Tonawanda News


January 27, 2013

DUVALL: Taking a look into the future


Tonawanda News — Another bold Davos prediction? We’ll all be sitting in self-driving cars in a few years.

I’m inherently skeptical about any transportation-related predictions ever since we were promised flying cars in by sometime in Ronald Reagan’s second term. This is by far the most let down I’ve ever been by a prediction. I WANT MY FLYING CAR! WHERE IS IT?!

But there’s an actual question I’m willing to consider: Would self-driving cars be safer? Seriously, most GPS units can’t ever seem to figure out when to say I should turn. I picture myself lounging in my car, sipping coffee and reading the paper while it drives me to work, only to look up and realize I’m about to careen into a McDonalds drive thru because the car thinks it’s my office instead.

Upside? Old people aren’t in control of vehicles and no one will ever need a designated driver. Drinks on me!

Health care

Doctors and researchers agreed research into genetics will continue to unlock clues to a multitude of illnesses, particularly mental illnesses. Scientists envision being able to alter improperly formed or performing cells to address such things as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

I have a cynical prediction: No one is really going to pay enough money to fix problems we presently address by sticking the mentally ill in state wards. The research is certainly interesting, but where’s the financial motive for companies to profit from helping people with no means to repay them?


Another bold prediction from Davos: A huge increase in 3D printing.

Or, as we used to call it, making stuff.

Eric DuVall is the managing editor of the Tonawanda News. His column appears Wednesdays and Sundays. Contact him at

Text Only
  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Conflict in Ukraine now a concern of global proportions It seems increasingly clear Ukrainian separatists, with the help from the Russian military, are responsible for the tragedy. They, of course, have denied it. They've also denied access to the crash site to international investigators seeking to recover the dead and determine what happened. That's not something the innocent party does.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADAMCZYK: Personal development, rendered in steel Accepting the premise that everyone needs to fill the same amount of time every day (24 hours, every day), some people use theirs rebuilding things, tangible things, and thus fulfill a few intangible goals.

    July 18, 2014

  • WALLACE: Festival season is underway Summer is the season of fairs and festivals. From Canal Fest in the Tonawandas to the Allentown Art Festival and Italian Heritage Festival in Buffalo to the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, the Western New York area has no shortage of things to do with the family over the summer.

    July 17, 2014

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: King George's abdication leaves many questions I've covered Niagara County politics for 10 years and it's been a fascinating -- and often infuriating -- experience. With the news the man known with equal parts respect and cynicism as "King George" is walking away it's about to get more interesting.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Canal Fest, here we come This column should be titled "Roads and Streets." First of all, Meadow Drive is finally open. Although it took very long to be completed, it's beautiful. Riding by the other day brought into focus how many people will use this to cut across town. One less thing for residents to complain about.

    July 12, 2014

  • ADAMCZYK: Homesick for someplace I've never been You stumble over things that make you wonder. I do, at least, and the latest is one of those advertising artifacts from yesteryear that encourage me to ponder what's changed and what never will.

    July 11, 2014

  • WALLACE: Playing politics as usual The immigration crisis is just the most recent example of how dysfunctional Washington, D.C. is right now.

    July 10, 2014

  • duvall, eric.jpg A stunning scandal in Mississippi-voting|DUVALL: A stunning scandal in Mississippi We don't tend to talk a whole lot about Mississippi on this paper's editorial page and for good reason. It's a long way away in both distance and temperament. But I swear this will be worth it.

    July 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: Employers don't need 24/7 access to workers

    July 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Taste of Buffalo sneaks up again This time next week you can find me tromping somewhere up and down Delaware Avenue in Buffalo. I'll be there with tens of thousands of my closest friends.

    July 6, 2014 1 Photo