Future Tech stories

Remember 1997? That's the year when the Star Wars special editions began our long national breakup with George Lucas; the world was first introduced to the musical stylings of Limp Bizkit; and AOL unleashed an unyielding torrent of CDs on the world, promising ever-increasing amounts of free hours on the "world wide web." Crazy times. Now think back: what would 1997-You's reaction be if someone told them that in 10 years, they would be able to access a robust, video-laden internet via a buttonless, mouseless device the size of a calculator (oh, and it had a camera and you could make phone calls with it)? You would have thought this soothsayer got a little too much O2 at their neighborhood oxygen bar before watching an episode of seaQuest on VHS, amiright? However, looking back, there were many surprisingly accurate predictions of today's sci-fitastic tech (along with some notable misfires). Here we collected forecasts from top tech thinkers about how our electronic lives will evolve over the decade to come. We're sure there will be a mix of bullseyes and bulls%!t, so be sure to check back in every few years to see how we're doing.
About this time every year, reporters (and, of course, our readers) have to suffer through a slew of April Fool's jokes from tech companies, inevitably promising amazing things and then ending with "ha ha just kidding sucks for you!" And it does suck for us, because we get really, really excited about tech that seems too good to be true, and it's always a bummer when it's not. We get all mopey, seriously. Ray buys himself a new cellphone. Kevin feeds himself a milkshake intravenously. And I — well — I just turn all the lights off, lock myself in a closet, and weep. This year, however, we noticed that a bunch of those "ha ha just kidding" moments really weren't, in that some or all of the tech behind the impossible gadgets actually does exist, more or less. So, to make ourselves feel better, we're going to take a look at five of this year's April Fool's tech pranks that could almost, almost be real.