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Time Machine - Page 2

post #31 of 6198
I think I understand the concept. If time is linear and time travel is possible... it would exist and be occuring all during that timeline (beginning to end). And that would have effects ("feedback loop") which would result in self-destruction. Since that has not happened, it's an argument that time travel has never been, is not now, and never will be possible.
post #32 of 6198
And the implied contradiction is that, if the feedback loop can happen, which it will if time travel is possible, then time cannot be linear and have any 'nows' that you can travel to, because they are changing all the time by time travelers who are already causing changes.

To deal with that contradiction, you have to accept the 'many nows' conjectures, which were discussed above. And the problem with that, even if it happens in contradiction to all the arguments I mentioned against it is, which past are you traveling to? If there are infinite nows, it might end up being easier to travel to the now where things worked out best for you than to try to go back and make the best happen for you, since, according to the many nows theories, the now in which everything worked out the best for you must exist. So if they are correct about the multiple nows, there is a variant universe out there, where you are a gazzillionair, hung like a French Bread, and have 25 Penthouse pets as lovers (all at the same time.)
post #33 of 6198
I'm formulating an argument for all of this. In fact I had begun to organize my thoughts around "what I was saying isn't based on any kind of knowledge advance".
About that time you made me loose my train of thought. I'm now stuck on this idea of what it would be like if I was hung like a french bread.

I'm not through yet. But will now need a little more time.
post #34 of 6198
I'm still formulating.
I've got the bread thing out of my mind. But while doing a little surfing, unfortunately I've now found THIS. It's going to be a long night.
post #35 of 6198
If you want to go back in time, put instant coffee in a microwave. Works for me. Yeah, that was a Steven Wright joke. I am skeptical of explanations (pro or con) that ask us to rely on magnitudes that our brains consider reasonable. Going back in time might be tricky. I really don't know. But going forward in time is possible. If we were in a spaceship that teetered on the point of no return on a black hole (I think it's called the Schwarzchild radius), we could take advantage of the fact that time slows down the closer you get to the "hole". At the edge of the radius, you and I (in the ship) would think that only a few seconds or minutes had passed. In reality, perhaps decades or even centuries had gone by on earth. This way, you could jump forward centuries or perhaps millenia. Time was slowed near the precipice of the black hole, but not on earth. This is my understanding and I could be wrong. Don't take my word for it.
post #36 of 6198
You are correct. Acceleration and gravity are effectively the same thing in relativity. So accelerating to the speed of light or sitting just above the event horizon of a black hole will both slow down time for you relative to others. But, you have to find a very big black hole in order to do it, because otherwise, the gravity will kill you if you try to get close enough to get the effect you want. Gravity diminishes by the square of the distance, so you want to get a really big one so that its event horizon is a large distance from its center. The only ones like that are at the center of galaxies. It is becoming pretty certain that we have one, but its 60,000 light years away unfortunately. So even if you could travel at the speed of light, which you can't, it would take you 60K years to get there. And those are 60K years your time, so you actually have to experience them.

And its not time travel in the way that its generally thought of, i.e. it does not prove or imply that time is linear and exists outside of the now. You are just making your nows very long compared to other people's nows. You aren't 'skipping over' any time in that way that is implied in time travel as its usually represented in movies like we are discussing.
post #37 of 6198
"what I was saying isn't based on any kind of knowledge advance"

I think that's exactly my point.
Why does it have to be an absolute given that IF time is linear and time travel is possible and is discovered... that this would certainly and necessarily result in self-destruction? Why do you reject even a possibility that some "knowledge advance" would provide us a means to avoid that?

I think this applies to everything we think we understand. Simply because we understand it only in the context of present day knowledge.
post #38 of 6198
This forward "time travel" is really just sitting in the chair for a hundred years and making it feel like two minutes. But it would get the job done. What if there are many worlds? If you were able to travel into the past and kill your parents before you were born, it wouldn't be a paradox. They are the parents of another "you" in another universe. I don't have an opinion on the likelihood of many universes. But it would be the ultimate mind blower (IMO), if true.
post #39 of 6198
For the same reason that I don't think that a cold cup of coffee will spontaneously become hot. You cannot travel back in time without affecting what happened. Its not possible. Our physical universe is a massively chaotic system (the butterfly effect is the standard example), and any change, over a sufficient period of time, can have massive changes. So the only way you could avoid the feedback system is if you don't ever go back. You might get lucky a couple times, but do you really think that if such a powerful tool existed that people wouldn't use it? But once you change even the slightest thing, then you reach the contradiction that the past couldn't have existed for you to travel back to, because you changed yourself, and therefore you very possibly don't exist.

