Predictions for the Four-Hour Work Day in 2023 Were Met With Celebration and Ridicule in 1923
"Steinmetz says four hours is a day’s work. The boss says it is hard to get a man to work that long.”
By the year 2023, the regular workday will be just four hours. At least that was the prediction from one of the smartest guys around in 1923.
Back in the early 1920s, inventor Charles P. Steinmetz would get his name in the paper by making bold predictions for the future. Steinmetz predicted in 1921, for example, that people who were living 100 years into the future would be in homes with complete control over the temperature. It was a radical prediction for 1923, when central air conditioning didn’t really exist, but an accurate guess for what would happen in wealthy countries.
A couple of years later, Steinmetz made headlines across the U.S. yet again with a fresh set of predictions about the future of work. Steinmetz predicted the people of 2023 would be living in luxury thanks to automation and the labor-saving devices of tomorrow. But the reactions to Steinmetz’s prognostications are arguably as interesting as the predictions themselves.
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