Moments When I’ve Seen and Described Our Technosocial Future

The first couple decades of my career were in consulting and technology, especially helping organizations chart a path through the torrent of technology innovations.

Along the way, I discovered I was consistently describing things that materialized later. I seldom named them memorably — my "zines" turned out to be called "weblogs" — but my instincts were excellent. Here are some examples I remember:

  • In 1981, after Playing Gomoku Online and Exchanging a File with a Reporter with my Apple Two+, I Smelled the Internet. Then Faxes Arrived.
  • In 1985, I Foresaw the Cellular Market in Argentina
  • In 1990, IDM Described the Web
  • In 1991, CIE Described Smartphones (iPhone = 2007)
  • In 1992, I Saw the Unification of Messaging Services
  • In 1993, My Issues of Release 1.0 about Online Community Presaged Social Media
  • In 1994, Visiting Kaplan at OnSale, I Asked “What if your customers could run their own auctions?” (eBay = 1995)
  • In 1995, “What’s a Zine?” Showed Up as Weblogs in 1997
  • In 1995, Newsweek called me a “software seer”
  • In 1997, I Saw Buddy Lists as the Future of Interpersonal Communications
  • In 1997, My "Fridge Door" Showed up as Wikis and Family Apps Later
  • My Law of Convenience May Have Inspired Bezos’s 1-Click Ordering

Here are these stories in my Brain.

Here's what I see on the horizon today.