Some things once thought to be preposterous are now the norm. For example, about 160 years ago if you told someone we would all someday have a box installed in our homes that would randomly interrupt us by making a sound to which everyone in the home would immediately run, you would be told, “when pigs fly.” Eventually, practically every home in the country had a telephone installed and that preposterous prediction came true.
As another example, not too many years ago if you told someone we would someday have a device in our hands that would provide instant access to practically anyone in the world to discuss anything, you would be told you had a wild and crazy imagination. Today, most of us have static and mobile devices that provide instant access to the Internet where we can chat with almost anyone about anything. That pig has flown.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is proposing another preposterous idea that just might come true. Bezos envisions the strategic use of computer-piloted drones to deliver packages to our homes. Well, that is certainly something that has never been done and it does sound a bit wild and crazy. However, when we contemplate the track record of technology, the imagination of innovation, and the timing of trends, this just might be an idea whose time has come. Brad Stone seems to agree (“Why Amazon’s Going Up In the Air” Bloomberg Businessweek, 12/9/13–12/15/13, pp. 12–13):
“One of Bezos’s signature strengths is combining technology and a penchant for bold, risky bets that disrupt otherwise languorous industries. He did so first in retail, and then in the book publishing industry with the Kindle. An army of unmanned octocopters darkening the skies over major cities could take expensive trucks off congested streets, help solve the last-mile problem, and give Amazon Prime members a way to indulge their basest shopping impulses—all of which could prove hugely profitable.” (p. 13)
Soon it might be more than pigs that are flying.