialty in n2014.u201dnnAll false. A lot of us could never get bored with the advent of the Internet!nnu201d[T]he most glorious single word in the vocabulary will have become work!u201d in our u201da society of enforced leisure.u201dnnEh?? he’s having a larrrf! Work is a 4 letter word!

  35. rejane florinda says . . . | September 10, 2013 / 4:09 am

    There you go, we have different visions of our current situation and of what a prediction is. Tell you what: try to make predictions from now to 2024, and then, if we live to see if you were right, we can come back to this discussion. Right now it just doesn’t make sense to me, so I’ll go back to my asimov book (this whole thing made me want to read it again..)n.

  36. Ian Wardell says . . . | September 10, 2013 / 5:17 am

    When predicting the future it has to be technology which is in common usage.nn2024? Well I’ll predict everything will be more or less the same.nnOK google glasses will have limited success when they are first launched. But later models will become more and more popular as all the issues are ironed out. It’ll be like the history of mobile phones (cell phones). At first very few people will have them, but eventually they became all pervasive.nnPeople will not make a one way trip to Mars in April 2023 to live the rest of their lives there! I just can’t see that happening, at least not by that time.nnSmart watches will find a market, but they will never become that popular. They’re too small and people will prefer their smartphones.nnMuch less stress will be placed on the notion that saturated fats are a great evil. It will be increasingly recognised by 2024 that it is sugar and refined carbs, rather than dietary fat and lack of exercise, which is largely responsible for rising obesity rates and ill-health.nnThere will be more doubt be expressed regarding catastrophic anthropogenic global warming. The Earth may have heated up, and this might partly be due to the activities of man, but it won’t be as bad as many scientists are currently predicting.

  37. Ian Wardell says . . . | September 10, 2013 / 5:18 am

    As a matter of interest I made some prediction on facebook back in May 2011:nn1. Capitalist economies will continue to be characterised bynbust and boom, at least until the end of this century.nn2. Global warming might occur, but it will not be particularly significant.nn3. We won’t land on the moon again for the next 20 years.nn4. Nobody will land on Mars until at least 2080nn5. 3D TV using those glasses will not take off.nn6. We will never be able to create conscious robots.nn7. Androids who can maybe be confused for real human beings (even though not conscious)nwill not be developed before the year 2800.

  38. rejane florinda says . . . | September 10, 2013 / 12:04 pm

    ok, Ian.nSee you in ten years…

  39. rejane florinda says . . . | September 10, 2013 / 12:12 pm

    as I said, it is a matter of perspective. None of the predictions you are making are specific enough to be proven right or wrong. You are just guessing, and without any scientific data or research to support your predictions, they lack the same accuracy you are saying asimov does not present in his own guessing.

  40. Ian Wardell says . . . | September 10, 2013 / 12:19 pm

    If I was merely guessing I wouldn’t have bothered to type it. I’m giving predictions to the best of my ability. nnAs I said on facebook where I pasted the same predictions:nn”I nthink making predictions is extraordinarily difficult. And I don’t haven the knowledge to attempt such a thing. However I decided not to be nboring and gave it a crack anyway”.

  41. Ian Wardell says . . . | September 11, 2013 / 6:40 am

    Not sure if you’re being serious or not. But I think I might as well type up my predictions on my blog over the next few days on there. Pay a visit on 11th Sep 2024 and make a comment, regardless of whether I’m still alive or not. Don’t think many people will be interested, the predictions are very mundane and cautious!nnhttp://ianwardell.blogspot.co.uk/2011/03/are-perceptual-illusions-always.html

  42. rejane florinda says . . . | September 11, 2013 / 8:37 am

    You can’t take a hint, can you? Maybe I should be more clear: I don’t think it matters. If you think you are better than Isaac Asimov good for you. I just don’t think the same as you and don’t want to discuss it further.

  43. Ian Wardell says . . . | September 11, 2013 / 9:08 am

    WOW! You’re stark staring bonkers!nnIf a “hint” to terminate the conversation equates to requesting me to make predictions and re-commencing our conversation 11 years hence to see if my predictions have come true, then indeed I’m unable to take your “hints”.nnI have never said nor insinuated I am any better than Asimov in making predictions — try reading what I say. I think everyone is pretty hopeless at predicting. Asimov does slightly better than most, but that isn’t saying a great deal.nnNo I have insufficient interest in reading that book. For one thing people are hopeless at predicting, and besides there’s too many other more important non-fiction books to read.nnNow go away and stop pestering me with your asinine remarks . .

  44. rejane florinda says . . . | September 12, 2013 / 1:18 am

    Very good way to save face: offending the opposite side of the conversation. I went away but I didn’t want to hurt your feelings, oh mighty Ian. Shouldn’t have bothered that much, seen that you don’t have any trouble in attacking me for lack of interest. I stopped being interested when I saw you were talking to yourself, not with me. Have a nice future.

  45. rejane florinda says . . . | September 12, 2013 / 1:23 am

    Man, this was fun! we should do it again some time…

  46. rg57 says . . . | September 12, 2013 / 11:39 pm

    You regard these predictions as “right”?nnnMost of these are seriously off the mark.

