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My Corner, Your Corner: What happened to flying cars?

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Here we are in 2020 and, all of a sudden, 1970 was 50 years ago.

I thought we would have flying cars by now. What gives?

Are we ready for flying cars? I think not, but there are more and more inventors out there trying their darnedest to make them.

The drone craze has spurned a bevy of companies attempting to create drones for people. That might be the easiest way of cracking the flying car market.

It’s a far cry from the Jetsons’ flying car, but it’s a start.

I’d be curious if there would be “highways” or travel lanes for flying vehicles. And how would a flying car be policed? Like I said, we’re not ready for that.

I found predictions for the year 2020 written many years ago.

In 1967, The Futurist magazine predicted apes would be chauffeuring our vehicles. I guess they missed that one.

Popular Mechanics predicted we’d be traveling in tubes in 1957. The closest tube I know of is the northbound tunnel on the Northeast Extension of the PA Turnpike.

Thomas Edison was a pretty good inventor, but in 1911 he predicted houses and contents would be made from steel. Holy moly, that’s a lot of Rustoleum.

Not too long ago, Wired magazine predicted we would have reached Mars by 2020. There are a few space agencies predicting a Mars launch between 2021 and 2024.

In 1950, Associate Press writer Dorothy Roe said all women would be more than six feet tall with a shoe size of 11 and have shoulders and arms of a truck driver. Nope.

Way back in 1943, the president of IBM predicted there would not be very much use for computers. As of 2014, an estimated 2 billion personal computers were in use.Who would have bought stock from that guy?

Famous sci-fi writer Arthur C. Clarke predicted in 1966 the house of the future would fly by the year 2020. I’m still pushing the flying car, let alone a flying house. Then again, if I had a flying house, I’d fly away from paying property taxes.

Inventor Nikola Tesla should have kept his predictions to electric power because, in 1937, he predicted coffee, tea and tobacco would be no longer used widely and alcohol would still be used. I’ll have a double, please.

You’ve heard of blood banks, no doubt. Modern Mechanix, in a 1940s article, predicted tooth banks would be widespread. I hope Drs. Anthony Polit and John Costello aren’t reading this.

Ladies Home Journal predicted in a 1900 edition that, by 2020, the letters C, X and Q would no longer exist in the English language. So how would Frank Colella and Vito Quaglia sign their checks? Can you say Tony Allaio?

I guess there’s hope for all of us. In 1913, a New York Times reporter predicted we’d all be vegetarians by now. Ron D’Eliseo, you better tell Brenda no lasagna for the family next New Year’s Eve.

In 1951, Popular Mechanics predicted every household would have a personal helicopter. I’d go for that.

Here’s a crazy prediction. Back in 1911, the Royal College of Surgeons of England said that, by 2020, a human’s foot would have morphed into one big toe. Can you say Crocs?

In 1955, a vacuum cleaner president said vacuums would be nuclear-powered. Wait, what?

Again, Popular Mechanics predicted in 1950 that, by the year 2020, we would be cleaning our houses with, not a nuclear vacuum, but a garden hose. Move over, Fred and Wilma Flintstone.

Here’s one too good to be true. In 1966, Time magazine article predicted that, by 2020, everything would be automized by machines, nobody will work and everyone will be rich. Where do I sign up for that?

What’s up for the future?

I believe more and more consumers will cut the cord and watch TV with an antenna or a streaming device. Streaming is gaining market share with Apple, Disney, SlingTV, YouTube TV and others making their mark.

Internet providers like Verizon will have to step up their game with speeds. I’ve been suffering and paying for 1/3 of the speed that I had until I discovered a problem, not with my house, but lines all over the place. Two reasons: 1. Technology is getting older and needs to be revamped. 2. Squirrels are a big issue as they chew from pole to pole.

I would love for all home computers to go wireless, getting service from cell towers instead of telephone poles. There aren’t many squirrels in space.

We won’t see gasoline priced at $3 a gallon as more oil is being produced all over the globe. I’d love to pay between $1 and $1.50 per gallon but that won’t happen, either.

Flat screen TVs will probably not get much better for now. QLED and OLED sets are top of the line, all in 4K. It seems 8K is taking a peek but that won’t happen, either. Look for prices to continue to dip for larger screens.

Cameras will inch closer and closer to being mirrorless. I’m not saying DSLR or film cameras will go away, but the future of photography will move further away from the latter.

No flying cars this year, sadly.

Quote of the week

“Be at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let every new year find you a better man.” – Benjamin Franklin

Thought of the week

“Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.” – Niels Bohr

Bumper sticker

“We pass through this world but once.” – Stephen Jay Gould

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