- “… after a few more flashes in the pan, we shall hear very little more of Edison or his electric lamp. Every claim he makes has been tested and proved impracticable.”
– New York Times, 16th January 1880
- “Professor Goddard … does not know the relation of action to reaction … he only seems to lack the knowledge ladled out daily in our high schools”
– New York Times, 13th January 1920
- “Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible
– Lord Kelvin, British physicist, 1895.
- “There is no likelihood that man can ever tap the power of the atom”
– Robert Millikan, Nobel Prize physicist, 1923.
- “There is no hope for the fanciful idea of reaching the moon because of insurmountable barriers to escaping the earth’s gravity”
– Dr. F. R. Moulton, University of Chicago astronomer, 1932.
- “I don’t like it, and I’m sorry I ever had anything to do with it.”
– Erwin Schrodinger talking about Quantum Mechanics.
- “As far as the Laws of Mathematics refer to Reality, they are not certain, and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to Reality”
– Albert Einstein (1879-1955).
- “Only two things are certain: the Universe and human stupidity; and I’m not certain about the Universe”
– Albert Einstein (1879-1955).
- “Relativity seemed to impress him, however at this point I no longer understood my theory”
– Albert Einstein, upon reading a 1907 paper of Minkowski’s transformation of his Special Relativity theory into mathematical terms relating to the four dimensions X, Y, Z, and T (Minkowski was Einstein’s former mathematics teacher).
- “Radio has no future.”
– Lord Kelvin, Scottish physicist, 1897.
- “I think there is a world market for maybe five computers.”
– Thomas Watson, chairman of IBM, 1943.
- “Everything that can be invented has been invented.”
– Charles Duell, U.S. Commissioner of Patents, 1899.
- “Man will not fly for 50 years.”
– Orville Wright, aviation pioneer, 1901.
- “What use could this company make of an electrical toy [telephone]?”
– William Orton, President of Western Union.
- “The horse is here to stay the automobile is only a fad.”
– Advice given by the President of Michigan Savings Bank to Horace Rackham, lawyer of Henry Ford.
- “Airplanes are interesting toys but of no military value.”
– Marshal Ferdinand Foch, French military strategist, 1911.
- “Nobody now fears that a Japanese fleet could deal an unexpected blow on our Pacific possessions. Radio makes surprise impossible.”
– Josephus Daniels, U.S. Secretary of the Navy, 1922.
- “I have traveled the length and breadth of this country and talked with the best people, and I can assure you that data processing is a fad that won’t last out the year.”
– The editor in charge of business books for Prentice Hall, 1957.
- “Germany is unable to wage war.”
– David Lloyd George, British Prime Minister, 1934.
- “But what… is it good for?”
– Engineer at the Advanced Computing Systems Division of IBM, 1968, commenting on the microchip.
- “[Concerning television], people will soon get tired of staring at a plywood box every night.”
– Darryl F. Zanuck, 20th Century Fox, 1946 (JG).
- “Computers in the future may perhaps only weigh 1.5 tons.”
– Popular Mechanics, 1949.
- “[Man will never reach the Moon] regardless of all future scientific advances.”
– Dr. Lee de Forest, a father of radio, 1967.
- “There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in their home.”
– Kenneth Olsen, President and Founder of Digital Equipment Corp., 1977.
- “The dream of some Zionists for the restoration of Hebrew as a living language has as little chance of success as the dream of the restoration of a Jewish state in Palestine.”
– Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1905.
- “640K ought to be enough for anybody”
– Popularly attributed to Bill Gates, 1981