Timeline of the future in forecasts

Timeline of the future in forecasts

This timeline of the future in forecasts is a timeline of credible forecasts of near-future events and developments in all areas of science, technology, society and the environment.

Forecasting informs the planning and policy making processes within all governments and commercial organizations. Forecasts may be either qualitative extrapolations from a current state or quantitative output from models or simulations based on historical data and trends.

Forecasts are published by:

:*research and statistics departments within governments and leading commercial companies in a given field.:*NGOs, think tanks and international organisations.:*professional organisations and their associations and governing bodies.:*academic bodies.

In addition, leading experts in a particular field develop and publish their own individual forecasts, and notable thinkers called futurists formulate independent visions of the future.

Forecasting is obviously not an exact science, and different experts may legitimately forecast different dates for the same event, because they use different models or assumptions. This timeline is organised by topic, allowing different forecasts of the same event to be compared side by side. Although the forecasts in this timeline are produced by professionals, no judgement is made as to their accuracy.


As far back as the nineteenth century, scholars and scientists made predictions about the future. Lord Kelvin, "One Heck of a Prognosticator, president of the Royal Society in the 1890s, and disbeliever in virtually every scientific discovery," claimed that “Radio has no future,” “I have not the smallest molecule of faith in aerial navigation other than ballooning,” and “X-rays will prove to be a hoax;” Orville Wright, in 1908 claimed that “No flying machine will ever fly from New York to Paris;” and Irving Thalberg, MGM movie producer, asserted in 1927 that “Novelty is always welcome, but talking pictures are just a fad.” [See editions of [http://www.workman.com/products/9780761143253/ this] calendar.] Thus, making forecasts of the future's timeline has a historic basis in which many of the predictions by even experts have proven inaccurate.

List of future events (structured by topic)

Artificial intelligence and robotics

*Robots capable of manual labor tasks--
**2007 - a cooking robot in some restaurants (2018 in private homes), Pansum, developers of AIC, 2006 [ [http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2006-10/18/content_710686.htm Robots may force chefs out of the kitchen] , China Daily]
**2009 - robots that perform searching and fetching tasks in unmodified library environment, Professor Angel del Pobil (University Jaume I, Spain), 2004 [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/3897583.stm Robots get bookish in libraries] , BBC News]
**2015-2020 - every South Korean household will have a robot and many European, The Ministry of Information and Communication (South Korea), 2007 [http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/1/hi/technology/6425927.stm Robotic age poses ethical dilemma] , BBC News]
**2018 - robots will routinely carry out surgery, South Korea government 2007
**2022 - intelligent robots that sense their environment, make decisions, and learn are used in 30% of households and organizations - TechCast [http://www.techcast.org/Forecasts.aspx Latest Forecast Results, TechCast] ]
**2030 - robots capable of performing at human level at most manual jobs Marshall Brain [2003 [http://www.marshallbrain.com/robotic-nation.htm Robotic Nation] , Marshall Brain]
**2034 - robots (home automation systems) performing most household tasks, Helen Greiner, Chairman of iRobot [ [http://features.engadget.com/entry/8154940951659251/ Interview: Helen Greiner, Chairman and Cofounder of iRobot, Corp] ]
*Military robots
** 2015 - one third of US fighting strength will be composed of robots - US Department of Defense, 2006 [http://technology.guardian.co.uk/weekly/story/0,,1930960,00.html Launching a new kind of warfare] , Guardian Online]
** 2035 - first completely autonomous robot soldiers in operation - US Department of Defense, 2006
** 2038 - first completely autonomous robot flying car in operation - US Department of Technology, 2007
*Artificial intelligence
**2019 - $1,000 computer will match the processing power of the human brain - Ray Kurzweil [http://www.kurzweilai.net/articles/art0063.html?printable=1 The Coming Merging of Mind and Machine] , Ray Kurzweil]
**2020 - Artificial Intelligence reaches human levels - Arthur C. Clarke [http://www.kurzweilai.net/meme/frame.html?main=/articles/art0361.html Interview with Arthur C. Clarke, November 30, 2001] ]
**2045 - The Singularity (creation of the first ultraintelligent machine) occurs - Ray Kurzweil [*Citation
authorlink=Raymond Kurzweil
title=The Singularity Is Near
location=New York
**2050 - computer costing a few hundred pounds will have the capacity of the human mind - Hans Moravec [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/from_our_own_correspondent/888059.stm Robots rule OK?] , BBS News]
**2055 - $1,000 computer will match the processing power of all human brains on Earth - Ray Kurzweil

