Yesterday at noon I was packing my bag in a hotel room, booked in advance over the Web, when the television turned itself on and told me that it was time for me to check out. A taxi with GPS picked me up and took me to Glasgow airport. There I waited for a ticketless flight that I had also booked over the Web. After I arrived, I browsed my Weblog on my mobile phone in an airport lounge and read a comment posted there by a friend in the Philippines. Then I rang a freephone number to connect to a more reasonably priced international phone service provider so that I could catch up with another friend in Israel, who told me about the latest terrorist scare at Heathrow airport. In return, I shared with her my gossip about some of her former colleagues at an Israeli research institute who had been attending the same international conference I had just left.

All that computer and communications technology is amazing, but if I had had my personal anti-grav transport by now I wouldn’t have had to deal with the flight being delayed by two-and-half-hours. It’s 2004. It’s four years overdue. Where is my flying car?