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Tuesday, August 07, 2012

A Very Brief Demonstration That Humans Will Never Have "Time Machines"

We don't see any time machines, or any evidence of the use of time machines, around us now.

Think about it.

13 comments:

  1. I already have thought about it, many times. However, one must take into account the number of time-travelers, the instance of time-travel, as well as the probability that this is such a time to be travelled upon. Then, there is the perspective of one who has supposedly seen a time traveller, and the ability to confirm such data. Then, once you bring into the picture the implications of bending time, such a thing could have taken place yet no confirmation is possible (alternate universes and such).

    Thinking about this will give me room-spins faster than a fifth of whiskey, though it (whiskey) often helps with the thinking.

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    1. Yes, I suppose if the very first time traveller in 2100 travels to 2050, but his arrival there destroys the physical universe, we would never have seen one.

      I was thinking, "If time travel is ever to be something like car travel, we would have it now."

      Because even if it were illegal to smuggle the technology backwards in time, think of the profit from doing so! And it would only have to be smuggled to our time once, in all the centuries that follow its existence. (And again, the end of the human race or something like that, soon after the invention of time travel, would negate this demonstration.)

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    2. Yet, if one were a time-traveller, he would know the time and place to make such a profit. Since we only know the past, we must fully discount the future. Well, unless you're a time-traveller.

      What I really mean to say is is that maybe this isn't the time and place that time-travellers demand, and that such a time and place may not have occurred yet (from our perspective), or that they (the time-travellers) chose a future time for their time-travels, of which we (ourselves) have not yet arrived at.

      Maybe all human innovations in our time have come as the result of time-travellers looking for a future profit. Would you know the difference? Well, not without data to support such a thing, which is absent. But then, couldn't the time-travellers foresee a hole in their plans of invisibility, and force such information to disappear from the historic record just as easily as they manipulated events for their fortune?

      Whoa... spinning... I think I'm ready to vomit now.

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    3. Have some whiskey.

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    4. Ah, yes. That's the ticket.

      Seriously though, I believe that you're thinking about this far too linearly.

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  2. BTW, when I say that we must fully discount the future, I am not talking in economic terms, rather I am talking in terms of time travel. Just to be clear.

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  3. Time is not space, and therefore is not something through which we can travel.
    We explain movement via time, but then turn around and impute to time the sort of characteristics movements have. You can move forward in space, and this sensation of moving forward is strongly contingent on having a side of yourself that you consider to be the front.

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  4. Maybe we are in the first "iteration" of our time. Let's say next year someone invents time travel. Even if he comes to our time, there must be a version of our time in which no time traveler has come yet. This is what I call the first "iteration" of our time. Maybe that's the version of today we are in.

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    1. The first "iteration" of our time?! This is the kind of nonsensical talk that considering time travel as possible leads to.

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    2. Pedro, there is a name for times that have not yet happened: that name is "the future." These "iterations" would not be "our time" at all if they haven't happened: they'd be the future.

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  5. I wonder if you understood what I meant. It was more like a parallel "now" (like in "Back from the Future", remember? There were two versions of the same year). Still, I wasn't talking seriously, man. I don't think time travel is possible at all. But I don't think the argument in your post is right, either.

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  6. Gene, I don't think time travel is possible at all. I wasn't serious, but I wonder if you understood what I meant. What I mean is this: if time travel is to be invented in 2020, only after 2020 will someone be able to go back to 2012. But the instant before that happens, a "version" of the year 2012 already happened, in which nobody from the future was there. Otherwise, something happened before it could possibly have happened (that's precisely the problem with time travel, right?). So, after someone goes back in 2012, the 2012 in which he is is different from the first version of 2012. This means we've reached an absurdity.

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    1. Ok, Pedro, we are on the same page.

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