Of all the things a person from the 1800s would be surprised to see in the 21st century, ecigarettes could very well be the weirdest.
But given the current breakneck pace of technological innovation, the vaping pens we're familiar with today could very well seem obsolete and dated in just a matter of years.
Who knows what the future of vaping will really bring? In the meantime, let's throw out a few of our own hypotheses, shall we?
Willy Wonka eliquid flavours
Remember that flavour-changing bubble gum that could pack an entire three-course dinner into one stick of candy? Who's to say eliquid won't become similarly dynamic in the future? Maybe flavours like roast chicken and bacon won't seem so jarring to vapers 50 years from now if it's part of a simulated meal -- complete with a sweet dessert at the end, of course.
Conversely, perhaps eliquid will follow in the footsteps of mood rings. You'll get a different flavour from the same base formula depending on your specific body chemistry.
A Google Glass-enabled vape pen
We're all well on our way to becoming the cyborgs of Ray Kurzweil's dreams, so it's not too much of a stretch to imagine a future where vape pens are integrated into the same user interface as our smart phones and mobile apps. And because we'll all be Glassholes (or some future incarnation of such), we'll be able to get our vapes started with a simple voice command.
Instant vaping transfers
What's the future without some sort of social component? Venmo has changed the way we transfer money to each other. Maybe in the future, we'll be able to "vape" with whomever we want by digitally transferring eliquid to share with to one another, regardless of where we are in the world. You'll never have to vape alone again.
Forget wearables like Google Glass. In the future, we'll have chips implanted in our eyeballs and under our skin, making us human smart phones (rather than humans with smart phones). Let's imagine a future where we can begin vaping without an external instrument -- using eliquid that we conjure telepathically with our minds. You know, kind of like robot dragons.
The obsolescence of smoking -- period
If vaping is helping so many people kick the cigarette habit now, think about how much more advanced it could become as a smoking cessation tool. From a purely health-related standpoint, the end goal of picking up an ecigarette is to eventually stop having to puff on anything at all. The logical conclusion of this is to make smoking (and vaping) a thing of the past -- like ScarJo in "Her" and "Lucy," the vaping phenomenon will evolve so rapidly, it'll have no option but to depart to another dimension -- or disappear into the ether.