One of our favorites in that genre is The Beloit College Mindset List, providing 75 "cultural touchstones that shape the lives of students entering college."
This year's list presumes students entering the class of 2013 were born in 1991.
Just a few of our favorites - they have more serious ones:
-- The Green Giant has always been Shrek, not the big guy picking vegetables.
-- Salsa has always outsold ketchup.
-- Chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream has always been a flavor choice.
-- There has always been a Cartoon Network.
The list also addresses some of the same issues creating havoc in the news and media.
"Members of the class of 2013 won't be surprised when they can charge a latté on their cell phone and curl up in the corner to read a textbook on an electronic screen. The migration of once independent media — radio, TV, videos and CDs — to the computer has never amazed them."
So help us help Beloit editors get ready for future lists. Here's a few media-news-related items that may come up in a few years or possibly for the class of 2031. Please add items that you might dread or embrace. (Please use the comments section and we'll pull them back out to our main site.)
Will we see items such as these:
-- News has always been downloaded free to handheld mobile readers and never printed on paper.
-- Pictures have always been digital and Photoshopped in broad daylight and never burned and dodged in a darkroom.
-- Pulitzer-Prize-winning investigative reports have always been written 140 characters at a time by citizen journalists and never by well-paid or even poorly paid reporters working for a news organization.
-- Great literature has always been read for free on 2-inch-wide screens.
-- TV shows were always watched on demand and never at a time scheduled by a so-called TV network.
-- Facebook friends have always shared their private thoughts through HuffPost Social News and never emailed each other, picked up a phone, or met at a Starbucks, which has always only had tables for one.
What's on your future Beloit list?