The epic history of technology is littered with some incredibly lousy prophecies, often made by some very smart, very successful -- and very wealthy -- executives. We trolled the timeline of technology to find the most misguided -- and in some cases just plain crazy --calls in the industry's storied past, from the telephone to television to YouTube. Sure, it's easy to call out the most foolish forecasts with the benefit of perfect hindsight. It's also a lot of fun -- there are some doozies. And
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"There is practically no chance communications space satellites will be used to provide better telephone, telegraph, television, or radio service inside the United States." --T. Craven, FCC Commissioner (said in 1961)
Among the companies that would later disagree: DirecTV, DISH Network, Sirius Satellite Radio, and XM Satellite Radio. The FCC is the federal regulatory honcho for radio, television, wire, satellite, and cable communications, though its Web site does say its "jurisdiction covers the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. possessions." Technically, space wasn't part of Craven's charter.
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