One day last year, I was at a small gathering of colleagues and acquaintances. Someone who had apparently wandered in as a guest of someone else came up to me and said, “You’re a science fiction writer, huh?”
“Yes, I am,” I admitted.
“Okay. So predict something.”
I said, “I’m not in the business of predicting. I’m in the business of storytelling.”
I won’t repeat the whole ensuing conversation here, but the fellow was quite upset with me for refusing to tell him what year he would finally have a jetpack, a flying car and a steak dinner in a pill. I did tell him that he could have a wall-sized 3D TV in his home right now, but he wasn’t interested in that. It wasn’t science-fictiony enough.
Nevertheless, from time to time, I do engage in a bit of speculation and extrapolation, because the trend lines are so obvious. And here are the obvious trend lines: