Predictions gone wrong!

The collection of quotes I present below illustrate how managers, scientists and academics often fail to free themselves from paradigms. As Peter Ustinov said “If the world should blow itself up, the last audible voice would be that of an expert saying it can’t be done”.
The list was too big therefore I decided to break it up in 2 parts. Have fun.

“I have traveled the length and breadth of this country and talked with the best people, and I can assure you that data processing is a fad that won’t last out the year.”
The editor in charge of business books for Prentice Hall, 1957

“I think there’s a world market for about 5 computers.”
Thomas J. Watson, Chairman of the Board, IBM (around 1948)

“The ‘telephone’ has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered a means of communication.”
Western Union Internal Memo, 1876

“Who the hell wants to hear actors talk ?”
Harry M. Warner, Warner Bros, 1927

“There is no reason for any individuals to have a computer in their home.”
Ken Olsen, President, Chairman and Founder of DEC, 1977

“Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible.”
Lord Kelvin, President, Royal Society 1895

“640K ought to be enough for anybody”
Bill Gates, 1981 (Bill Gates did deny the statement)

“That is the biggest fool thing we have ever done. The bomb will never go off, and I speak as an expert in explosives.”
Admiral William Leahy. (Advice to President Truman, when asked his opinion of the atomic bomb project.)

“We don’t like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out.”
Decca Recording Co. rejecting the Beatles in 1962

“The problem with television is that the people must sit and keep their eyes glued on a screen; the average American family hasn’t time for it.”
The New York Times, after a prototype demonstration at the 1939 World’s Fair.

“With over 50 foreign cars already on sale here, the Japanese auto industry isn’t likely to carve out a big slice of the US market.”
Business Week, August 2, 1968

“Everything that can be invented has been invented.”
Charles H. Duell, Commissioner, U.S. Office of Patents, 1899

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