time travel real?

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by varek, Apr 13, 2014.

  1. varek

    varek Commander Red Shirt

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    Here is a really strange story I came across.

    A person calling himself John Titor—who claimed to have traveled back in time from the year 2036—claimed that he had been sent back to obtain an IBM 5100, because it could translate several types of computer code. Bob Dubke, an engineer with IBM, said that “Titor's statements regarding the IBM 5100's little-known ability to emulate and debug mainframe systems were correct.”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Titoralib
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBM5100
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/APL_programming_language

    Makes you wonder, doesn’t it?
     
  2. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral Admiral

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    John Titor is an infamous internet phenom. We even had a poster here going by that name for a while, though I doubt it was the same person behind it.
     
  3. BillJ

    BillJ Admiral Admiral

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    Nope. Not even a little.
     
  4. varek

    varek Commander Red Shirt

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    I was thinking, even if he was a fake, allegedly the IBM expert said the IBM 5100 had those capabilities.

    If so, could they be of special value to Star Trek builders/programmers of computers?
     
  5. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral Admiral

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    Not any more than any other computer is to fictional builders/programmers.
     
  6. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Titor is full of whale shit. And as for his "predictions"? He probably ripped it off Alas, Babylon anyway.
     
  7. Avon

    Avon Commodore Commodore

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    everyone travels forwards in time
     
  8. YellowSubmarine

    YellowSubmarine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The poster here was the same John Titor, but from another timeline. Though he died in 1634 and had to stop posting. I know this because I am his granddad and great grandmother.
     
  9. scotthm

    scotthm Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yes it does, but not about time travel.

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  10. publiusr

    publiusr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Let him do five years worth of flawless brackets and Superbowl scores, then we'll talk.
     
  11. Dryson

    Dryson Captain Captain

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    Personally I don't believe in Time Travel because to do so would mean having to change the state of matter for every particle in the Universe including the entire Universe back to a former state of interaction which based upon gravitational constants would cause the entire Universe to collapse in on itself and then release itself in another completely different form of existence.

    If this were to happen then everything would be gone in an instant and no of else would be around.

    ....but he is the interesting reality of Time Travel that can and does prove that we are all moving in the same moment in time both foreword and reverse.

    First you have a clock that has a see through face on it. The clock mechanics on the inside can clearly be seen. On the side of the clock that is facing you the hourly numbers are visible and are placed normally going clockwise. Now we turn the clock around to the other side and we have numbers measuring the time going clockwise as well. You'll notice that if you peer through the glass to the other side of the clock that the numbers are equally opposite of each other but both are traveling counter-clockwise and clock-wise at the same time.

    The hour and minute hand are two single pieces that run between the space of both hourly measurements so as to precisely measure time with a single mechanism instead of having an out of tune mechanic.

    Now lets turn the clock around to the first side and begin the clock at 12:00. As the hands begin to move clock-wise you will notice that on the other side that the clock is measuring time as flowing backwards. So when the clock reaches 1pm it has also reached 11 am on the opposite measurement proving that time does flow backwards and forwards at the same time while the clock hands find an equilibrium of measurement at its center.

    If your able to adjust the clock hands so that 2 pm measured 2 pm on the opposite clock facing then you will have achieved time travel and most likely entered a segment of space called sub-space where species like 8472 live.
     
  12. Australis

    Australis Writer Admiral

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    You wouldn't have to reset the entire universe to travel back in time. It would be a localised event. Much as, if we ever get there, FTL will not be about adjusting the universe but only a ship, so that it moves around/bypasses/cuts through conventinal space.
     
  13. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    Every moment I exist, I travel forward through time.
    Everywhere I rest my gaze is a window into the past.

    In this way, time travel is real.
    In any other way? Probably bullshit.
     
  14. Hober Mallow

    Hober Mallow Commodore Commodore

    But that wouldn't actually be FTL travel.
     
  15. Spider

    Spider Dirty Old Man Premium Member

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    What's wrong with time travel? Without it we wouldn't have time travel.
     
  16. ManOnTheWave

    ManOnTheWave Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It does make me wonder. Largely about psychopharmacology.
     
  17. USS Triumphant

    USS Triumphant Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Here's a thought experiment to prove that time travel is impossible*:

    Suppose you invented time travel right now, today. Now let's say you're a clever, sneaky person, and you managed to use it to make yourself wealthy and save some people you care about from accidental deaths or by getting them preventative care for illnesses that otherwise would have killed them, all while keeping it completely secret. You destroy your time travel device once you're satisfied with the benefit you've taken from it, and you never reveal it to anyone.

    Doesn't matter. Because if a thing is possible, someone will discover it again. And again. And again if necessary. In 10 years or 10,000 years someone is going to discover it and they're going to fail to be as clever and sneaky as you, and word is going to get out. Some government or private group may control it for a while, but eventually (remember, we have all of time to work with here), the tech WILL escape into the wild, and when it does, there's going to be all sorts of shenanigans. Time theft (stealing cool stuff from the past and future), and more importantly for our purposes, temporal tourism.

