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Douglas Adams takes the rap for Google's mission creep

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Google chairman Eric Schmidt is a big fan of the work of Britain's beloved sci-fi writer Douglas Adams, who died nearly 11 years ago.

The author, who penned The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, had done a good job of predicting the future, according to Schmidt, who was talking at the opening of the world's biggest IT fair, CeBIT in Hanover, Germany yesterday.

He also gave Captain Kirk a nod of appreciation, too.

"Think back to Star Trek, or my favourite, The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. Much of what those writers imagined is now possible," Schmidt said, reported the AFP.

"Translating... voice recognition, electronic books. The people who predict that intelligent robots, virtual reality or self-driving cars will soon be commonplace are right," he continued.

"Governments will be able to spot the economic makings of a crisis before they happen and doctors will be able to accurately predict the outbreak of disease before anyone feels it." ®

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