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Post Info TOPIC: Future Wars, as Foreseen in 1900.


Legend

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Future Wars, as Foreseen in 1900.
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Not in the same class as Wells, Verne, or Robida, I'm afraid. (And fellow pedants will agree that the year 2000 was not in the XXI century)

 



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Legend

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Yes, I'll agree that 2000 was the last year of the 20th century! I remember well a feature on the evening news that December, in which the official timekeepers at Greenwich announced that the start of the new century was about to happen - not a year earlier as so many had celebrated.

I also remember one of the British daily papers, probably in their 2nd January issue in 2000, welcoming the supposed new century whilst a souvenir re-print enclosed in the paper - which reproduced the cover of the same publication from a century before, marking the imminent start of the 20th century - was dated 31st December 1900!

A related mistake is the idea of a "year zero": there wasn't one, but last decade the term was bandied about often enough to become mildly irksome.

Looking to the postcards, I'd say they weren't looking all that far into the future: the first one looks like a 1900s Grand Prix with MGs added, whilst the second pair look more 1880 or 1890! I suppose it can only be said that predictions of the future often tend to be wildly inaccurate, whether one considers the fashions or the technologies.

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Legend

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I have to agree with TCT. Some of this looks like Robida, but he was 20 years earlier. Mind you, in Anticipations (1901) Wells expressed confidence that an aeroplane would take off and land safely by the year 2000, if not 1950. This predicting the future business isn't as easy as it looks.

And the attention to detail in the matter of millennia is heartwarming.



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Legend

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James H wrote:
... the attention to detail in the matter of millennia is heartwarming.

The Perth Mint was forced to issue its millennium commemorative as the 2001 Gregorian Millennium coin so as not to be confused with all the 2000 (Ignoramus) commemoratives.  But I could have forgiven all the premature festivities had they been backed up by similar/better observances when it actually happened.  The general failure to do so stands as a permanent blot on the otherwise perfect record of opportunistic commercialism and serves as a stark warning on the perils of "consensus".  Nevermind - the memsahib and I conducted our own celebrations (and New Years Day 2001 was far more pleasant in terms of temperature hereabouts than was the beginning of the preceding year, as wolframalpha reminds me - very important for the enjoyment of the red).

Yes, this prediction thing is tricky (people keep getting mixed up in it).  Poor old Arthur C Clarke wrote about that at length, I seem to recall - "Profiles of the Future".  Wolframalpha?  Do yourself a favour (as dear old Molly was forever saying), look it up if you don't know of it already.  If you need to know anything about anything in the past (meteorological for instance), it just might find the data.  Predicting the past can (otherwise) be remarkably hard too.  Also great for evaluating indefinite integrals (thinking of Arthur C. and his "Tales from the White Hart").



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