And it can be the slightest thing. You get out of your time machine and step on a bee. But, had you not stepped on that bee, it would have flown off 1 second later, flew into a car, stung the driver, caused him to lose control, and crash, and kill a child who would have cured cancer. Even if that child wasn't important directly, all of the many generations of his/her descendants, and the efects they would have had on others, and so on, has now changed.

You might be able to go back in time to the middle of one of the massive million light year sized voids that exist out in between the web of galaxy structures without affecting anything. But even then, given a hundred million years (a drop in the bucket), some effect that you caused could migrate outward and affect something important.
post #40 of 6198
Quote:
If you were able to travel into the past and kill your parents before you were born, it wouldn't be a paradox. They are the parents of another "you" in another universe.

But, since in such theories, every possibility that could happen already has happened, and all of the possible alternate universes are there, then those alternate universes would have to include those caused by you coming back in time and causing other alternatives. I'm sure you can see how that would lead to not just a feedback loop, but an exponential explosion of what is already an exponential explosion of alternatives.

So, in those scenarios, you cannot go back and 'kill your parents', because you've already killed your parents, since that's one of the possibilities that could have happened. So you've not changed anything, everything that could have changed was changed and all of the alternatives already exist.
post #41 of 6198
"do you really think that if such a powerful tool existed that people wouldn't use it?"

"People" meaning what? People on Earth in 2002? Of course I don't think that. They would do it as sure as the next Shymalyan (or however it's spelled) movie will make money.
But don't you understand? If it's discovered a thousand years or a million years from now; neither you, nor I, nor anyone has any conception of what "people" will be or will know or will do at that time.

Everything you've postulated is based only on what you know in 2002.
post #42 of 6198
But although all possible outcomes do occur, they don't all occur in the same universe. There will be a nearly inifinite variety of outcomes, just as there are a nearly inifinte variety of universes. Isn't that consistent with the many worlds theory?
post #43 of 6198
Quote:
Everything you've postulated is based only on what you know in 2002.

Not so. Everything is based on the fact that, if it ever happens, it would be so destructive that we wouldn't be here to talk about it. But, no matter what you think about 'people' of the future, do you think that they would go through the massive effort of creating such a device and never even test it? What would be the point of ever even trying, if you never try it? You couldn't prove it worked until you tried it. And, once you do, you've opened Pandora's box, and all of the psychotic results will ensue. Also, once you've created it, and knowledge of it becomes public, then it will exist for all time after that, until each civilization that discovers the principle is destroyed. That means that all 'people' of that civilization, for all the time the entire civilization exists, will have to do exactly the perfectly correct thing. And even if that civilization manages to be perfect (yeh right), there will be plenty others that will be given a chance to screw up. You think that when the asteriod heads their way, that anyone who can escape to the past won't do so?

And, once they go back in time, that means that knowledge of time travel will immediately travel back further and further in time as well. So early and earlier times will be exposed to it, since once a time traveler arrives, don't you think he/she/it is going to want to have an escape route if possible? Or do they just stay forever where they wind up? Time travel will necessarily, if it can be done, require manipulation of space/time, which will require that they either send a machine back with them in order to get back (and none of them will ever in all of time fall into the hands of someone of the native time by accident?) or build a new one.
post #44 of 6198
Quote:
But although all possible outcomes do occur, they don't all occur in the same universe. There will be a nearly inifinite variety of outcomes, just as there are a nearly inifinte variety of universes. Isn't that consistent with the many worlds theory?

It is, but think about the results if every single possible 'coming back from the future and changing things' alternative had to exist. There are already an incomprehensible number of alternative universes branching off every microsecond. Now, every possibility that any atom from any point in the future could interact at any spot anywhere in every current moment would have to be added in. And, since everyone of those new alternatives creates an entirely new future, each of which in turn can send back any combination of atoms of its future back to interact with every possible atom of the current now.

