Monday, April 6, 2015

Bumps on the road to time travel

This blog is about the possibility of people traveling in time. My book on time travel is described elsewhere (see notice top of page). Here, in order to open conversations about time travel, I pose questions regarding the topic, only some of which are addressed in the book. I will respond to any answers or reflections on these questions provided by readers. Would a time traveler fare better traveling back in time or traveling to the future? That is, where in time, in the past or the future, would she or he have the best odds of remaining safe, operating successfully, and favorably impressing people encountered on the trip? Would time travel to some temporal destination be instantaneous—as soon the launch button is pressed the traveler would arrive at some time in the past or future—or would it be more like traveling in an incredibly fast spacecraft? If you chose the second alternative to the question just above, at what speed would you have to travel back or forward in time to get to your destination? What practical problems would a time traveler face in traveling back in time or to the future? Examples would include, how would the traveler pay for sustenance, a place to call “home,” clothing, health care, etc.? Remember that currency or valuables that are good in the present time would not necessarily be good in the past or the future. You may know a great deal about a bygone era to which you may want to travel, but what about time periods in the future? You may know much about present-time cultures and their practices, but would this knowledge be more of a burden than an asset if you went far back in time or far into the future? Behaviors and verbal pronouncements that may be correct in the present time may constitute blunders that could get you into serious trouble if you go to the distant past or the distant future. If you went far back into the past, or far into the future, would the languages you can speak in the present time be understandable to people you encounter on your trip? The cover of Time Travelers includes a synopsis of the book and a bit about me (go to click "Publications" then click the picture of the Time Travelers cover).