One thing that the internet provides is personal commentary, much of it in the form of questions:
What if Japan had won World War Two?
How deadly are slingers, archers, and infantry with shields and swords?
These are all great questions if you’re going to write a novel, but of what I’ve seen, the question is raised, someone with a background in that area provides a logical answer, and the discussion is over.
On the other hand, when Ray Damadian asked, “What if you built a huge magnet, big enough for a person to fit inside, then aimed radio waves at them; could you produce an image?” it led to MRI scanners.
Look what happened when Einstein asked, “How do space, time, and energy fit together?”
How do we determine which questions will lead to the future, while others can be answered by quoting the past?
We don’t—and can’t—know until after the question is asked. The trick is to keep questioning, then question the answers.
Sorry, it’s not very profound. However, when you keep asking questions, sooner or later you’ll hit upon one that can’t be answered and must be explored. That is what leads us to the future. Who knows, if you ask the right question, you might be considered a genius.