Its a feedback loop that cannot ever be completed. So as soon as you started it, it would immediately begin to expand hyper-exponentially (if that's a word) and would never be able to stop. That's so ridiculously worse than the already ridiculous altnerative universe scenario that it approaches stupid.
post #45 of 6198
You have an advantage on me. 2 hours time difference (no pun intended). Let's pick it back up tomorrow.
post #46 of 6198
I'll use the time machine in my bedroom to achieve a low state of metabolic activity and travel forward to the time coordinates you indicate.
post #47 of 6198
Quote:
And, once they go back in time, that means that knowledge of time travel will immediately travel back further and further in time as well. So early and earlier times will be exposed to it"

What if it becomes possible to visit the past without the visitor's presence being visible to those who live in the past. In other words, what if right this moment a time traveler is standing immediately beside you?

If the visitor could prevent his presence from being known, why then would the past necessarily be altered by that visit?
What does that do to your contention that the "feedback loop" is a given?

p.s. I realize that this thought contradicts what I said in my third post to this thread (on page 1). But that post is now in the past. And my thinking has now evolved beyond that.

__________________________________________________

Completely aside from the above, I'm curious about something else. What's your take on this phenomenon of so many of us from all walks of life claiming to be witness to what they believe and describe as being "unidentified" (flying "saucers", lights, "beings", whatever form it takes)?
Do you believe that each and every one of these claims is either insincere or mistaken? And that not one of these people has actually been witness to something for which there is no current human understanding?
Or do you believe otherwise? If so, can you explain?
post #48 of 6198
Just because someone can't be seen, doesn't mean that they don't interact with the environment. I might not see you, but can still crush that bee that was going to kick off that horrible series of events. I pretty much completely reject that any future technology would allow one to be in an environment physically and have no effect on it whatsoever. The laws of physics are pretty absolute in those very fundamental aspects, and advancing technology isn't likely to help.

It cannot be disproven that aliens aren't watching us right now. But, that's a long way from it's being true. Most people don't understand how fully 'reality' is what your brain tells you it is, and if your brain tells you you were probed by a gorgeous alien, then that's your reality, and it will seem as real to you as any memories of real events. When it comes to the past, there is no reality outside of our memory banks. And if our memory banks become corrupted, then that new past is just as 'real' as the actual past would have been.

Personally, I find it incredulous that there could be any significant alien presence around earth for any great length of time, without there being some undeniable proof. I don't care how advanced one's minds and technology are, the universe is a dangerous place and accidents happen. Also, has many have pointed out, don't you think its a little overly convenient that man's obsession with aliens being all around didn't start until we ourselves created the image of space flight and alien invasions in the 1950s?
post #49 of 6198
I think we're at an impasse on the question of time travel. I'm trying to think outside of the 2002 box. But I'll admit that you're making an interesting agrument that doing so may be to no avail.

Quote:
"Also, as many have pointed out, don't you think its a little overly convenient that man's obsession with aliens being all around didn't start until we ourselves created the image of space flight and alien invasions in the 1950s?"

Could well be an explanation for much of it. But in all fairness, the
literature does include references to many such claims which occurred before, and sometimes long before there was any mention of "aliens".
For example when WW2 pilots were reporting sightings of "foo fighters", that was before any popular notions of space flight and before anyone had seen the 1950's "alien invasions" on movie screens. Those individuals and the other claimants who preceded them make no suggestion of aliens or extra-terrestrials or space ships as being what they saw.

I don't know what to make of it all. But I am of the opinion that IF it is all just in the minds of those involved, then that scenario is even more remarkable than one in which some people actually are occasionally seeing things we truly cannot understand.

Bob
post #50 of 6198
There are certainly things that cannot be explained easily. However, the problem is that, if something is not explicable, that means that the possible explanations fall into all of what we don't know. The likelihood that it is explained by aliens, as apposed to some not well understood, but completely normal, physical effect, is low.

As an example, the 'sprites and fountains' effect that occurs above the lower atmosphere above electrical storms is something that was only recently understood, but which could have easily freaked people out in the past if they saw them, and easily assigned a supernatural or extraterrestrial cause. They are really impressive looking and not something that you'd ever expect to see naturally, but they are completely normal.
post #51 of 6198
I think man has had this obsession a lot longer than the 1950's. Take the bible for example, it is filled with supernatural events and I beleive that God is described as not being of this world which by definition automatically makes him an advanced alien? The bible was printed a long time before the 1950's and by ancient people who recorded events as they thought they saw.


