Recently I was reading an op ed article in our local paper regarding a previous article written by a man named John Elfreth Watkins, jr. Mr. Watkin’s article was written in 1900 and predicted what might happen in the next 100 years. His predictions are pretty interesting and some of them, eerily, are fairly close to the truth if not bang-on. (Click here to see Mr. Elfreth’s complete list)
Anyhow, the columnist of our local paper presented a challenge to his readers and asked us to submit our predictions for the next 100 years. I love the twist and turns that creative writing forces the mind to consider and couldn’t resist taking up the challenge and submitting my own thoughts on the topic. With that being said, here are my humble predictions.
100 Years from Now…
1. Twitter and Facebook will have become so popular and mainstream that they’ll have merged into a massive social conglomerate known as “TwitterFace”. The site will post billions of our thoughts per day. However, that’s not all, the software will have advanced beyond our need to “thumb-type” tweets or posts on tiny little keyboards. Instead, TwitterFace will have developed ESP. All we have to do is think a thought and before we know it the TwitterFace universe will also know that we “plan 2have mashed potatoes with dinner 2nite.”
2. I don’t think gas prices will get any better. To compensate, we’ll invest heavily in electric cars. On the plus side, we’ll finally invent an electric car with an engine that demonstrates more horsepower than that of a gerbil running on a wheel.
3. The electoral college will go away and presidents will be voted in by popular vote.
4. Not dissimilar to sending bits of information through the internet, we’ll have learned how to send tangible things through the internet; particularly food. We’ll call it “FoodNet” (think replicator on Star Trek) Brick and mortar restaurants will become obsolete as their new market will be to provide food direct to your house through the FoodNet. Each house will have a FoodNet station and you will, much like scrolling through the channel guide on your TV, scroll through your FoodNet guide and order dinner. (Personally, I love this idea and so would my boys. I’ve made more pancake dinners on nights when I just didn’t have it in me to cook or the energy to go out. The FoodNet would truly be a big hit in this blogger’s household.)
5. To piggy-back on No.4, although we’ll have tried to “beam” one person from here to there, we’ll not yet have mastered the technique. I think the whole “beam me up Scotty” idea will still be in beta testing 100 years from now.
6. Going to the Dry Cleaners will be a thing of the past. Each home will not only have it’s own washer and dryer, it will also have it’s own dry cleaning unit. Thus ending the frantic battle of getting to the dry cleaners before they close.
7. William Shatner will still be alive and doing Priceline ads, despite having been killed off several times through multiple iterations of commercials.
8. Since the crash of the Concord, in 100 years I predict engineers will have perfected supersonic travel & ALL airlines will offer it to travelers. Unfortunately, this will increase the cost of airline travel. So, to provide us incentive to fly the friendly skies, they’ll convince us that once we become “super-duper-extra-gold-platinum” status, we no longer have to pay for additional luggage.
9. Spiders will become extinct…along with silver fish. At least I hope that’ll be the case.
10. The average age for men and women will have increased to 119 years. Researchers will discover that this increase in age has resulted from a happier, less frenzied lifestyle. Women no longer fear unexpected spiders creeping and crawling in their space. There is no more frantic race to the dry cleaners because they, once again, forgot to pick up their husband’s dry cleaning that he needs for a trip tomorrow, until 10 minutes before the cleaners closes. Women around the world are delighted that they can quickly and effortlessly answer the age-old question, “What’s for dinner?” In turn, due to the women’s happier disposition, men are finding life to be less stressful. Quite enjoyable, as a matter of fact. TwitterFace will be flooded with positive tweets/posts. Men and women will find they have more time and energy to do more. They’ll decide to take more trips…go and see the world. Seeing as how none of us will be at any airline’s “super-duper-extra-gold-platinum” status, it is a good thing William Shatner will still be alive and promoting Priceline. Without him, I don’t think any of us could afford supersonic travel.