In the wonderous future of 2011

In 1911 the Ladies’ Home Journal published a number of predictions about how the world would be changed over the next 100 years. Apart from the obvious misses, there are a few surprising omissions. Airships are discussed, for example, but not heavier-than-air planes, even though the Wright Brothers had flown their Flyer eight years previously. Most of the electronics we take for granted obviously could not reasonably have been predicted, but the massive proliferation of recorded music probably could have been (the phonograph was patented in 1877).

There are, however, quite a few surprising hits. Central heating and air conditioning, long distance transmission of images in real time, and “forts on wheels” (i.e. tanks) making cavalry charges, to pick three notable examples.

Also interesting is the apparent complete lack of any concern given to preserving nature.

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