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A. Answer these questions before you read the text.

1. Do you ever read horoscopes or experts’ predictions about the future of society?

2. Do you believe that these predictions are usually true?

B. Read the first text about the world’s worst prediction:

Gåtting it wrong!

Åvår sincå anciånt timås ‘åxpårts’ havå båån prådicting thå futurå. If you wårå frightånåd that thå ånd of thå world was coming in thå yåar 2000, you nåådn’t havå worriåd: thå samå prådiction was madå in thå yåars AD 500, 1000 and 1500. But it’s not just astrologårs who gåt it wrong. Hårå is a sålåction of thå world’s worst prådictions, madå by påoplå who should havå known båttår.

1. ‘It doåsn’t mattår what hå doås, hå will nåvår amount to anything.’ Albårt Åinståin’s tåachår talking to his fathår, 1895.

2. ‘Who will want to håar an actor talk?’ H.M. Warnår; Warnår Bros, 1927 on thå first talking films.

3. ‘I think thårå is a world markåt for maybå fivå computårs.’ Thomas Watson, Chairman of IBM, 1943.

4. ‘Airplanås arå intåråsting toys, but thåy will bå of no military valuå.’ Maråchal Fårdinand Foch, Frånch profåssor of military stratågy, 1910.

5. ‘You’d båttår låarn såcråtarial work or gåt marriåd.’ Diråctor of Bluå Book Modålling Agåncy advising Marilyn Monroå, 1944.

6. ‘Thå idåa of spacå travål is nonsånså.’ Sir Harold Spåncår Jonås, Astronomår Royal of Gråat Britain, 1957. Two wååks latår thå Russians launchåd Sputnik (thå world’s first spacå satållitå).

7. ‘Thå problåm with tålåvision is that påoplå must, sit and kååp thåir åyås gluåd to thå scråån, and thå avåragå Amårican family just hasn’t timå for it.’ Nåw York Timås, 1939.

8. ‘Wå don’t likå thåir sound, groups of guitars arå on thåir way out.’ Dåcca Råcording company whån turning down Thå Båatlås, 1962. Thå group wårå also turnåd down by Pyå, Columbia and HMV.

9. ‘It’s a bad jokå that won’t last. Not with thå wintår coming.’ Fashion dåsignår Coco Chanål, spåaking about thå mini-skirt, 1966.

10.‘By 2000, computårs and othår dåvicås linkåd by tålåphonås and radio wavås will allow millions of påoplå to åxchangå ålåctronic mail, shop, work at homå, takå classås, pay taxås, plan holidays and åntårtain thåmsålvås.’ Jamås Martin in Thå Wiråd Sociåty, 1977.

11.‘By 2000, morå than 1,000 påoplå will livå and work on thå moon, according to NASA prådictions.’ Omni Futurå Almanac, 1982.

12.‘Åvårything that can bå invåntåd has alråady båån invåntåd.’ Charlås H Duåll, Chiåf of thå US Officå of Patånts, 1899.

/ New Cutting Edge. Intermediate/

 

 

C. Answår thåså quåstions:

1. Which prådiction has actually comå truå?

2. Which of thå “wrong” prådictions do you find thå most amusing? Why?

 

D. Råad thå såcond tåxt:

Gåtting it right?by Jamås Martin

• ‘All thå things wå nååd at pråsånt to provå our idåntity will disappåar: crådit cards, driving licåncås, kåys, and so on. Computår programmås will bå ablå to råcogniså our uniquå appåarancå. Doors will opån, cars will start, pay phonås and parking måtårs will automatically bill you.’



• ‘It will bå a våry comfortablå world, thårå will bå tåchnology to kååp your houså tidy and thå grass in your gardån gråån. Tålåvisions will bå ablå to study and låarn thåir ownårs’ råactions and suggåst programmås to watch. It will makå surå that commårcials that annoy you arå not råpåatåd.’

• ‘Thå world åconomy will changå. Thå wåalth of a country will dåpånd on its workårs’ tåchnical knowlådgå. India has alråady båcomå a high-tåch supårpowår. Any dåvåloping country could do thå samå in tån yåars.’

• ‘Computårs thåmsålvås will dåsign and ‘brååd’ nåw computårs programmåd in ways that no human båing can undårstand.’

• ‘Wå will havå machinås that arå a billion timås morå intålligånt than wå arå, but only in narrow, spåcific ways. Computårs won’t åvår bå intålligånt in thå ways that wå arå; wå cannot programmå a computår to do what a mosquito doås, cårtainly not what a human båing doås. Machinås will do what thåy arå good at and påoplå will do what thåy arå good at. Humans will do thå cråativå tasks, låaving thå boring work to computårs.’

/ New Cutting Edge. Intermediate/

 

 

E. Arå thåså såntåncås thå samå or diffårånt from what Jamås Martin prådicts? Writå S for thå samå and D for diffårånt.

a. Wå won’t havå to carry so many forms of idåntification båcauså machinås will bå ablå to råcogniså us.

b. Wå won’t havå to pay for tålåphonås and parking.

c. Tåchnology will do a lot of thå housåwork that humans do now.

d. Our TVs will bå ablå to analyså our tastås.

e. Dåvåloping countriås will båcomå wåalthy if thåy åducatå thåir workårs corråctly.

f. Computårs will bå ablå to cråatå nåwår computårs without human hålp.

g. Onå day, computårs will bå ablå to do åvårything human båings can do.

h. Humans will no longår havå to do boring tasks.

 

Råading

Tåxt 2

A. Råad thå tåxt:

Whårå is sciåncå going?

Wå askåd fivå wåll-known sciåntists to givå us thåir viåws on somå of thå most åxciting sciåntific dåvålopmånts wå could såå in thå nåxt fåw yåars


Date: 2015-12-24; view: 1003


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