Biology and medicine

*Visual prosthetics
**2007 - a 1Kpixel artificial retina with 1000 electrodes (Department of Energy, 2004) [" [http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2004-10/ddoe-dlu101404.php DOE labs, universities and second sight partner to speed development of 'artificial retina': Restoring sight through science] " (14-Oct-2004).]
**2009 - 60 pixel artificial retina available for $30,000 - Professor Mark Humayun, University of Southern California [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/6368089.stm Trials for 'bionic' eye implants] , BBC News]
*Implantable gadgets
**2011 - digital devices with implantable parts (Joseph Reger, Fujitsu-Siemens Technology Director, 2007, [ [http://prognoz.org/article/lyudi-supermonstry-i-ne-tolko Люди-супермонстры, и не только] ] )
*Use of animal organs for transplantation
**2007 - first genetically modified pig with organs that are not rejected by humans (South Korea's Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, 2004) Fact|date=April 2008
**2010 - practical use of such animal donors in surgery (same source)
* Regenerative medicine
** Widespread use for most tissues and organs - 2020 (Federal Initiative for Regenerative Medicine) [Dick Pelletier, " [http://www.betterhumans.com/blogs/futuretalk/archive/2006/02/14/4337.aspx Regenerative medicine could cure most diseases by 2020] "]
**2014-2024 - (International Association of Biomedical Gerontology, 2004) - comprehensive functional rejuvenation of middle-aged mice [ [http://www.nickbostrom.com/fable/dragon.html#_ftn2 The Fable of the Dragon Tyrant] ]
*Cloning of dinosaurs
**2023 - Arthur C. Clarke
*Reverse engineering of human brain
**2008 - accurate simulation of the cortical column (Blue Brain Project, 2005 [ [http://bluebrainproject.epfl.ch/FAQs.htm The Blue Brain project is the first comprehensive attempt to reverse-engineer the mammalian brain, in order to understand brain function and dysfunction through detailed simulations] ] )
**2025 - Ray Kurzweil, 2005 [Cory Doctorow, " [http://www.asimovs.com/_issue_0506/thoughtexperiments.shtml Thought Experiments: When the Singularity is More Than a Literary Device: An Interview with Futurist-Inventor Ray Kurzweil] "]


*All communications are IP-based
**2014 - Paul Mockapetris, inventor of the DNS system, 2004 [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/3832527.stm Net pioneer predicts web future] , BBC News]


* 1 petaFLOPS supercomputer
** 2008 - Cray current project (2006) [ [http://investors.cray.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=98390&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=873357 Cray Signs $200 Million Contract to Deliver World's Largest Supercomputer to Oak Ridge] , Cray Inc. Press Release]
** 2006 - Riken Japan (July 2006) (NEC MDGrape-3) [ [http://www.engadget.com/2006/07/31/japanese-supercomputer-breaks-the-petaflop-barrier/ Japanese supercomputer breaks the petaflop barrier] ]
* 10 petaFLOPS supercomputer (the amount required to simulate the human brain according to Kurzweil)
**2010 - NEC, Tokyo Institute of Technology [ [http://www.theinquirer.net/gb/inquirer/news/2008/03/20/nec-super-computer-petaflop NEC claims 10-Petaflop supercomputing breakthrough] ]
**2012 - Riken [ [http://www.riken.go.jp/engn/r-world/info/release/news/2006/apr/index.html Taking on the Challenge of a 10-Petaflop Computer] , Riken News April 2006]
* 1 zettaFLOPS supercomputer
**2020 - University of Notre Dame [ [http://www.cse.nd.edu/Reports/2006/TR-2006-15.pdf The Technology Lane on the Road to a Zettaflops] ]
*User interface
**2013 - voice control replace keyboard/mouse interface for 30% of routine tasks - TechCast

Culture and leisure

*Entertainment channels
**2010 - 30% by value of U.S. music, movies, games, and other entertainment is sold online - TechCast
*Virtual reality
**2025 - full immersion virtual reality using direct input to the brain becomes available - Arthur C. Clarke
**2030 - virtual reality allows any type of interaction with anyone, regardless of physical proximity - Ray Kurzweil
**2050 - a team of fully autonomous humanoid robots can win against the human world soccer champion team - RoboCup, 1997 [ [http://www.robocup.org/ RoboCup Official Site] ]


*World population exceeds 7 billion
**2013 - U.S. Census Bureau [http://www.census.gov/ipc/www/idb/worldpop.html U.S. Census Bureau International Database] ]
**2013 - United Nations [http://www0.un.org/esa/population/publications/sixbillion/sixbilpart1.pdf The World at Six Billion] , Population Division of the Department ofEconomic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat]
*World population exceeds 8 billion
**2026 - U.S. Census Bureau
**2028 - United Nations
*World population exceeds 9 billion
**2043 - U.S. Census Bureau
**2054 - United Nations
*World population exceeds 10 billion
**2183 - United Nations
*Other demographic milestones
**2020 - world average life expectancy of new-born child exceeds 70 years - World Resources Institute [http://earthtrends.wri.org/text/population-health/variable-379.html Population, Health and Human Well-being — Demographics: Life expectancy at birth, both sexes] , Earthtrends database]
**2030 - number of people aged 65 or older exceeds 1 billion - Ray Hammond [http://www.plasticseurope.org/Objects/2/Files/Worldin2030executiveSummary-20071121-001-EN-v1.pdf The World in 2030] , Ray Hammond]
**2030 - new-born child in developed country has life expectancy of 130 years - Ray Hammond
**2045 - world average life expectancy of new-born child exceeds 75 years - World Resources Institute


