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Toward the year 2018 Hardcover – 1968

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Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Cowles Education Corp.; First Edition edition (1968)
  • ASIN: B00005WZIF
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.2 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,702,101 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Scott C. Locklin VINE VOICE on September 14, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I recently wrote a magazine article on how the last 50 years of progress haven't been particularly spectacular. A friend who has actually been around for the last 50 years and involved in the development of new technologies in that period of time recommended I read this book for a view into how people were thinking in 1968. I guess it's easy to laugh at predictions of the future, and there is a whole lot of hindsight bias in this sort of thing, but this book is too funny to pass up a good natured chuckle at the whole thing.

This book gets an astounding amount of stuff right: they knew that communications technology would improve a lot more than it had. They knew that cheap international flights would change immigration and nationality forever. They knew that people would become more "open about their feelings" -though they had no idea that this would be largely a bad thing. They knew that nations might attack each other without identifying themselves -though they didn't quite grasp the concept of non-state actors doing the same thing. They knew the United States (which was probably at around self sufficiency at that point) would be out of oil by 2018. They knew microelectronics would improve tremendously. They knew nuclear proliferation would be an important international issue in the future. They also seemed to realize that Fusion and Solar power required huge technical breakthroughs to become practical sources of energy. Finally, they contradicted the widespread idea that overpopulation would cause mass starvation at some point. They were correct: this still hasn't happened.

Here are some bold predictions which did not come true.
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Format: Hardcover
Written in 1968 to look 50 years into the future on a number of topics. Figures 10 billion people by 2018.

Weapons: Written during Viet Nam it compares 1868, 1918, to 1968 to get an idea of how difficult it is to compare. Mentions a possible hover craft, something that sounds like IED, better batteries, pocket electronics, laser (bar code reader?), idea of SDI, and possibly anti-gravity belts in the military. Also mentions a disintegrator ray (taser?). Wonders if weather can be controlled to use as a weapon. Mentions war by hardware proxy (drones?) suit case bombs.

Space- Communication satellites to perhaps spy on crops, weather satellites and photography. All it says is explore planets--

Transportation by VP of Pan Am- birds and fish move around, man is a homebody. Gives history of transportation. Highspeed rail, 700 to 1000 people on a plane, highspeed plane (Concord?), computerized travel documents (yes) like a credit card but a chance for counterfit.

Communications- computers that can talk (yes), picturephone service (yes), doctors can use service, and be able to record programs (yes). Satellites semd signals to homes, transmission of pix and text (yes).

Weather- Thoughts that weather can be controlled, rain can be created.

Education-pictures computer aided, not necessiarly printed page.

Behavior- Compile information, computers could talk, help teach language, child rearing debate, lower inhibitions, decrease in nationalism.

Computer tech-Growth listed in $, holographs predicted, historical virtual reality, idea of war shift, oceans create policy, no nuke war.

Energy-solar power for home use (yes), wind power inconsequential, corn but possible food shortage.
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