    Now, to begin with it may be limited to the wealthy who will go to see the signing of the Magna Carta and such with guides who will dress them in period attire and help them to be very careful not to disrupt the timeline. But eventually, Joe Schlub and his family are going to want to take a vacation back to before it was necessary to wear breathing masks to survive outside on Earth, and the best place for the family budget is going to be in some cheesy hotel in your town in 2014, because all of the best spots will have been taken by other temporal tourists.

    So there you go. The fact that you are not, as we speak, surrounded by temporal tourists, while being interviewed by future historians about what it was like to live in 2014, proves that time travel is not possible.

    *There's actually two other things that this argument could prove:

    1. Time travel involves branching of timelines, and the reason we've never encountered a solid, provable temporal anomaly is that WE are the ORIGINAL branch, so there are no changes here. All the fun stuff happens elsewhere.

    2. Every civilization throughout space and time wipes itself out before reaching a level of tech that allows time travel.

    But both of those are so depressing that I'd really just prefer to think that time travel is impossible.
     
  18. YellowSubmarine

    YellowSubmarine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'd argue that all things being equal, time travel within the same timeline is many orders of magnitude (if not many infinitesimal orders*) less likely than time travel to an alternative timeline. Alternative timelines per se are just as likely as ours, so time travelling there does not increase complexity (save for the time travel itself).

    Travelling to your own magnifies the complexity for the reasons you've stated. Not only you'd have the grandfather paradox hanging over our entire species and historical records, the whole idea of cause and effect that are the essence of evolution and human history could go out of the window. For that to not happen, time travel needs to be limited in exactly the ways that is necessary for the world as we know it to continue to exist. Perhaps the world itself would also require its own adjustments to be susceptible to non-destructive time travel. That's a whole bunch of unnecessary complexity that you get rid of by simply getting rid of time travel. Since no time travel is in any way necessary for what we observe to exist, Occam's razor would suggest that unnecessary complexity (and time loops) aren't there.

    This doesn't mean that time loops are impossible. On one hand, time travel still could be both difficult and limited, allowing safe travel to your own (e.g.. if it is only practically impossible it would still be safe :D ). On the other, if time travel to alternative timelines is possible, and people were to keep taking advantage of that, at one point the timelines might start to repeat themselves for the lack of options, hence time loops might suddenly become a possibility in special-case alternative timelines that are identical to the original ones. Unfortunately, in the latter case, each time jump you find yourself in a less likely timeline (just like every wavefunction collapse puts you in a less likely universe by its inherent - now more complicated - configuration). Hence, the time loop timeline is incredibly, incredibly unlikely in itself, so we can't be at the receiving end of it. That's why there are no time travelling historians around us. :(

    I recently had another idea that might give some credibility to the notion of time travel. Perhaps a universe with unlimited time travel, i.e. a universe without a time dimension, is simpler and hence the default option, but it is incredibly boring, full of nothing, without any causal links between states, incapable of supporting intelligent life, so one of the dimensions needs to be specialised as much as possible to support evolution by separating cause and effect. And here we are, but the specialisation is shaky, so some causes might sneak before the effects. (For example, one might interpret portions of quantum mechanics as time travel at the microscopic level, alas if that's all you have, you can't do much with it. See practical impossibility.)

    * Maybe the probability of our universe is equal to zero, hence we're dealing with some form of infinitesimals. I have no knowledge on either the theory or the terminology in that field, so forgive me if that's a nonsensical thing to say.
     
  19. USS Triumphant

    USS Triumphant Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The neat thing is that even if time travel is impossible in the way we generally understand it, some of the current models of the multiverse say that out beyond our universe is a near-infinite number of other universes, and a near-infinite subset of those would be identical to ours or only slightly different. Some might be exactly the same except for their rate of development is 10 years behind. So if we could develop instantaneous or very very very fast travel through *space*, we could for all intents and purposes visit an Earth just like ours was 10 years ago. Or, even if the trip took a thousand years, if we could put ourselves in cryo or something, we could still do it - we'd just need to find a universe that is (duration of journey + 10) years behind ours developmentally and the same in all other aspects that matter to us, and we'd be set. :techman: ;)
     
  20. YellowSubmarine

    YellowSubmarine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'd go further and replace near-infinite with infinite, and then replace infinite with every possible, and then replace every possible with every possible thing that resembles a universe when you're drunk, stoned and on meth at the same time. Computer science has taught me that every possible thing, including all the absolute nonsense, is as probable as nothing, hence the more universe-like things you have, the more plausible all the rest become. Maybe. So why not go for the maximum possible plausibility by including everything?

    That being said, I am sceptical of this multiverse thing. The word multiverse implies the universes are connected, similar on some level, and maybe you could even travel between them. As I used to tell my dad when I was 12 – dad, the universe is everything there is, if you can go there, it is the same universe. (I wish I was still that insightful!) I do not believe such connection is possible (as it would also complicate things – you'd now have to explain more than one universe!), and the only way to travel to other universes would be to imagine them. Sadly, the imagined universe would probably be too complex for a computer simulation, but you could theoretically simulate it to go there.
     

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