It's easy to predict the future. Tim Bray has just concluded an interesting series of postings on what he calls TPSM or Technology Predictor Success Matrix. I've had a belief for a while that actually it's easier than you think to predict the future of technologies. I will limit my comments to technology and computer related predictions, but I bet this applies to other fields as well.
Want to see? I predict that in the future:
- Computers will be able to recognize handwriting
- Computers will be able to understand human spoken language
- There will be pervasive, high bandwidth, wireless connectivity
And let me try some non computer predictions. I predict that in the future:
- Personal aircraft will be a common mode of commuting
- Self-piloting and automated terrestial vehicles (cars) will be commonplace
- There will be a cure for cancer
Ok, enough nonsense.
My point is predicting what will happen eventually is easy... What's hard of course is to predict when.
So the first question to try to pin down a prognosticator is When? Without that, the prediction is more or less useless. What do you think?