The worst predictions of future technology we use today

1. An old article from the New York Times

"A rocket will never be able to leave the Earth’s atmosphere.” - New York Times - 1936. 

2. Mary Somerville, pioneer of radio educational broadcasts

“Television won’t last. It’s a flash in the pan.” - Mary Somerville, pioneer of radio educationa     l broadcasts - 1948.

3. Albert Einstein's prediction on nuclear energy

There is not the slightest indication that nuclear energy will ever be obtainable. It would mean that the atom would have to be shattered at will.” - Albert Einstein - 1932

4. Charlie Chaplin "The cinema is a fad"

"The cinema is little more than a fad. It’s canned drama. What audiences really want to see is flesh and blood on the stage.” - Charlie Chaplin, actor, producer, director, and studio founder - 1916

5. Robert Metcalfe predicted the internet would collapse by 1996

“I predict the Internet will soon go spectacularly supernova and in 1996 catastrophically collapse. - Robert Metcalfe - 1995

6.Darryl Zanuck predicted that people would get tired of TV in the first 6 months 1946.

"Television won’t be able to hold on to any market it captures after the first six months. People will soon get tired of staring at a plywood box every night.” - Darryl Zanuck, movie producer, 20th Century Fox - 1946.

7. Automobile was only a fad

“The horse is here to stay but the automobile is only a novelty - a fad.” - The president of the Michigan Savings Bank advising Henry Ford’s lawyer, Horace Rackham, not to invest in the Ford Motor Co. 1903

8. Planes wont hold more than 10 people

“There will never be a bigger plane built.” - A Boeing engineer, after the first flight of the 247, a twin engine plane that holds ten people

9. 32 bit operating system will never be a thing

“We will never make a 32 bit operating system.” - Bill Gates

10. x-rays are a hoax

“X-rays will prove to be a hoax.” - Lord Kelvin, President of the Royal Society, 1883.

11. Women will around 6 feet tall by the year 2000

"There's scientific evidence to predict that by the year 2000 all woman will be six feet tall." - Dorothy Roe - 1950.

12. Telephone has no value to us

“This ‘telephone’ has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication. The device is inherently of no value to us.” A memo at Western Union, 1878 (or 1876).

13. People have no need for computers at home

“There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home.” - Ken Olson, president, chairman and founder of Digital Equipment Corp. (DEC), maker of big business mainframe computers, arguing against the PC in 1977.

14. Passengers wont be-able to breathe at high speeds

“Rail travel at high speed is not possible because passengers, unable to breathe, would die of asphyxia.” — Dr Dionysys Larder (1793-1859), professor of Natural Philosophy and Astronomy, University College London. (China's  bullet train will soon be-able to travel at 600 km/h.)

15. Home taping will kill the music industry

“Home Taping Is Killing Music” - A 1980s campaign by the BPI, claiming that people recording music off the radio onto cassette would destroy the music industry.

16. We have messenger boys we dont need phones 

(Again>>) “The Americans have need of the telephone, but we do not. We have plenty of messenger boys.” - Sir William Preece, Chief Engineer, British Post Office - 1878.

17. The electric light wont stay for long

“When the Paris Exhibition [of 1878] closes, electric light will close with it and no more will be heard of it.” – Oxford professor Erasmus Wilson

18. steamboats where apparently nonsense

“How, sir, would you make a ship sail against the wind and currents by lighting a bonfire under her deck? I pray you, excuse me, I have not the time to listen to such nonsense.” - Napoleon Bonaparte, when told of Robert Fulton’s steamboat - 1800s

19. no one would buy computers

 (Once again >>)"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers" - Thomas Watson - 1943

20. cellphones wont replace wire systems

"Cellular phones will absolutely not replace local wire systems." - pioneer of wireless communication Marty Cooper - 1981


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