[extropy-chat] The Dramatic Future Is Always 20-30 Years Away

Dirk Bruere dirk.bruere at gmail.com
Sun Oct 2 21:46:49 UTC 2005

On 9/30/05, Robin Hanson <rhanson at gmu.edu> wrote:
> I've heard many times how dramatic forecasts for the future tend to
> be about 20-30 years away. That is, fusion break-even, space
> colonies, and household robots were consistently said to be that far
> into the future, forecasts that remained about that far into even
> 20-30 years after the first such forecasts were made. I just today
> heard that for many7 decades economists like Samuelson forecasted
> that the Soviet Economy would overtake the US economy in about 20-30
> years.
> That timescale is usually sufficient to make any predictions pretty much
impossible, hence implausible ones get their shot at notoriety along with
the likely. In computer tech it's very rare you will see serious speculation
in the industry about where things will be in 10, let alone 30, years.
Biotech is just getting onto the steep part of the curve in the same way.

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