Futurology: The tricky art of knowing what will happen next
A 1972 book which predicts what life would be like in 2010 has been reprinted after attracting a cult following, but how hard is it to tell the future?
Geoffrey Hoyle is often asked why he predicted everybody would be wearing jumpsuits by 2010. He envisioned a world where everybody worked a three-day week and had their electric cars delivered in tubes of liquid.
These colourful ideas from his 1972 children's book, 2010: Living in the Future, helped prompt a Facebook campaign to track him down. His work has now been reprinted with the year in the title amended to 2011.
"I've been criticised because I said people [would] wear jumpsuits," explains Hoyle, the son of noted astronomer and science fiction author Fred Hoyle. "We don't wear jumpsuits but to a certain extent the idea of the jumpsuit is the restriction of liberties."
Hoyle's book is a product of its time. The move towards a planned society with an emphasis on communal living colour it.
"Most of it is based on the evolution of a political system," Hoyle notes.
The author also predicted widespread use of "vision phones" and doing your grocery shopping online.