The UK’s celebrated TV illusionist Derren Brown appeared to get the future right on Wednesday this week when he predicted the outcome of the National Lottery on live TV. As this blog is concerned with the future it seems appropriate to comment. Setting aside the temporarily beguiling explanation offered on his Friday night TV show, on this occasion he was given away by a slight error. If you look very carefully at this clip of the prediction and step between 6:05 and 6:07 you will see that the ball on the extreme left jumps up very slightly. This is almost certainly the telltale for a split-screen illusion which allowed the balls to be changed by assistants, who unfortunately failed to pack all the new balls down flat. The constant camera movement could preclude split-screen, but if you look carefully you can see there is no parallax displacement of the background behind the balls, suggesting that this was not camera movement but a video effect. This is a curiously elaborate way of doing things, as radio receivers inside the balls and e-paper on the outside ought to have been easier. Sad really, as it would have been much more fun if he really had predicted the future.