Cory Doctorow is fond of quoting Gardner Dozois about predicting the social consequences of technology. It is one thing to predict the automobile, but quite another to predict drive-in movies and their explosive effect on teenage sexuality. And another thing still to predict that the licensing and identification requirements of the automobile would give birth to the database nation.
The formidable Arthur C. Clarke was capable not only of predicting but of inventing satellite communication. But would even he have predicted that one day not only will this technology be commonplace but getting your television this way would be a sign of your lower socio-economic status?