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Scientist Claimed the Internet Would Be a Fad

In 1995, an American scientist named Clifford Stoll boldly predicted that the Internet would be just another passing fad. He wrote an article for Newsweek titled "The Internet? Bah!" Here's what Stoll said in an interview with Minnesota Public Radio:

I expect the value of the Internet for communications in general isn't very high. I don't think it will ever replace face to face meetings and real rallies—things that get commitment and involvement from people. Rather, it induces a very shallow … involvement and as such, I think it's grossly over-promoted and there's a great deal of hyperbole surrounding it.
I think it's grossly oversold and within two or three years people will shrug and say, '"Uh yep, it was a fad of the early 90's and now, oh yeah, it still exists but hey, I've got a life to lead and work to do. I don't have time to waste online." Or, "I'll collect my email, I'll read it, why should I bother prowling around the Worldwide Web …" simply because there's so little of value there.

Ten years later, in a 2006 TED talk, Stoll reflected on his failed predictions and said, "If you really want to know about the future, don't ask a technologist, a scientist, a physicist. No! Don't ask somebody who's writing code. No, if you want to know what society's going to be like in 20 years, ask a kindergarten teacher."

Possible Preaching Angles: Use this story to talk about the following subjects: (1) Change—our resistance to change; (2) God's Faithfulness—the faithfulness of God (what he says will happen) vs. our inability to predict the future; (3) Self-reliance—the foolishness of relying on our own wisdom.

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