____________________________________________________________ ______
"Most people don't understand how fully 'reality' is what your brain
tells you it is, and if your brain tells you you were probed by a
gorgeous alien, then that's your reality, and it will seem as real to
you as any memories of real events. When it comes to the past, there is
no reality outside of our memory banks. And if our memory banks become
corrupted, then that new past is just as 'real' as the actual past would
have been. "
_________________________________________
I respectfully dissagree as well. How do you reconcile this to all of mankinds abilities to record the past, such as measurements, print and video. For example, if I am part of the audience of Jay Leno and then later I watch this on tv and that recording agrees perfectly to what I remember....this is more than just my memory of the past event. The video recording is infact tangable proof that the event did occur.
post #52 of 6198
Both Time Travel and UFO's are still a question.
However, I think extra-sensory perception may indeed exist. I site as evidence of it: my post to this same thread made on July 31st (4th post down from the top on page 2).

Bob
post #53 of 6198
Quote:
For example, if I am part of the audience of Jay Leno and then later I watch this on tv and that recording agrees perfectly to what I remember....this is more than just my memory of the past event. The video recording is infact tangable proof that the event did occur.

Unfortunately, despite the ubiquity of video recorders and cameras, no one has ever managed to record any unambiguous evidence of any of the things that we are discussing. Therefore, they are all based on human memory, which I promise you is horrible. It can be fooled very easily even in a perfectly functioning brain, and when stress or other factors are involved, human memory often isn't worth much at all.
post #54 of 6198
Quote:
The bible was printed a long time before the 1950's and by ancient people who recorded events as they thought they saw.

Exactly. And that's exactly why now instead of seeing firey wheels in the sky, people see aliens exactly as they were portrayed in those 50's movies and books. The reason that they all see in the sky what they are familiar with is because what they are seeing comes from their own imaginations, which are informed by the civilization around them. Do you really think that people in Biblical times were so stupid that if a UFO really landed and little green people really got out that they understand this well enough to report: "This vehicle came down from the sky and little green people got out"?
post #55 of 6198
Quote:
Unfortunately, despite the ubiquity of video recorders and cameras, no one has ever managed to record any unambiguous evidence of any of the things that we are discussing.

Up until his death, Allen Hynek was probably our single most reliable compiler of all the known UFO evidence (photographic or otherwise).
While he was convinced that he was unable to explain much of it (and he was a respected astronomer), he was also deeply frustrated that he could not provide any "unambiguous" evidence. Even after devoting most of his later life to the search for it.
post #56 of 6198
Quote:
The reason that they all see in the sky what they are familiar with is because what they are seeing comes from their own imaginations,

But what if some of them are actually seeing something that is not within the realm of our understanding? Then they too will report it in a way that is consistent with what they are familiar with. "It was shaped like a saucer". "It was shaped like a cigar". That is the only way any of us would be able to describe it.

Earlier last century when people of primitive island cultures in the South Pacific began seeing airplanes in the sky, they reported instead seeing giant shiny birds which moved very rapidly. The airplane was unknown to them. Birds were known to them. So all they could describe was a bird.
Would you tell us that when they witnessed seeing these objects in the sky that it was only in their imagination? Just because they described it as being something they were familiar with?
post #57 of 6198
I was speaking of things more explicit. If anyone just sees something fiery or shiney in the sky, I put no stock in that at all. People seeing something fiery or shiney in the sky today would probably describe it just like they used to, and such things are easily explicable.

But if something that really was indicative of an unambiguous alien presense was seen back then, they would be just as capable of describing it in an unambiguous manner as we would be. If they said, "A box come down from the sky, landed, opened up, and small green men got out of it", I think that would be completely within their mental capabilities. But basically, they never saw any more than people manage to get pictures of today, which are all just interesting or wierd physical phenomenon, a long way off.
post #58 of 6198
In particular today, its almost impossible for anyone to claim that they saw a UFO. There are automated sky surveys going on all the time, using very sensitive telescopes and sophisticated software to watch for local changes in the positions of objects in the sky. Anything obvious enough for a human to see well enough to claim it was anything remotely alien would clearly show up on these surveys occasionally, and be flagged in a major way by the software, since it would be a changing light source very close to the earth and would stand out like a sore thumb. I.e. if they are here, then they have to be wearing their "Romulan Cloking Devices" in order to avoid being constantly caught in these automated surveys, which means that people wouldn't be able to physically see them anyway.
post #59 of 6198
What I want to know is, how come the aliens only probe hillbillies?
post #60 of 6198
Lord. As we speak I'm trying to prepare a response to one post and now y'all (my hillybilly vernacular) have thrown out two more posts.
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