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There’s a new book out called “The Way We Will Be 50 Years from Today” edited by Mike Wallace. It has essays by sixty of the world’s top minds (why was I not invited?) on what they think the world will be like in the year 2058.

I have a problem with books like these because they don’t seem to be right. We should all remember how predictions from the past

ended up by the year 2000. No flying cars, no moon bases, no “kitchen of the future” with dinner tables that washed dishes for you. The only predictions that seem correct are the ones that are vague, like “computers will be really powerful” and “we’ll have a presence in space.”

In most cases, these predictions seem more like what the author would like to see happen rather than what will probably happen.

I can come up with hundreds of predictions for fifty years from now.

Most of them are mutually-exclusive. I’ve already written about a few of them, but you’d probably have to search around a bit to find them.

Let’s have some fun.

1) New World Order

By the year 2058 the global economy collapsed. The world became re-united under a central leader, a global president. Each country, in turn, is ruled by a local “governor.” Problems arise when these governors can’t get along any better than they did when they were absolute rulers of their country. The global president is completely ineffective at keeping peace. For the world’s citizens, nothing much has changed other than having a central head figure for aliens from outer space to contact.

2) Citizen Tracking

In the coming years, the citizens of the United States will complete their castration of the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights. They will give up their rights of privacy in the interest of convenience. The government will sell them on various programs, such as a National ID card, because it will make their lives easier by having a card that carries their bank information, medical history, voter status, drivers license, and other such things that can be used anywhere. The fact that it tracks everything they do is a minor side-effect. People will gobble it up. RFID implants will be used to keep children safe from kidnappers, hikers safe from getting lost, and your senile grandma from ending up in the wrong house. All tasty foods will be outlawed, due to being unhealthy, and replaced by a nutritious paste sanctioned by the government. Paper and coin money will be phased out so all transactions can be monitored to prevent terrorism. Don’t even think of smoking a cigarette. Alcohol will be permitted so everyone will be happy.

3) Civil War

The events in #2 transpire which creates a rebellious faction. Civil war erupts. While the government won’t use nuclear weapons within the country, it will use other forms of bombardment and land engagements. Chaos ensues, turning the U.S.A into a veritable wasteland. The coastal areas will remain within control of the

government in case other countries decide to use the opportunity to stage an attack on the weakened country, but the interior will be a lot more chaotic and dangerous.

4) The Star Trek Holodeck will be created

Creating a real-world Holodeck will be one of the major changes in human kind history. If you don’t know what a Holodeck is, you’ll have to read about it because it’s too much for me to cover right now. But if everyone had a large closet space that could be turned (for all intents and purposes) into an unlimited amount of space with anything a person desired within then it would be pretty damn neat. Since the US only has information type jobs, all work can be done in a networked holodeck environment. You could phase out janitors and stuff. You could do just about anything you wanted to do without leaving your home. I wrote a whole big thing about it, but you’ll have to search for it. It was last year, sometime.

5) The Creation Of Nanobots

The Feynman/Drexler vision of nano technology will change the entire world in so many ways it would be hard to count. People could live forever, cars and other items could be self-repairing, food would be plentiful and made from garbage, similar to the way the food replicator works in Star Trek. Artists would become the highest caste in our society because the only thing separating what you could have versus what your neighbor could have would be the styling.

Okay, that’s five. I’m sure I could think of more, but I’m still tired and I’m still not feeling well. If I had some nano bots running through my system wiping out cold virus’ I’d be gold.