We all have some crazy ideas of what the future may hold and I'm sure most of you (including myself) thought we'd have robot maids or at least that conveyor belt thing George Jetson used to get ready in the morning by now. It turns out people called "Futurologists" make a whole career out of attempting to predict the future and lets just say they got 2020 pretty wrong.
The robot revolution was delayed - "Futurists and technology experts say robots and artificial intelligence of various sorts will become an accepted part of daily life by the year 2020 and will almost completely take over physical work," Elon University noted in 2006.
We still like food, but our tastes are changing - Prominent futurist Ray Kurzweil has regularly predicted that food consumption would be on the way out by 2020. "Billions of tiny nanobots in the digestive tract and bloodstream could intelligently extract the precise nutrients we require," he wrote in his 2004 book "Fantastic Voyage: Live Long Enough to Live Forever." Kurzweil projected that these nutrient-laden bots could "send the rest of the food we eat on its way to elimination."
We're not vacationing on the Moon -- yet - "By 2020 you'll have seen private citizens circumnavigate the moon," Eric Anderson of Space Adventures told the website Space.com in 2009. Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk went further. "I'm going to go out on a limb and say that by 2020 there will be serious plans to go to Mars with people," the same site quoted him as saying.
But the further back in time you go, the more outlandish the predictions get.
In 1964 a survey was sent out to 82 experts in various fields asking for their predictions for the future.
Had they been right, we'd be communicating with extraterrestrials and time-traveling by now. Our lives would be extended by half a century, and Mars would be old news. We'd have landed there by the mid-1980s, and Venus and the moons of Jupiter would have been conquered in the early 21st century. We'd even have flown to Pluto -- which, back then, was still a planet before it was downgraded in 2006. "Primitive forms of artificial life will have been generated in the laboratory," the report goes on. "A universal language will have been evolved ... (and) on the moon, mining and manufacture of propellent materials will be in progress." One of the most eyebrow-raising claims in the RAND report, however, was that by 2020 we'd have bred animals, including apes, to carry out daily chores in the home.
Not gonna lie, I'd much rather live in a Jetsons robot world than a freaky live-in Planet of the Apes one but that's just me...