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Old 02-16-07, 08:57 PM   #1
Platy
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What may happen in the next 100 years

From the Ladies' Home Journal, December 1900.

“These prophecies will seem strange, almost impossible. Yet, they have come from the most learned and conservative minds in America. To the wisest and most careful men in our greatest institutions of science and learning I have gone, asking each in his turn to forecast for me what, in his opinion, will have been wrought in his own field of investigation before the dawn of 2001 - a century from now. These opinions I have carefully transcribed.”

http://www.yorktownhistory.org/homep...redictions.htm

This is a very interesting article. I thought the predictions were mostly on target. The predictions that were wrong are, in a way, more interesting than the ones that were right.
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Old 02-17-07, 12:32 AM   #2
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Gymnastics will begin in the nursery, where toys and games will be designed to strengthen the muscles. Exercise will be compulsory in the schools
Well, in Japan perhaps but not the USA.
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Old 02-17-07, 12:35 AM   #3
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Some of these are amazing!

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Man will See Around the World. Persons and things of all kinds will be brought within focus of cameras connected electrically with screens at opposite ends of circuits, thousands of miles at a span.
the internet and satellites.
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Old 02-17-07, 01:14 AM   #4
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Well, in Japan perhaps but not the USA.
Actually, it is happening in the US.
My son, who is 19 months old, had plenty of toys that were designed for physical development. And all of the ones he has now are the same. If you really take a look at childrens toys you will see it. They are being designed for physical and mental developement. Which is a big difference from the toys of my childhood which actually contained gun powder and projectiles.
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Old 02-17-07, 02:41 AM   #5
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A man or woman unable to walk ten miles at a stretch will be regarded as a weakling.
I think this is the biggest missed prediction. The writer was quick to see the advantages of automobiles but he didn't foresee the development of "car dependency syndrome".
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Old 02-17-07, 03:36 AM   #6
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think about it though, how much of the average population, in the states at least, is already "weak"?
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Old 02-17-07, 09:13 AM   #7
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Prediction #6: Automobiles will be cheaper than horses are today. Farmers will own automobile hay-wagons, automobile truck-wagons, plows, harrows and hay-rakes. A one-pound motor in one of these vehicles will do the work of a pair of horses or more. Children will ride in automobile sleighs in winter. Automobiles will have been substituted for every horse vehicle now known. There will be, as already exist today, automobile hearses, automobile police patrols, automobile ambulances, automobile street sweepers. The horse in harness will be as scarce, if, indeed, not even scarcer, then as the yoked ox is today.
When they say "automobile" I wonder if they mean the 4-wheel variety with internal combustion engines or the 2-wheeled self-propelled unit? At the time of these predictions, bicycles were in wide distribution throughout Europe and the US. Suddenly, travel beyond walkable distances was possible w/o the expense of owning a horse. The era of the 4-wheeler hadn't yet happened. Just think, if it wasn't for Henry Ford, this forum might now be called the "bike-free" forum
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Old 02-17-07, 09:36 AM   #8
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...The era of the 4-wheeler hadn't yet happened. Just think, if it wasn't for Henry Ford, this forum might now be called the "bike-free" forum
Car-wise, things were already happening very fast in the late 1890s.

"On the evening of March 6, 1896, a Benz car appeared on the streets of Detroit. Ford followed it around on his bicycle. Three months later, he produced the Quadricycle, a four-wheel, tiller-steered car with two forward speeds and no reverse. He sold it to get the money to build his second car."

http://www.promotex.ca/articles/cawt...1_article.html

By the way, Henry Ford continued to ride a bike recreationally until late in life.
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Old 02-17-07, 09:51 AM   #9
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Car-wise, things were already happening very fast in the late 1890s.
Seems like a very interesting time, technology-wise. I guess because there was no heavy investment in infrastructure, things were moving very fast. Even the designs of bicycle changed enormously in the 20 years between 1880 - 1900. Since that time, the basic design of bicycles hasn't really changed that much.

It seems like when we get a basic design, like the diamond frame bicycle or the 4-wheel automobile chassis, we go with it and just continue to engineer it to death. That's how we go to the point of carbon fiber forks and auto air-conditioning.
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Old 02-17-07, 10:02 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by feba
think about it though, how much of the average population, in the states at least, is already "weak"?
most of it
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Old 02-17-07, 11:15 AM   #11
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...Even the designs of bicycle changed enormously in the 20 years between 1880 - 1900...
Case in point:

Wright Cycle Exchange
1005 West Third Street
Dayton, Ohio

http://www.first-to-fly.com/History/...t_bicycles.htm

"The Wright brothers introduced two inventions on their bicycles. The Van Cleve came with a special "self-oiling hub." Dayton only had 12 miles of paved streets in those days and the dust played havoc with bicycle bearings, causing them to wear quickly. The Wrights sealed the bearings with felt washers and created an oil reservoir inside the hub, cutting down on maintenance...

