Don't predict anything
“I’ve always been very careful never to predict anything that has not already happened.”
— Marshall McLuhan
Warren Ellis was not as kind when he spoke of this in his closing address at an event in Manchester called FutureEverything:
“….here we stand in the dark, in the rubble of busted ideas and broken promises and ten thousand conference lanyards. No future left.
I think that’s probably got to stop, don’t you?
Predicting causes litter. Prediction causes enough embarrassment that you have to leave down and set up shop again two towns up the road. Prediction is the best circus act of all. But it is just an act. It’s a carny turn. Stop doing it. Or I will make you wear clown shoes while you do it.”
.. Talking about the future of the spaceplane without talking about the politics, economics, environment surrounding it… you might as well be just fucking juggling. It’s a meaningless act. Talking about the future of music strictly in terms of compression rates and headphones is wasted breath. And yet I see this all the time. And it’s so rare that the people talking about the future of space travel talk to the people talking about the future of music, and so few of them seem to talk to the people involved in political futures except as lobbyists. We’re all afraid to be wrong because we’ve done it so much, under the auspices of prediction, that now we specialize in tiny fields that we can get our arms around. There are people out there so heavily specialized in wearable technology that they call shirts with networked devices built into them “wearable shirts.” They’re so deep into their own silo of futurism that they’ve forgotten how shirts work.