Author successfully predicts what technology will be like in the future.

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@benjancewicz This was most likely the most profoundly correct prediction of the future 20 years out ever. The last sentence just kills it.

@millihertz @benjancewicz *looks all over her pain in the ass for a literal pocket tape recorder*

Heeeeeey, wait a minute... I WAS LIED TO! :blobrageangry:

/jk :blobpeek:

@benjancewicz the OCRbot failed me, so here's a transcript:

I've got a cell phone, a pocket organizer, a digital camera, a pocket tape recorder, a music player, and somewhere around here, I used to have a color television.

Sometime in the next few years, all of those devices are going to meld into one. It will be a box less than an inch thick and smaller than a deck of cards. (The size will be determined by what's convenient to hold, not by the technology inside.) The box will have a high-res color screen, a microphone, a plug for a headset or earphones, a camera lens, wireless connectivity, cell phone and beeper functions, a television and radio receiver, a digital recorder, and it will have enough processing power and memory to function as a desktop system. It will be able to dock with a keyboard and full-size monitor. Oh yes, and it will handle e-mail, as well.

--> (it's a long sidebar)


Most important of all, it will have both speech recognition and speech synthesis. It will listen and respond in English or whatever language you need, and yes, it will be a translator, too. It will be an agent, going out and doing cyber-errands for you. For instance: I need a Japanese restaurant in Tulsa, near the Ramada Inn. Book a reservation and arrange transportation. If there's no Japanese restaurant, try for Italian. Or, voice-mail Bob as follows: "Bob, we accept your offer, but we'll need a draft of the deal memo by the 15th. Let me know if that's a problem."

I call this device a Personal Information Telecommunications Agent, or Pita for short. The acronym can also stand for Pain In The Ass, which it is equally likely to be, because having all that connectivity is going to destroy what's left of everyone's privacy.

🔔 🔔 🔔

David Gerrold is a Hugo and Nebula award-winning author who writes about computing. Visit his website at

just noticed i mistranscribed the URL in the obvious way :-(

@benjancewicz there were already devises that had that description in 1999

heres all the way back to 1993! (there were color screens then they were just too expensive to produce)

@mangeurdenuage @benjancewicz "Some people think government is a bad thing" would be more fitting for what was presented in the video.
Half the images are from decades before the internet existed.
It's incredible to think some people actually fall for such blatant emotional manipulation.


At that time there was a Psion 5 and a Siemens S35. That combination did almost everything (even with navigation, with TomTom software for Psion)

@benjancewicz one thing i find interesting about that prediction is "enough power for a desktop, can dock with a keyboard and monitor" absolutely came true, technologically, but that use case is tacitly discouraged mostly for business reasons - because the two mobile OS market leaders want people to treat them as consumption appliances, and hardware makers don't want to cannibalize or compete with other categories.


Oh common. That article is from 1999. Nokia communicator started selling in 1996.

That's more like Nokias business plan at the time than a prediction.

@benjancewicz David Gerrold is also the writer of the classic ST:TOS episode "The Trouble With Tribbles".


one of the iconic writers from Star Trek!

most famous for writing the classic episode "The Trouble with Tribbles"

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