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For most of its 42 year history, Microsoft has based its profits on the Windows and Office cash-cows. Perpetual licenses, special deals with OEMs, licensing agreements with corporate customers and regular paid product upgrades drove the company's revenue for decades. But today's Microsoft is a different beast. With significant growth in almost every significant financial measure, Nadella's Microsoft is recording double digit growth on the back of revenue streams that didn't exist less than a decade ago.

Predicting the future is near impossible -- but that doesn‘t stop us all from having a red hot go. Human beings have been predicting the future since the beginning of history and the results range from the hilarious to the downright uncanny.

One thing all future predictions have in common: they‘re rooted in our current understanding of how the world works. It‘s difficult to escape that mindset. We have no idea how technology will evolve, so our ideas are connected to the technology of today.