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DoCoMo Predicts the Future
Jamais Cascio, 7 Mar 05

docomo.jpgVodafone isn't the only telecom company producing snazzy visions of what tomorrow will bring. NTT-DoCoMo, the major player in the Japanese telecom world, has produced its own scenario of the future, fully enabled by ubiquitous computing and communication, of course. "Vision 2010" is set (you guessed it) in 2010, and portrays the lives of several friends. It's a video, not a flash presentation, so unlike the Vodafone scenario, there are no branching storylines.

Although set in Japan, the video is available in (dubbed) English. The voice acting and translated dialogue are all pretty cheesy -- it's hard to avoid thinking about the bad old days of Toho Studios rubber monster movies -- but if you can get past that, the world presented is not at all implausible. It's a bit less "clean" than the Vodafone version, but not terribly different otherwise. It's actually somewhat interesting to see how close the two telecom visions are: does the similarity arise from (perceived) inevitability, from the nature of the telecom industry, or from an inability to really get imaginative?

After you compare the DoCoMo future with the one from Vodafone, check out the Apple Knowledge Navigator (Quicktime) from 1988. What has changed? What do they get right? What did they miss entirely?

(Via Unmediated)

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Also good to compare to Sun's "Starfire" project from 1992 (whose future was supposed to happen last year. ..woops, little ways to go yet.)

A good description with pix is at:
but if you saw Minority Report, the interface was similar (though much less pizazz, much more practical.)

Posted by: Jer on 8 Mar 05



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