03 February 2010

Magic Highway Predicting Today

I've been thinking a lot about predicting the near future, and watching a video like this from 1958 shows the weaknesses starkly.

This is not to say that much of what is predicted didn't come true. Unfortunately much of it did. See for example at 2:44:
..The shape of our cities will change as expanded highway transportation decentralizes our population centers into vast urban areas. The commuter's radius will be expanded many miles...
All of which has certainly happened. And I can appreciate and maybe be nostalgic for the optimism shown in the video, however a more realistic predictor would have seen the negative consequences of 62 million cars on congestion and energy demand.

2 comments:

Quim said...

and it all runs on punch cards!
It's funny, with all the tech they talk about, why would you need roadways?

David Lyman said...

Oh man! The future is going to be so rad! I can't wait!