  47. cecilia says . . . | September 13, 2013 / 3:03 pm

    you mean, Before Bush – when things really went to sh*t.nalthough things were starting to go bad for the middle class during Reagan

  48. cecilia says . . . | September 13, 2013 / 3:08 pm

    they are not common but some cell phones recharge wirelessly right now. I believe the Samsung S4 is one. So Asimov may only be off by 5 years on that “prediction” depending on whether or not that technology catches on

  49. cecilia says . . . | September 13, 2013 / 3:14 pm

    yeah, WHERE are the Buckley’s of today???? nThey don’t exist.nnDo I miss his erudite conversations. You got smarter just listening to him. Even if you agreed or disagreed here and there. You had to respect him.nnit’s impossible to respect the knuckle dragging religious obsessed teabaggers of today

  50. Cpt_Justice says . . . | September 15, 2013 / 12:20 am
  51. credulousdolt says . . . | September 26, 2013 / 1:28 pm

    Well, it is AmeriKKKa, so you are free to go fuck yourself. Love the John Wayne bullshit with your avatar. Simple ape.

  52. grayjohn says . . . | September 28, 2013 / 12:17 pm

    Better to be a simple ape than a lobotomized progtard chimp like you. You aren’t worthy of a drop of John Waynes piss so STFU, and go back to masturbating to your moms picture.

  53. grayjohn says . . . | September 28, 2013 / 4:00 pm

    All true. Thanks for the clarification.

  54. grayjohn says . . . | September 28, 2013 / 4:06 pm

    So have I, since the 3rd grade.. That is around 51 years. I was never bored. I was sad, without purpose, confused, self loathing, half crazy sometimes, but never bored. But then, no two people experience depression the same way The only thing we all have in common is suffering.

  55. Jake VanWagoner says . . . | October 2, 2013 / 2:33 pm

    My fecal matter has made more interesting and accurate political comments than you.

  56. Jake VanWagoner says . . . | October 2, 2013 / 2:35 pm

    ” Schools will have to be oriented in this directionu2026. All the high-school students will be taught the fundamentals of computer technology will become proficient in binary arithmetic and will be trained to perfection in the use of the computer languages that will have developed out of those like the contemporary u201cFortran.u201d”nnnShould have been true. It would have been if not for the entrenched crapfest we call an education system.

  57. Jake VanWagoner says . . . | October 2, 2013 / 2:38 pm

    u201cOrdinary agriculture will keep up with great difficulty and there will be u2018farmsu2019 turning to the more efficient micro-organisms. Processed yeast and algae products will be available in a variety of flavors.u201d”nnnRight concept, but his timing is off.nThe october 2013 Wired magazine has an article on “the wonders of processed food,” which has a blurb on synthetic food.

  58. Thinh dang van says . . . | October 3, 2013 / 8:01 pm

    He didn’t foresee prog asswipes like you either. nghe thuat duong pho|giay patin|giay patin x2

  59. andrea says . . . | October 4, 2013 / 3:36 am

    Indeed, “no two people experience depression the same way”, and some describe boredom as a part of it: http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/depression-part-two.htmlnn:|

  60. Open Culture says . . . | October 7, 2013 / 6:37 pm

    Hi there,nnnI’m just curious what Facebook page just mentioned our post. Anyone know? Thanks in advance.nnnCheers,nDan (editor)

  61. Cameron says . . . | October 8, 2013 / 8:25 am

    There would have been equal proportions of children with ADHD back then, the only thing that has changed is we have become better at diagnosing it, and Big Pharma realised more diagnoses= more drugs sold.

  62. Ray O'Rourke says . . . | October 8, 2013 / 10:10 am

    Or perhaps better at treating the symptoms. We didn’t throw kids on a medication they’d have to take their entire lives, rather it was handled properly through behavior modification – learn how to behave properly rather than being given free reign to act up however you’d like (which seems to be today’s method of raising children). Instead, we were disciplined & taught you don’t act up like that. They’d rather pay heavily overpriced charges for a medication without any actual curing of the problem.

  63. credulousdolt says . . . | October 12, 2013 / 4:36 pm

    Poor punctuation, genius. Neatness counts. Love what you fuckwits are doing with western civ, by the way.

  64. credulousdolt says . . . | October 12, 2013 / 4:37 pm

    You might consider spending more time with it.

  65. Jake VanWagoner says . . . | October 12, 2013 / 10:00 pm

    Still more pleasant than spending time with a bigot like yourself.

  66. grayjohn says . . . | October 13, 2013 / 6:17 am

    Actually, spell check is wrong. A possessive shouldn’t have an apostrophe. See, I learned to spell before computers, back when it mattered. So, ESAD genius..

  67. anounymous says . . . | November 13, 2013 / 4:06 am

    I will never go anywhere else now that I found you. This is high-class service and the result of your love spell came so fast! Thank you again Doc Obodo n contact Doc @ templeofanswer@hotmail.co.uk or call +2348155425481 for love spellnfrom maggi

  68. Jack says . . . | December 30, 2013 / 4:34 pm

    At least he didn’t start some hokey religion for whacked-out ego-celebs.

  69. zohaib says . . . | April 14, 2014 / 4:18 am

    we can not say all of his predictions are right but 50% are right …..this also a big achievment for him

  70. LD Bottorff says . . . | July 2, 2014 / 10:41 am

    Sorry to disappoint you, but Asimov did NOT predict the Iridium communications system. He specifically referenced synchronous satellites hovering in space. He was essentially wrong on most of these predictions. But if anyone has the number I can use to direct dial someone at a weather station at the south pole, let me know.

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