*Peak oil - global oil production peaks
**2010 - Association for the Study of Peak Oil and Gas [ [http://www.aspo-ireland.org/contentFiles/newsletterPDFs/newsletter85_200801.pdf ASPO Newsletter 85, Jan 2008] ]
**2011 - Colin Campbell, Oil Depletion Analysis Centre [ [http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/world-oil-supplies-are-set-to-run-out-faster-than-expected-warn-scientists-453068.html World oil supplies are set to run out faster than expected, warn scientists] , The Independent]
**2013 - French government report [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/4077802.stm 'Peak oil' enters mainstream debate] , BBC News]
*Other energy milestones
**2020 - U.S. carbon emission market exceeds $1 trillion - New Carbon Finance [ [http://www.environmentalleader.com/2008/02/16/prediction-1-trillion-us-carbon-market-by-2020/ Prediction: $1 Trillion U.S. Carbon Market By 2020] ]
**2023 - alternatives to carbon-based fuels provide 30% of all energy used worldwide - TechCast


*Arctic shrinkage - arctic ice-free in summer
**2013 - Professor Wieslaw Maslowski, U. S. Naval Postgraduate School [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7139797.stm Arctic summers ice-free 'by 2013'] , BBC News]
**2040 - National Center for Atmospheric Research [ [http://www.ucar.edu/news/releases/2006/arctic.shtml Abrupt Ice Retreat Could Produce Ice-Free Arctic Summers by 2040] , NCAR Press Release]
*Arctic shrinkage - arctic ice-free all year
**2020 - Ted Scambos, National Snow and Ice Center [ [http://www.ethical-insight.com/articles/941/ Arctic could be ice-free by 2020, beating predictions by 30 years] ]
*Other environmental milestones
**2098 - coral cover on Great Barrier Reef drops below 10% - Dr Eric Wolanski, James Cook University [ [http://www.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/pfk/pages/item.php?news=1516 Great Barrier Reef coral cover could drop below 10% by 2098] ]


*Nanomachines in commercial use
**2019 - nanotechnology is used in 30% of commercial products - TechCast
**2020 - nanomachines in soldier armor controlled by on-board computer can change the properties of fabric from flexible to bullet-proof, treat wounds and filter out chemical and biological weapons, nanomuscle fibers can provide an exoskeleton. US Army, estimates from "The Vision 2020 Future Warrior" project, 2004
*Universal replicator is developed
**2040 - Arthur C. Clarke

Politics and economics

*World economic growth
**2016 - China's GDP exceeds that of Japan - National Intelligence Council [http://www.dni.gov/nic/NIC_globaltrend2020_s1.html Report of the National Intelligence Council's 2020 Project] ]
**2025 - one billion dollar-millionaires worldwide - James Canton, "The Extreme Future" [ [http://www.insnet.org/ins_headlines.rxml?id=5878&photo= Billion millionaires by 2025 ?] ]
**2032 - India's GDP exceeds that of Japan - National Intelligence Council
**2071 - China's GDP exceeds that of US - Goldman Sachs, [ [http://www.photius.com/rankings/gdp_2050_projection.html Top 10 GDP Countries 2000-2050] , Goldman Sachs] Price Waterhouse Coopers [ [http://www.pwc.com/extweb/pwcpublications.nsf/docid/DFB54C8AAD6742DB852571F5006DD532/$file/world2050carbon.pdf The World in 2050] , PWC]


*Self-driving cars
**2008 - General Motors, 2005 - driving in heavy traffic at 100 kph [ [http://autoblog.com/entry/1234000677056081/ GM to Launch Self-driving System] ]
**2030 - all cars travelling on major roads under control of satellite and roadside control systems - Ray Hammond
*Hybrid vehicles
**2013 - hybrid powered cars make up 30% of the new car market - TechCast


