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Nikola Tesla Predicted Cell Phones in 1909

Posted May 4, 2010, 9:47 a.m.

This is so cool. Nikola Tesla, the noted and influential inventor who contributed so much to early research and development of electricity, predicted cell phones . . . in 1909. It may have taken almost a century for his vision to come true, but it did.

Long before others were making similar predictions, Tesla said:

“It will soon be possible, for instance, for a business man in New York to dictate instructions and have them appear in type in London or elsewhere. He will be able to call from his desk and talk with any telephone subscriber in the world. It will only be necessary to carry an inexpensive instrument no bigger than a watch, which will enable its bearer to hear anywhere on sea or land for distances of thousands of miles.”

You can view the whole 1909 New York Times article over at Recombu.

Predicting the future is very dangerous work—you are much more likely to be wrong than to be right—but when somebody really hits the nail on the head, especially so far ahead of time, it’s always a little spooky.

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Scott Bradford has been building web sites and using them to say what he thinks since 1995, which tended to get him in trouble with power-tripping assistant principals at the time. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration from George Mason University, but has spent most of his career (so far) working on public- and private-sector web sites. He is not a member of any political party, and brands himself an ‘independent constitutional conservative.’ In addition to holding down a day job and blogging about challenging subjects like politics, religion, and technology, Scott is also a devout Catholic, gun-owner, bike rider, and music lover with a wife, two cats, and a dog.