"In 1900, the Wrights announced a "bicycle pedal that can't come unscrewed." ... Wilbur and Orville used right-hand threads on one pedal post and left-hand threads on the other so the pedaling action tended to tighten both pedals."
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Old 02-17-07, 11:36 AM   #12
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Fun thread! Interesting to note that Harley-Davidson was still making bicycles then. I believe that 1903 was the year they rolled out their first motorcycle.
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Old 02-17-07, 08:40 PM   #13
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>>>>Prediction #4: There Will Be No Street Cars in Our Large Cities. All hurry traffic will be below or high above ground when brought within city limits. In most cities it will be confined to broad subways or tunnels, well lighted and well ventilated, or to high trestles with “moving-sidewalk” stairways leading to the top. These underground or overhead streets will teem with capacious automobile passenger coaches and freight with cushioned wheels. Subways or trestles will be reserved for express trains. Cities, therefore, will be free from all noises.<<<<

The prediction on the fate of street cars was spot on! They predicted the motorcar would run in underground tunnels freeing the cities from all noises. They could not have been more wrong as the motorcar simply replaced the streetcar making the streets noisy, polluted and dangerous.
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Old 02-18-07, 02:39 AM   #14
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US invades Canada for their large oil supplies
http://www.oilcareer.com/images/albian6.jpg

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2006/...oil060111.html
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Old 02-18-07, 02:40 AM   #15
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Old 02-19-07, 05:28 PM   #16
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I found it interesting that they predicted that flying vehicles would be used as powerful military devices (correct) that would be used for almost no freight and passenger travel (incorrect). The prediction was that, instead, trains would be able to take you from the atlantic to the pacific in a day and a half. It seems to me that 250 mile per hour trains would be feasible and much cheaper than air travel-- and also not really slower for trips under 500 miles.
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Old 02-19-07, 11:30 PM   #17
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I found it interesting that they predicted that flying vehicles would be used as powerful military devices (correct) that would be used for almost no freight and passenger travel (incorrect). The prediction was that, instead, trains would be able to take you from the atlantic to the pacific in a day and a half. It seems to me that 250 mile per hour trains would be feasible and much cheaper than air travel-- and also not really slower for trips under 500 miles.
Actually, it does exist, just not in the US. France has the TGV which can go 340 mph (but in commercial use it only does 200 mph so far).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TGV

If only we had that in the US. Heck, even 200 mph would get you from Boston to NY city in just over 1 hour!
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Old 02-19-07, 11:48 PM   #18
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Don't know how feasible this is for rail travel but they've gotten rocket propelled sleds (on rails) to travel 6000+ mph. If they could control it at 1,000 mph and somehow limit the acceleration force, that'd be pretty insane and might actual have an effect on interstate travel.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rocket_sled
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Old 02-20-07, 02:01 AM   #19
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Yeah, look up bullet trains, europe and japan has plenty of them.

And those flying machines they were talking about were airships, which you probably know better as Blimps. I beleive they already had these to some extent, so it's not really that suprising.
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Old 02-20-07, 09:11 AM   #20
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Prediction #11: No Mosquitoes nor Flies. Insect screens will be unnecessary. Mosquitoes, house-flies and roaches will have been practically exterminated. Boards of health will have destroyed all mosquito haunts and breeding-grounds, drained all stagnant pools, filled in all swamp-lands, and chemically treated all still-water streams. The extermination of the horse and its stable will reduce the house-fly.
why haven't we exterminated the horse? I think its about time horses paid the piper.
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Old 02-20-07, 09:16 AM   #21
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It is true, have horses, have bugs.
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Old 02-20-07, 09:01 PM   #22
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why haven't we exterminated the horse? I think its about time horses paid the piper.
Hopefully we've learned enough to know that elminating flies and mosquitos could have dire unforseen consequences.
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Old 02-21-07, 12:46 AM   #23
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Is this authentic? Prediction #2 mentions that people will live to fifty instead of the present thirty-five? Life spans haven't really changed in thousands (if not hundreds of thousands) of years, dispite what commercials would have you believe. It's around 72 on average.
Outside of disease & accidents.
I could see maybe predicting a lifespan of 100+ but in 1900 someone living into there 60's was quite common, they would think dying at 35 was unusual.
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Old 02-21-07, 04:17 AM   #24
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Is this authentic? Prediction #2 mentions that people will live to fifty instead of the present thirty-five? Life spans haven't really changed in thousands (if not hundreds of thousands) of years, dispite what commercials would have you believe. It's around 72 on average.
Outside of disease & accidents.
I could see maybe predicting a lifespan of 100+ but in 1900 someone living into there 60's was quite common, they would think dying at 35 was unusual.
Might be a bit of poetic license if you will, however since 1900 the average age has gone from 47.3 to 77.5 a gain of 30 years.

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Old 02-21-07, 06:29 AM   #25
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It's around 72 on average.
Outside of disease & accidents.
Uh, disease and accidents are most of what make up Life Expectancy... without disease and accidents, every country would have the same LE, and it would be well into the 80s. Discounting disease and accidents from age of death is like discounting bullet wounds and bomb blasts from casualties in a war.
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