He put a man on the Moon in the Victorian Era. He criticized the Internet…in 1863. Jules Verne is the ultimate futurist, with an uncanny ability to observe the world around him and tell us precisely where our trends and technology will take us next.
When Neil Armstrong set foot on the Moon in 1969, he credited Jules Verne with inspiring the mission over a century earlier. In From the Earth to the Moon, Jules Verne not only prophesized that man would walk on the lunar surface, he outlined exactly how to do it…from a Florida launch pad to a Pacific Ocean splash down.
In 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and The Mysterious Island, Jules Verne presents Captain Nemo — an enigmatic science renegade who perfects the Holy Grail of energy — with a clean power source that converts water into fuel. The concept has long been considered the greatest of Verne's unfulfilled prophecies. That is, until now. Today, Hydrogen Fuel Cell technology is poised to one day replace fossil fuel as a means of producing clean, renewable energy.
Some sci-fi writers predict future inventions. Jules Verne prophesizes entire future eras. 1879's The Begum's Fortune darkly portends the horrors of the coming World Wars: weapons of mass destruction, chemical warfare, and the rise of a charismatic German madman bent on world domination. Verne's Paris in the 20th Century, written in 1863, nails the details of modern life: skyscrapers, television, Maglev trains, computers, and a culture preoccupied with the Internet.
From the center of the Earth to the surface of the Moon, the extraordinary sci-fi voyages of Jules Verne continue to inspire art, industry, culture, and technology with an enduring question: Where can science take us?
Philip K Dick
Philip K Dick - A Day in the Afterlife [1994 Documentary]
Philip K Dick: 1981 Interview - Philosophy and Theology
In this rare audio, Greg Rickman Interviews Philip K Dick about his studies and thoughts on philosophy and theology and about Dick's works. Some topics include simulated reality, causality's non-existence, the illuminati as god and as benign conspiracy theory, friendship with Robert Anton Wilson, Rosicrucianism and Parmenides, Jung and psychological projection, Dick's exegesis, the dream state and the unconscious, Spinoza, Schopenhauer, entropy and the will to survive, Greek myth and the god Pan, the works Ubik, Valis, Maze of Death, and a lot more.
Prophets of Science Fiction - Episode 2 - Philip K Dick
Prophets of Science Fiction hosted by Ridley Scott posits the science-fiction imaginings of the writers of the past are now becoming the science realities of our day. In this episode, Philip K Dick, whose many works have influenced or become major motion pictures, questions reality with Do Androids Dream Electronic Sheep (Blade Runner), Minority Report, We Can Remember It For You Wholesale (Total Recall), A Scanner Darkly, Adjustment Team (Adjust Bureau) and many others.
Isaac Asimov’s 1964 Predictions About 2014 Are Frighteningly Accurate
In 1964, famed science fiction writer Isaac Asimov ventured a guess at what you might find if you set foot inside the 2014 World’s Fair. Using his gift for envisioning future technology, Asimov’s predictions from 50 years out are both stunningly accurate and perhaps a little bit depressing. Here’s a look at what he got right.
“One thought that occurs to me is that men will continue to withdraw from nature in order to create an environment that will suit them better.”
“Kitchen units will be devised that will prepare “automeals,” heating water and converting it to coffee”
“Complete lunches and dinners, with the food semiprepared, will be stored in the freezer until ready for processing.”
“The appliances of 2014 will have no electric cords, of course”
“Much effort will be put into the designing of vehicles with “Robot-brains”
“Vehicles that can be set for particular destinations and that will then proceed there without interference by the slow reflexes of a human driver.”
“There will be increasing emphasis on transportation that makes the least possible contact with the surface”
“By 2014, only unmanned ships will have landed on Mars, though a manned expedition will be in the works and in the 2014 Futurama will show a model of an elaborate Martian colony”
“For short-range travel, moving sidewalks (with benches on either side, standing room in the center) will be making their appearance in downtown sections.”
“In 2014, there is every likelihood that the world population will be 6,500,000,000 and the population of the United States will be 350,000,000”
“Synchronous satellites, hovering in space will make it possible for you to direct-dial any spot on earth”
“Communications will become sight-sound and you will see as well as hear the person you telephone.”
“In fact, one popular exhibit at the 2014 World’s Fair will be such a 3-D TV, built life-size, in which ballet performances will be seen.
“Part of the General Electric exhibit today consists of a school of the future in which such present realities as closed-circuit TV and programmed tapes aid the teaching process.”
JOE BURBANK/ORLANDO SENTINEL / Via media.trb.com
“Robots will neither be common nor very good in 2014, but they will be in existence.”
“The world of A.D. 2014 will have few routine jobs that cannot be done better by some machine than by any human being. Mankind will therefore have become largely a race of machine tenders.”
“Even so, mankind will suffer badly from the disease of boredom”
“The lucky few who can be involved in creative work of any sort will be the true elite of mankind, for they alone will do more than serve a machine.”
“Indeed, the most somber speculation I can make about A.D. 2014 is that in a society of enforced leisure, the most glorious single word in the vocabulary will have become work!”
It’s worth noting that, while quite impressive, Asimov didn’t get everything right. 2014 will most surely come and go without “jets of compressed air [that] will lift land vehicles off the highways.” He also predicted that the entire east coast from Boston to Washington would merge into one large mega city, which seems unlikely at this point in time. But perhaps the most telling (and disheartening) is Asimov’s inaccurate notion that we’d even have a World’s Fair in 2014. But still, pretty good!
Prophets of Science Fiction - Episode 5 - Isaac Asimov
Prophets of Science Fiction hosted by Ridley Scott posits the science-fiction imaginings of the writers of the past are now becoming the science realities of our day. In this episode, Isaac Asimov, one of, if not, the most prolific cross-discipline authors ever, recognizes that science fiction requires a technological leap, differentiates science fantasy as the physically impossible regardless the technology, creates the Three Laws of Robotics, introduces trans-humanism, and raises the question 'What makes us human?'.