Overestimating the Pace of Technology in the 1960s
The film 2001, made in 1968, features an intelligent computer and routine trips to the moon. It also assumes that telephone technology will similarly advance, as this phone call from space indicates. In fact, even apart from the space angle, picture-phone calls are hardly routine. (On the other hand, no hint of a cellphone is found.) The excerpt indicates two tendencies. We tend to overestimate the current pace of technical change relative to the past (and so project wonders to be in the near future). And we tend to miss actual technical innovations of the future in making such projections. (The child in the phone call depicted is in fact the daughter of director Stanley Kubrick. The call costs $1.70 but we don't know what rate of inflation Kubrick was assuming between 1968 when the film came out and 2001.)
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