Welcome to the future! Well, 2018 that is.

This article is being beamed to multiple devices across the world right now thanks to the Internet – an invention which virtually changed everything we knew about communication technology.

Did you know that writer Mark Twain (1835-1910) had written a short story in 1904 about the “telelectroscope”, which was about creating a network of worldwide information sharing. He was essentially describing what we know as the Internet today.

The interesting thing about this was that he made this prediction OVER A CENTURY AGO!

This week, Neue (@whatsneue) takes a look at tech predictions that actually came true.

#1. Camera Mobile Phones

Edwin Land (Photo: Joyce Dopkeen/Getty Images)

In 1970, Polaroid founder Edwin Land outlined his vision of the future of photography.

“We are still a long way,” he said, “from the camera … that would be, oh, like the telephone: something that you use all day long … a camera which you would use not on the occasion of parties only, or of trips only, or when your grandchildren came to see you, but a camera that you would use as often as your pencil or your eyeglasses.”

He went on to say that it would be “something that was always with you”.

Little did we know back then, he was envisioning the rise of camera mobile phones.

When was the world’s first mobile phone ever to carry a built-in camera?

Kyocera’s VP-210 VisualPhone (Photo: TechSpot)

It was none other than the Kyocera VP-210 (pictured above), which was first sold in Japan in May 1999, more than a year before the Sharp J-SH04 arrived (November 2000, also Japan-only), which is commonly believed to be the first commercially available camera phone.

Nokia’s 7650 arrived in June 2002 as Europe’s first mobile phone with an integrated camera (as well as the first phone running Symbian OS), while the Sanyo SPC-5300 shipped as America’s first handset with a built-in camera in November 2002. (Sources: EyeMagazine, TechSpot)

#2. Drones

Nikola Tesla is seen reading a book in front of the spiral coil of his high-voltage Tesla coil transformer at his East Houston St, New York, laboratory (Photo: Tonnelé and Co)

In 1898, Nikola Tesla demonstrated a wireless and remote-controlled ‘tele-automaton’, which most of us today would refer to as a remote-controlled toy boat.

Harnessing the power of wireless communication, robotics and logic gates, he astounded onlookers with this new technology.

Believing that there would one day be a role for remote-controlled machines, he wasn’t that far off the developments in drone technology that we’ve seen in recent years. (Source: BBC)

(Photos: Shutterstock)

#3. Air Touch Technology

Several movies and TV shows predicted the touchscreen interface, however, it was the film Minority Report (see YouTube clip above) that was most accurate in predicting how universal touch technology would become.

In 2013, researchers at the University of Bristol announced “ultrahaptic” technology, which allows for touchscreen technology without the touching—just like in the movie. (Source: Factinate)

#4. Wearable Tech Gear

The 1989 sci-fi movie ‘Back To The Future: Part II’ depicted multiple futuristic technologies (as you as seen in the YouTube clip above). Among the things that caught our attention was the smart eyewear that Marty McFly’s children are using in the film. Is it a head-mounted virtual reality device like the Oculus Rift, or is it more like Google Glass? The device apparently handles phone call notifications. (Source: CheatSheet)

File photo shows a girl trying out a virtual reality headset (Photo: Shutterstock)

#5. iPad Was Predicted Back In 1960s

Famed science fiction author Arthur C Clarke employed an unprecedented collaborative process with Stanley Kubrick to complete the film and novel versions of 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Author and director frequently compared notes; the novel and screenplay were written simultaneously, with Kubrick contributing heavily to Clarke’s work and vice-versa. One bizarrely accurate prediction makes a prominent appearance in both: in the film 2001, two astronauts can be seen reading a newspaper on something that looks suspiciously like an iPad (see clip above).

As odd as that is, the description – and name – of the device given in Clarke’s novel is even more startling: “When he had tired of official reports, memoranda and minutes, he would plug his … Newspad into the ship’s information circuit and scan the latest reports from Earth. One by one, he would conjure up the world’s major electronic papers … Each had its own two-digit reference. When he punched that, a postage-sized rectangle would expand till it neatly filled the screen and he could read it with comfort. When he finished he could flash back to the complete page and select a new subject for detailed examination … one could spend an entire lifetime doing nothing but absorbing the ever-changing flow of information from the news satellites.”

This description, and the depiction in Kubrick’s film, were so dead-on that Samsung used them in defense of its Galaxy tablet when Apple sued for patent infringement. (Source: ListVerse)

#6. Cloud Computing

Cloud computing, in its essence, is a way to store, retrieve, process and analyze data that is saved over the Internet, instead of an on-premises server or a datacenter that you own. While a majority of people still use physical storage devices, the trend of using cloud for such purposes is prevailing gradually.

All this had been envisioned  in the sci-fi book “Ender’s game” by Orson Scott Card that was published in 1985.

The story revolves around a character saving Earth against an alien attack. The book was later made into a film as well. In the book, the character is shown collaborating and coordinating with several other fellow soldiers as they strategise to fight the enemy.

Cloud computing today allows access to multiple users to documents and other data to plan and strategise about the new budgets and expansion plans, no matter where the team member is located on the globe. The cloud computing has made possible for the expertise around the world to come together and work as a singular unit on projects by removing all the physical barriers and providing a common platform for problem solving and timely completion. However, it is essential for teams to acquire cloud certification to achieve proficiency to seamlessly carry out projects. (Source: QuickStart)

#7. 3D Printers

Fans of Star Trek will remember the replicator. Replicators were devices capable of instantly materializing almost any object with a simple command. While 3D printers can’t quite pull objects out of thin air, they do act similarly to replicators, reproducing jewelry, food, and even body parts. Many tech experts believe that as the technology improves, they will resemble replicators even more closely. (Source: Factinate)

#8. Holograms

A scene from the 1977 movie ‘Star Wars’ (Photo: LucasFilm)

Anybody who has ever seen the 1977 movie ‘Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope’ will remember the scene in which the robot R2-D2 projects a 3-D hologram of Princess Leia imploring Obi-Wan Kenobi for help.

It was only in recent years that 3-D holograms like those in the movies have come to fruition.

In 2017, Australian company Euclideon Holographics debuted what was claimed to be the world’s first holographic table, utilising glasses to create a realistic 3-D environment that can be manipulated by users.

According to the company, its hologram table can display digital models of cities or buildings as miniatures, with the ability to then zoom in down to single blades of grass – or even smaller! Users can pick up objects and move them around, or prepare holographic presentations to convey ideas. The holograms it projects can project up to 60cm high or appear to sink a meter into the table. (Sources: CNN, Euclideon Holographics)

(Photo: Euclideon Holographics)

Do You Have Anything To Add?

What other tech predictions became a reality? What would you like to have added to the list above? Tell us in the comments section below or reach out to Neue via Facebook or Instagram.