Social Foretelling.

IV. – Development of Wireless Telegraphy. Scene in Hyde Park. [These two figures are not communicating with one another. The lady is receiving an amatory message, and the gentleman some racing results.]

This is from Punch magazine, in 1906. They didn’t quite get to cellphones, but they weren’t completely off the mark, either. The Punch Almanack, in 1879, also speculated on the possibility of a telephonoscope:

(Every evening, before going to bed, Pater and Materfamilias set up an electric camera obscura over their bedroom mantel-piece, and gladden their eyes with the sight of their Children at the Antipodes, and converse gaily with them through the wire.)
Paterfamilias (in Willow Place): “Beatrice, come closer, I want to whisper.”
Beatrice (from Ceylon): “Yes, Papa dear.”
Paterfamilias: Who is that charming young lady playing on Charlie’s side!
Beatrix: “She’s just come over from England, Papa. I’ll introduce you as soon as the game’s over!”

A version of Skype was foretold, too, by a number of people. You can see more here.


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