One time literally from every gap inFuturologists crawled out to the media with their predictions. Futurologists are people who predict the future, talk about how we will live in many years and what humanity is striving for. Why do we need such forecasts, few can say. Someone in general doubts the correctness of their actions. In this article I will talk about why I do not believe such “experts” and why I consider their work, if not quackery, then at least a very dubious occupation.
- 1 Who is a futurologist?
- 2 Futurologists deceive us
- 3 Can the future be predicted?
- 4 Forecasts of futurologists do not come true
- 5 Futurologists think too narrowly
- 6 How to check the forecast of a futurologist?
Who is a futurologist?
Futurology as a science isforecasting the future, including by extrapolating existing technological, economic or social trends or predicting future trends.
It’s not difficult to guess those who are involved in thisscience, they are futurologists, and it is their task to predict what will happen in the future. We can say that the futurologist is a fashionable modern name for the one who was previously called the prophet. But only the real prophets who had the gift (or intuition) at least did something, and the futurologists have a percentage of matches equal to the percentage of finger hits in the sky.
Since the future has always worried people exceptthe prophets were engaged in predictions by philosophers and some religious figures. Someone simply said what would happen next, someone performed strange rituals, but then they unconditionally believed, since there was no other option. One of the most famous futurologists of the past can be considered Nostradamus. Only then he was called a fortuneteller.
Hand on heart, we can say thatfuturologists have a slightly more scientific approach than predictors of the past. The first attempts at scientific forecasts refer to the end of the 19th century. Among the most striking works can be noted “Germany in 2000” (1891) by Georg Ehrmann, “The Future War and Its Economic Consequences” (1897) by Ivan Stanislavovich Bliokh, “Anticipations” (1901) by Herbert Wells and many others.
The term "futurology" was first proposed by a sociologistOsip Flechtheim in 1943. In the USSR, it was customary to distinguish between “bourgeois” futurology and “scientific” (Marxist) forecasting. As we see at the beginning of the path there was no unity of approaches. There is none now.
Here are some more predictions: the UN has published a forecast of the world's population by 2100
Forecasts of futurologists are based onstatistics, predictive development of industries and fields of activity, as well as personal feelings of the “scientist”. The influence of each of these factors on the final forecast depends on each specific futurologist. Only he decides what to put more emphasis on when making a decision. It is the lack of common standards that makes the work of modern predictors too abstract and subjective.
In addition to these factors, the forecast alsopolls of specialists in different industries and the search for analogies of the development of the situation in the past can influence. But we all know that the coils of history, although similar, each time occur on a completely different level.
Futurologists deceive us
In the old days, when people believed in everything,popular unrest could always be used for the benefit of someone, so the prophets and foretellers gave predictions that were beneficial to them or to those who asked them to.
Now there is almost no such thing, since we all knowthe essence of the phenomena and we won’t believe anyone who says that a meteorite will fall on Moscow. In order for such a person to be believed, he will need to bring substantially more evidence than before.
Another question that futurologists often giveforecasts regarding the period of time that will be in 100-200 or more years. And now we will answer the following question ... Someone seriously hopes to check whether what some futurologist promised 200 years ago will come true to us?
This is the meaning of such distant predictions. We will believe what they tell us, and whether it will be so in reality, is no longer important. The forecaster got his attention, money and influence now. Nobody will even remember forecasts for 40-50 years. That is why the price of the forecast that the futurologist that the drunk “balabologist” will be about the same.
As a result, futurologists simply compete in theirforecasts. In the best case, even if he does not set out to profit from it, he simply becomes a dreamer who discusses his theories with other such dreamers. That's all…
Can the future be predicted?
It is impossible to predict the future. This can only be those who are responsible for its creation. For some, they are scientists, for others, the higher forces in which they believe. The one who deals with forecasts can only analyze and identify probabilities.
But often, all these forecasts come down tothat events will develop as they developed before. For example, one of the predictions of the end of the world, which I wrote about in one of the previous articles, boils down to the fact that the temperature rises by 0.5 degrees every 10 years. These clever men just figured out the temperature at which the glaciers would melt, divided it by the indicated increase in temperature, and got more than two thousand years through which we all would be bad.
As usual, none of us will verify this. And most importantly, in this specific forecast they completely do not take into account deviations. Temperature cannot always rise evenly. For such a long time, we can leave the planet. The ice age may begin or something else may happen. The main thing is that the forecast flew into space and they began to discuss it. And here's how to believe such an absurdity, if you analyze it yourself?
Forecasts of futurologists do not come true
There are futurologists who make forecasts for the near future. For example, for 15-20 years. It is difficult to call them really futurologists, but here it is already becoming more interesting.
If you are so smart, why are you so poor? - Warren Buffett
Have you ever seen the story of a hugecapital, which began with a forecast for the future? Personally, I do not. I am sure that most of you will answer negatively too. There are people who work hard and have a flair. There are those who are lucky. There are even those who knew that, for example, Apple with Steve Jobs will take off, but nothing more. Most importantly, these are not the people who fantasize about the future in their cramped offices.
Is this evidence that they should not be believed? In my opinion, the given example speaks about this very eloquently.
Futurologists think too narrowly
Often, those who proudly call themselves a futurologist,think too narrowly. Have you noticed? I mean those cases when they say that we will conquer space, fly to other galaxies or defeat all diseases.
There is no need for a great predictor gift. Everyone is clear that this will happen. One would like to say: "Predict something not as a development of an existing one, but as the beginning of a completely new current that will definitely be."
Firefighters arrived, said that the fire, and left
When Jules Verne wrote about a trip to the moon,it really was new. If he wrote about ships that sail three times faster than modern ones at that time, or about more powerful horses, it would be like a chatter of modern connoisseurs of the future. It turns out that the science fiction was more useful than professional futurologists.
A simple example. In the middle of the last century, futurologists in the wake of the craze for space and success in it, promised us widespread space tourism. He is not there. But, they did not predict computers and many other ordinary things in our time.
How to check the forecast of a futurologist?
I think I gave four reasons thatvery well explain why I do not believe futurists. You may not agree with me, but if you have your reasons, indicate them in the comments or in our Telegram chat.
If you set a goal, of course, you can checkthe words of futurologists and understand whether they should be believed. That's just nobody needs it. I don’t think that someone will want to record all the predictions, so that later, after 40 years, get them out and start bombing them with revelations. Even if this someone personally asks a question to the author of the forecast, he will simply answer that he was mistaken, but then it will not matter anymore.
Therefore, do not take seriouslypredictions of “specialists” from futurology. Just let's listen to them, smile, dream and forget. Treat it like science fiction. How else can one relate to forecasts, half of which predict complete extinction, and the second an absolute utopia and unconditional happiness for everyone?
Prediction is the work of prophets, clairvoyants and futurologists, but not writers. Writer's business is to lie - Ursula Le Guin, introduction to the "Left hand of darkness"
The difference between science fiction writers and futurologists is that the former simply invent and dream, while the latter try to substantiate their forecasts, which are often too fantastic, and thereby raise their significance.
Even if he gives the most perfectly calibrateda forecast in which everything is just perfect, something can always happen. Because of the rash actions of one air defense officer, the Third World War began and that’s all, the forecast for ... Well, you understand. And the farther the forecasted future, the more such potential interventions. Just like in the movie “Butterfly Effect”.