*Space tourism and private spaceflight
**2011 - space flights become available to the public - Arthur C. Clarke
**2006-2008 - space hotel under construction - plans of American motel tycoon Robert Bigelow, 2004 [ [http://www.thestatesman.net/page.news.php?clid=24&theme=&usrsess=1&id=45758 The Statesman ] ] [George Knapp, " [http://www.lasvegasmercury.com/2004/MERC-Jul-08-Thu-2004/24250261.html The ultimate public-private partnershipBigelow, NASA now working together on space hotel] ," "Las Vegas Mercury" (Thursday, July 08, 2004).]
**2013 - "space cruiser” takes a group of tourists outside of the Earth’s atmosphere - TechCast
**2024 - "many thousands of people being able to afford" visiting orbital hotels, Burt Rutan, 2004 [ [http://www.thedesertsun.com/news/stories2004/local/20041220215558.shtml] ]
*Space elevator
**2020 - Bradley C. Edwards (head of Institute for Scientific Research), 2004 [ [http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=624&u=/ap/20040625/ap_on_sc/space_elevator_3&printer=1] ]
* Return to the Moon
** 2015 - Russian plans - Energia Corporation (2006) [ [http://en.rian.ru/analysis/20061130/56276746.html Russia will develop space elevators] ]
** 2020 - NASA plans first return to the Moon and moon colony no later than 2020 (2006) [Robert Z. Pearlman, " [http://www.space.com/news/cs_060823_orion.html NASA Confirms New Moon Vehicle is Orion] " (23 August 2006).]
** 2024 - Chinese plans (2006) [ [http://www.cnn.com/2006/TECH/space/06/19/space.china.reut/index.html] Dead link|date=August 2008]
*Unmanned mission returns samples from Mars
**2020 - NASA [ [http://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/planetary/mars_future.html Mars 2007 Missions and beyond] , NASA]
*Human landing on Mars
**2020 - MIT's Aeronautics and Astronautics department, 2005 [David L Chandler, " [http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn7937&feedId=online-news_rss20 Design choices may hurry humans to Mars] " (01 September 2005).] [Zonk, " [http://science.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=05/09/09/2236252&from=rss Visiting Our Red Space Neighbor] " (Sep 09, 2005).]
**2021 - Arthur C. Clarke
**2025 - a permanent Mars colony, 4Frontiers, 2005 [ [http://www.wired.com/news/space/0,2697,68739,00.html Slideshow: The Next Mother Lode: Mars] ]
**2030 - TechCast
*Asteroid mining
**2024 - Peter Diamandis, founder of Ansari X Prize, 2004 [Mark Baard, " [http://www.wired.com/news/space/0,2697,65729,00.html?tw=wn_1techhead The Final Capitalist Frontier] " (11.17.04).]
*Near light speed travel
**2095 - Arthur C. Clarke

ee also

*Famous predictions
*Future studies
*Technology forecasting


Further reading

* Oliver, Richard W. "The Shape of Things to Come: 7 Imperatives for Winning in the New World of Business." ISBN 0070482632

External links

* http://www.techcast.org/Forecasts.aspx (a list of technological forecasts by the "G. Washington University TechCast")

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Timeline of the future — The following is a logarithmic timeline of events which should occur in the future, barring unforeseen circumstances and assuming that we can extrapolate into the future based on our science. In most cases, references have not been given, but the …   Wikipedia

  • Timeline of the United States housing bubble — The United States housing bubble is over. Housing prices peaked in early 2005, began declining in 2006 and may not yet have hit bottom.Timeline 1985–2008*1985–1991: Savings and Loan crisis **January 1989: One month drop in sales of previously… …   Wikipedia

  • The Singularity Is Near — The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology   …   Wikipedia

  • Future — Futurity redirects here. For the ship, see MV Futurity. Near future redirects here. For the song, see The Near Future. For other uses, see Future (disambiguation). The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come shows Scrooge his future in Dickens …   Wikipedia

  • The Diamond Age —   …   Wikipedia

  • Timeline of STS-121 — This is the timeline for STS 121, the mission to the ISS.AboutThe shuttle was docked to the ISS for the majority of the flight. For much of the time the shuttle was at the ISS the Multi Purpose Logistics Module Leonardo was mated and accessible… …   Wikipedia

  • Subprime crisis impact timeline — The subprime crisis impact timeline includes government laws, regulations and entities and their effect on private institutions; information and statistics about governmental and private activities and trends; and details of important incidents,… …   Wikipedia

  • Effects of the 2008–2010 automotive industry crisis on the United States — Main article: Automotive industry crisis of 2008–2010 An automobile dealership in Orland, California which closed after General Motors cut ties with it and several hundred other dealers as part of its Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructuring efforts… …   Wikipedia

  • Battle of the Coral Sea — Part of the Pacific Theater of World War II …   Wikipedia

  • Fusion power — The Sun is a natural fusion reactor. Fusion power is the power generated by nuclear fusion processes. In fusion reactions two light atomic nuclei fuse together to form a heavier nucleus (in contrast with fission power). In doing so they release a …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.