Oh how we laughed
Discovery consists of seeing what everybody has seen and thinking what nobody has thought.
- Albert Szent-Gyorgyi van Nagyrapolt, The Scientist Speculates, 1962
Rail travel at high speeds is not possible because passengers, unable to breathe, would die of asphyxia.
- Dionysus Lardner, author of the The Steam Engine Explained
On the steamboat: What, sir, would you make a ship sail against the wind and currents by lighting a bonfire under her deck? I pray you, excuse me, I have not the time to listen to such nonsense.
Just as certain as death, George Westinghouse will kill a customer within six months after he puts in an electric system of any size.
- Thomas Edison
The phonograph has no commercial value at all.
- Thomas Edison
This telephone has too many shortcomings to be considered as a means of communication. The device is of inherently no value to us.
- William Orton, president of Western Union, 1876
Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible.
Lord Kelvin, present of Great Britain's Royal Society, 1895
My fingers coincide in fixing 1950 as the year when the world must go smash. The world is coming to an end in 1950.
- Henry Adams, 1903
The horse is here to stay, the automobile is a novelty.
- The president of Michigan Savings Banks advising Henry Ford's lawyer not to invest in the Ford Motor Company, 1901
If God wanted us to fly, He would have given us wings; He would have made us angels; He would have made us birds. Let me assure you, you will not see people fly.
- Milton Wright, minister, Church of Christ, father of Wilbur and Orville Wright, 1903
Sensible and responsible women do not want to vote.
- Grover Cleveland, 1905
The wireless music box has no imaginable commercial value. Who would pay for a message sent to nobody in particular?
- Robert Milliken, Nobel Prize-winning physicist, 1923
A rocket will never be able to leave the earth's atmosphere.
- New York Times, 1936
As far as sinking a ship with a bomb is concerned, it can never be done.
- Admiral Clark Woodward on the eve of the Second World War
Everything that can be invented has been invented.
- Charles Duell, commissioner U. S. Patent Office, 1899
While theoretically and technically television may be feasible, commercially and financially I consiser it an impossibility.
- Lee DeForest, inventor of the vacuum tube, 1926
Who the hell wants to hear actors talk?
- Harry Warner, film producer, 1927
You'd better learn secretarial work or else get married.
- Director of Blue Book Modelling Agency advising Marilyn Monroe, 1944
Space travel is utter bilge.
- British astronomer, 1956
Television won't last because people will soon get tired of staring at a plywood box every night.
- Darryl Zanuck, 1946
If anything remains more or less unchanged, it will be the role of women.
- David Riesman, social scientist, 1967
I think there is a world market for about five computers.
- Thomas Watson, chairman IBM, 1958
You ain't going nowhere son. You ought to go back to driving a truck.
- Jim Denny, manager of the Grande Ole Opry in firing Elvis Presley, 1954
We will bury you.
- Nikita Kruschev, 1958
We don't like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out anyway.
- Decca Records president, rejecting the Beatles, 1962
By 2000, politics will simply fade away. We will not see any political parties.
- Buckminster Fuller, 1966
There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in their home.
- Kenneth Olson, founder of Digital Equipment, 1977
On the personal computer: 640 K (of memory) ought to be enough for anyone.
- Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, 1980
Go as far as you can see, and when you get there you will see farther.
- Henry Drummond