Beyond the News

Predictions from one century ago

Yahoo! published today an article about the predictions made by John Elfreth Watkins Jr on “The Ladies Home Journal” in 1900. According to the Web site, Watkins claimed that things like mobile phone would be widely available, as well as colored photos taken in China would be published within minutes in American newspapers in hundred years time. Yahoo! however, says that Watkins failed in some predictions, such as: “letters X, C and Q would be eliminated from the alphabet, (unnecessary, Watkins said). Instead, Watkins believed we would all be spelling simply by sound”. (Yahoo!, 2012)


Predictions were made before this statue in center Prague, Czech Republic, been built and they are pretty right Photo: Doreen

To be honest I do not think that he was totally wrong here. If we take in consideration a “txt msg” on a mobile phone we will see that nowadays we more and more write as per the sound of a word. Anyway, taking these predictions forward I tried to design my own projections for the year 2112 and who knows Yahoo! will finally one day publish my article on its front page. I will make sure to advice my grandchildren and great-grandchildren to follow Yahoo! daily. In the meantime, I just let my imagination flow.

One thing that I believe will happen in one hundred years is that companies will be totally controlled and managed by computers. The idea of Quantum computing only makes my thoughts even more realistic, as it is closer to surpass human intelligence. This sounds a bit distressful as the profit has to goes to someone’s pocket. But I am sure that until 2112 there will be a new corporate structure in place to support it.

Also, cars will be totally replaced by airplanes, or they will actually become one thing. Instead to say “I’m driving home”, people will be a bit more concise and say “I’m flying home”.  This will push to the creation of new air traffic regulations globally.

The Internet will become more realistic with the invention of an invisible TV screen that will be available on the streets and accessible by touching. This “tablet” will be floating in the air and will allow us to buy anything, from coffee to airplanes, anywhere at any time. It should eliminate cash desk positions and sales people in several businesses.

By 2112 a holiday on the Moon or Mars will be as common as spending summer in the French Riviera or winter in the Swiss’ Alps. However, we must expect a war that will transcend the earth limits. So, Astronauts will be trained by the army forces to take a front in a “space war”, nevertheless; robots might assume the responsibility in some cases and this might represent a dangerous for human beings as a computer may turn against its creator.

Well, to be honest I rather stop here my predictions because I am becoming too negative. Also, what I have written above is not a “big thing” as we are already able to see many of those predictions happening in a minor level. I just would like to pass the message that whether these predictions will happen or not, it is important for us to leave a legacy to future generations rather than think about today egoistically.

How about you? What are your predictions for the next 100 years? Or, how do you think that the world should be like when your grandchildren and great-grandchildren will be around as big leaders?


Yahoo! (2012) 1900 magazine looks 100 years into the future. Available from: Last accessed: 12 January 2012.


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This entry was posted on January 12, 2012 by in English, General.
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