Interesting story on John Elfreth Watkins prediction made in The Ladie’s Home Journal back in December 1900. Interestingly accurate in some cases, but like Nostradamus or Biblical interpretation, we often see the past through the lens of the present and forgive the details. Some of the concepts are pretty close, but the details aren’t. And in some cases, he was just flat wrong.
Extrapolation and speculation will lead to some ideas that may well come true. Scenario planners can tell you that if you just have one list, then you will miss the mark more often than not. With scenarios you force yourself to look at the same data from many different perspectives and therefore generate more possibilities than your biases will allow.
Listen to, or read, the NPR interview here: