Futurology: The tricky art of knowing what will happen next

By Finlo Rohrer, BBC

Perhaps one of the most celebrated pieces of futurology by a science fiction author was Arthur C Clarke’s prediction of a network of satellites in geostationary orbits [effectively remaining at the same spot in relation to a fixed point back on earth]. The idea of satellites in geostationary orbit had been floated before but Clarke was the first to see the possibilities for their use as relays for broadcasting and communications. And HG Wells was years ahead of his time, predicting nuclear weapons in 1914, and later inspiring physicist Leo Szilard. “The top method is simply to stay keenly attuned to trends in the laboratories and research centres around the world, taking note of even things that seem impractical or useless,” says Brin.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-12058575

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