It’s that time again! My 2011 predictions were only about half right, but I hope that my predictions for 2012 are a little more accurate. Let’s gaze back into that crystal ball…

1. The World Does Not End

The human race has evolved to look for patterns, helping to explain the world around us. Sometimes, these patterns aren’t exactly accurate. We thought the world was going to end with Y2K (we’re still here!) and now we think that the world is going to end in 2012, because that’s when the Mayan Calendar abruptly ends too. Several comic strip artists have already illustrated this point, but I’m fairly certain the human existence will continue beyond 2012.

2. Barack Obama Wins 2012 Election

Some time ago, there was a poll conducted that asked how Obama would fair against various Republican candidates in the 2012 US Presidential election. The poll revealed that Obama won against any specific candidate, but lost against the generic Republican. In other words, the winner of Obama vs. Romney would be Obama; the winner of Obama vs. Cain would be Obama; the winner of Obama vs. Gingrich would be Obama; but the winner of Obama vs. Generic Republican Candidate would be Generic Republican Candidate.

Unfortunately for the GOP, they do have to pick a specific candidate to run against the current POTUS. Barack Obama may not have completely lived up to his promises of hope and change, but he should be able to overcome whatever specific Republican candidate faces off against him in the 2012 campaign.

3. Baltimore Ravens Are Super Bowl XLVI Champions

This is a tough one. The current NFL season has seen many assumptions turned on their heads with Indianapolis only having two wins (no Peyton makes a profound difference) and the 49ers having the second best record in the league. Even so, the Ravens have been reasonably consistent (they had hiccups too) and they have a solid shot at the Vince Lombardi Trophy. I say the Ravens face off against Aaron Rodgers and the defending champion Green Bay Packers, beating them in a close and hard fought game.

4. Canucks Get Stanley Cup Rematch with Bruins

Last year, I predicted that the Vancouver Canucks would win the Stanley Cup. They came up one game short of that feat, losing quite badly to the Bruins in game seven. The riots that followed didn’t make us feel any better. I’m not sure if the Canucks will win the Cup this second time around, but it looks like we could see the same Cup final pairing.

5. Canada Finishes Top 16 Total Medals at 2012 Olympics

Sticking with sports, the 2012 Summer Olympic Games are set to take place in London. Canada has usually been a better contender at the Winter Olympics, but we have been able to make some steady progress. In terms of a total medal count, Canada went from 24th to 21st to 19th place in the 2000, 2004, and 2008 Summer Olympic Games, respectively. For 2012, I predict a top 16 finish.

Blackberry Playbook

6. Amazon Does Not Buy Research in Motion

In the world of technology, all kinds of rumors are surrounding the eventual sale of Research in Motion. The BlackBerry maker has certainly seen brighter days, but all of those patents hold a heck of a lot of value. There have been rumblings about many potential suitors and Amazon is one of the latest. However, I don’t see Amazon going through with this deal. RIM may get sold, but not to Amazon.

7. Nintendo 3DS and PlayStation Vita Struggle for Attention

Even though there are better games available for the Nintendo 3DS these days, it’s becoming harder and harder to justify the typical $40 price point for individual games on a portable console. Yes, Mario Kart 7 and Fruit Ninja aren’t exactly the same thing, but consumers have come to expect that their portable games cost no more than a few dollars. The PlayStation Vita was recently released in Japan and is set for North America in February. I have a feeling it will be met with a similar fate as its Nintendo competitor. They’ll get some attention from mostly diehard fans, but they won’t achieve the same kind of mass appeal as the old Game Boy or even the relatively recent Nintendo DS Lite.

8. Google+ Continues to Play Second (or Third) Fiddle

Considering that Google dominates so many aspects of our daily lives, it only made sense that its social network would have a big impact too. That hasn’t really come to be, despite all kinds of fervor among early adopters and social media evangelists. It’s not going to fade into the sunset, but it won’t be the de facto social tool that Facebook (or Twitter) has become.

9. US Dollar Breaks 1.10 Vs. Canadian Dollar

The American dollar has struggled these last few years, largely due to the struggling economy. As one of the most profound business factors outside of my control, the exchange rate between USD and the Canadian dollar is of monumental interest to me. I’m trying to be optimistic, but realistic at the same time. So, I’m predicting that the USD/CAD rate will peak at around 1.10 some time in 2012, but will settle around the 1.05 to 1.07 mark by the end of next year.

10. Seven Movies Are Nominated for Best Picture Oscar

Without getting into the details, the nomination process for the Best Picture Academy Award is changing for 2012. There will now be anywhere from five to ten nominees for this category. This prediction isn’t really based on anything aside from some early buzz, but I say seven is a good number. Some possible nominees include Hugo, The Artist, The Descendants, War Horse, and Midnight in Paris.

Do you have any fun predictions for 2012? Let’s hear them in the comment section below.