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Forecasting refers to a process of making a prediction of coming events, results or conditions. Forecasting is a process a person or an organization can use to think about and prepare for the future. Quantitative forecasting methods use historical data. A number of commentators have equated quantitative forecasting to driving a car by only looking in the rearview mirror. "As long as the road is straight or curving in wide arcs, a driver can stay on the road by looking backward. However, if a sharp turn occurs or a bridge is out, the driver will crash." Peter Drucker is quoted as saying "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window."

from Allen R. Beck, "Forecasting: Fiction and Utility in Jail Construction Planning", Correctional Building News, August 1998. Available online at:

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