In the late 90s, some brainiacs created a computer program called Web-bot to make stock market predictions, perhaps out of a belief that large amounts of money would be the only way any of them would ever get laid. Web-bot works like an Internet search engine does, but it presents its results in the form of numerical trends.
Basically, it was designed to tap in to our collective unconscious by analyzing information on the Internet and then make predictions based on its findings. So it's kind of like Trending Topics on Twitter, only people inexplicably trusted it to provide meaningful financial advice.
In 2001, the aforementioned brainiacs reasoned that if their program could be used to predict the stock market, it should be able to predict the future as well. According to the Web-bot, small nuclear wars will erupt somewhere in the world in 2009, initiating a series of events resulting in a major cataclysm sometime in--wait for it--the year 2012.
What Predictions (Supposedly) Came True?
Space Shuttle Columbia tragedy
New York blackout of 2003
Anthrax scares at the U.S. House of Representatives
Why it Might be Bullshit:
The Web-bot's data pool is limited to what is being discussed on the Internet. If the National Hurricane Center predicts that an upcoming hurricane season will be a particularly bad one, and everyone online starts talking about it, the Web-bot will spring into action by helpfully predicting the upcoming hurricane season will be a particularly bad one.
So why is the Web-bot predicting a cataclysmic event in 2012? Because end of the world alarmists are flooding the Internet with tons of information alleging some apocalyptic occurrence in 2012, that's why. Seriously, it's the Carlos Mencia of clairvoyant robots.
You look like a baby.
3The Hopi Indians
The Hopi are one of America's oldest Indian tribes, found in the northeastern section of Arizona along with absolutely nothing else. They have a rich mythology filled with Spider Women, Skeleton Men and the repeated creation and destruction of the Earth. They are a bleak people.
The Hopi believe time to be cyclical and made up of a number of worlds. When a world begins it is innocent and pure, but as time goes by the world and its people become corrupted by sex, war and other things we pay 10 dollars a ticket to see at AMC.
At the height of decay the world ends, its people are purified, and everything starts over from the beginning. We'd like to imagine it as the end of Matrix Revolutions, except that we swore on our father's grave we would never think about that movie ever again.
Fuck you, Matrix Revolutions. Fuck you forever.
According to the Hopi lore, we are currently living in the fourth world. Sadly, due to the white man and his insatiable white quest for spiritless technology, we are rapidly approaching the Great Purification. Once we all pass through a cosmic Brita filter we will enter world five, which as fate would have it is the one with all the goddamn hammer brothers.
And people figure, hey, might as well be 2012, right? After all, these prophets can't all be wrong.
What Predictions (Supposedly) Came True?
There are nine signs that lead to the Great Purification.
Dastardly white men with guns.
"The coming of spinning wheels filled with voices" - early American pioneers in wagons, or bass-thumping Escalades with spinning rims.
The coming of the white man's cattle - Longhorns.
"The land will be crossed by snakes of iron" - Railroads.
The world will be crisscrossed by a giant spider's web - telephone lines or the Internet.
The building of a large network of roads.
"...The sea turning black, and many living things dying..." - Oil spills.
"...Many youth, who wear their hair long like my people, come and join the tribal nations..." - hippies.
A "dwelling-place in the heavens... that shall fall with a great crash" - U.S. Space Station Skylab, which fell to Earth in 1979.
Why it Might be Bullshit
The signs of the Hopi apocalypse read like a middle school American History text book with a particular emphasis on the ill-deeds of the white man. Consequently, they seem little more than elements of a curse or an elaborate revenge fantasy.
"Then the white people are all like, 'Don't kill us!' and we're all like, 'No! HAHAHAHA!'"
Still, predicting things like the "snakes of iron" that would crisscross the land? We have to admit it's pretty impressive that they predicted things like the railroads in... oh, wait, they didn't publish the prophecy until 1959.