Time’s a Wastin’

Hello Grimericans! What can I say? It’s been a fun year for me. Not that you would know because as I noticed a few weeks ago, I have only published one single, solitary blog post this year! That is unacceptable to Darren, Graham, myself and of course all three of my regular readers (the latter parties excluded). And as 2016 is rapidly coming to a close, with only a few hours left before the proverbial and literal ball drops, I am frantically researching the topic of… I don’t know. I have so many ideas for posts, but all topics on my list would require more research than I have time for. Time for… Time… Time travel! I’ve got it! I will simply construct a device that will allow me to travel back into history and provide me with the adequate time needed to satisfactorily write a well laid, thought provoking article. Heck! Why stop at just one?! I can write a whole year’s worth of blog posts. Well that’s taken care of. I’ll just do that. No problem. Now if I remember correctly from a previous post I wrote on time travel, I’m going to need a safe word in case I run into myself and I need to warn past me of something… I would have to already have had to come up with it, that way, past-me would know it… Damn… this time travel stuff is confusing. Maybe I can afford a little time to research what could go wrong if I were to go back into the annals of 2016 and pop out a few posts. What am I saying? I have all the time in the world. Let’s see. The first thing I would have to worry about is obviously the…

 

 

The Butterfly Effect

 

Sweet, I love this movie! Amy Smart all the way! Am I right?! But now that I think about it, things didn’t go too well for good ol’ Aston in the end there; did it? Actually, I don’t remember. That movie had like four different alternative endings. I’m sure one of them had to be good. But okay, the butterfly effect. That’s the one that if you were to hypothetically travel back into time and accidentally (or purposefully, you demented bastard) kill a butterfly, then that seemingly little act can have a huge effects and a cascade of consequences that change history as the time traveler would have known it. If one were to dig more deeply into the subject, you would find that the butterfly effect is part of Chaos Theory which has its place in mathematics. Now since I have a tendency to write way more than I should and always fear that I lose readers halfway through my posts, I will not start talking about math. I will let the words of Edward Lorenz, who coined the term “butterfly effect” and was the driving force of developing chaos theory, summarized it as:

 

Chaos: When the present determines the future, but the approximate present does not approximately determine the future.

 

 

So I think what this is saying is that I need to avoid butterflies at all costs. Now, without hurting your head or mine (mostly mine), we’ll move on to:

 

 

The Grandfather Paradox

 

Probably the second best well known time travel paradox. It goes, for those of you who don’t know, if you were to travel back in time to kill your own grandfather, for whatever reason, let’s say you just didn’t like the cut of his jib, upon completion of this morbid deed, you would cease to have ever existed and therefore you couldn’t have traveled back in time and killed your grandfather for his smug attitude and thus, with you not killing him, you were eventually born and are able to travel back in time and kill your grandfather for his holier than thou demeanor, but in doing so, you again seal your nonexistent fate meaning… you see why this is a paradox, right? Now scientists love trying to come up with solutions to these paradoxes and some theoretical physicists have come up with a few ideas on how this situation could pan out. But we’ll get to those in due time. For now, I think for my purposes, all I need to take away from this is to stay away from my grandfather, who was a really nice man anyway and I assure you that there is no bone in my body that would wish that kind-hearted soul ill will, even if he did always cheat at cribbage. So now onto…

 

 

The Bootstrap Paradox

 

Another well-known time travel paradox, the bootstrap paradox gets its name from the old phrase, “to pull oneself up by their own bootstraps” which basically means to improves one’s own situation by one’s own efforts. It makes the mind conjure up rather odd imagery of trying to accomplish this impossible task. And although the origin of the saying is unknown, at least as far as my quick research determined, I’ve read that the term was popularized by science fiction writer Robert A. Heinlein, either by or from his book “By His Bootstraps” (Full PDF here) As I am on a deadline, (at least until I figure out whether or not I should time travel) I haven’t had a chance to read it yet, but I am sure I will, given the time (LOL). As for the paradox itself, it goes something like this: Let’s say that in my quest to travel back into 2016 and try and get a whole year’s worth of articles out, to save even more time, I simply give my past-self all of the blog posts at once. My past-self then publishes them and claim they are of his own creation. Then, when past-me gets to the point on the timeline where current me is, he travels back in time to give his past-him the posts to publish. The paradox part is: where did the original information come from? Maybe that wasn’t the best example, I was just trying to tie it in with my current attempts to transverse time and space. The best example that I read went like this: “What if a time traveler went back in time and taught Einstein the theory of relativity before travelling back to his own time. Einstein claims it’s his own work, and over the following decades the theory is published countless times until a copy of it eventually ends up in the hands of the original time traveler who then takes it back to Einstein, begging the question ‘where did the theory originate’. We cannot say that it came from the time traveler as he learned it from Einstein, but we also cannot say that it is from Einstein, since he was taught it by the time traveler. Who, then, discovered the theory of relativity?” Yep. Try to wrap your mind around that. Maybe this whole, traveling back in time isn’t such a great idea. Especially with things like…

 

 

The Predestination Paradox

 

Well this one is disheartening to my current goals. It is also a popular one for movies. It basically goes that anyone who tries to travel back in time to change history will, by their actions, causes the event that they are trying to prevent to actually occur. The time traveler (me, in this case) would be forever entrapped in a “temporal causality loop” in which the event I’m trying to prevent (being lazy and not writing blogs for 2016) is actually caused by me traveling back in time trying to prevent it. Now there are a few “solutions” to this and the others but I’m starting to think those might have to be a post unto themselves. But for now, it would seem that this paradox says that, “the past is the past, man. Leave it alone.” Damn, I hate this paradox’s casual attitude! Ya know what? I think that I’m thinking too small with this blog post thing, if I’m going back in time, I might as well do it for the good of humanity, right?! I could prevent some horrible disasters, maybe even save some lives! Hell, I could kill Hitler! Except for, of course the…

 

 

Let’s Kill Hitler Paradox

 

Oh my god! I just can’t win, can I? I can’t even go back and prevent horrible events from occurring! Damn it! The “Let’s Kill Hitler Paradox” says that by traveling back in time and killing the führer, I would erase any reason for me to go back in time in the first place. Everything that Hitler did wouldn’t have happened and would have changed the world, and one of those changes would be not giving me a reason to travel back and put one in his little mustache wearing skull. So if there is no reason to go back, then I don’t, and if I don’t go back, then I couldn’t kill him, that would mean that all of the horrible things he did happend and there is a reason to go back, and if there is a reason to go back, then I do go back and I kill him and… UGH! I’m starting to think this isn’t worth it. Is there any way that I can go back and not cause some mind f*#king effect? Nope, because of the…

 

 

Timeline Corruption Hypothesis

 

Well this one pretty much seals it and dashes my dreams of a 2016 full of awesome blog posts. The timeline corruption hypothesis states that any time travel will result in unavoidable changes to history. I liken it to the observer effect where a subject (in this case, the past) will alter its behavior by being observed. Anything I would do in the past, including the mere act of observing it, would change it. And that’s not a risk that I, for one, am willing to take. I guess all I can do now is throw away this useless time machine and simply make a conservative effort to my future posts here in Grimerica. Who knows what would have happened if I went back in time. Hell, Trump could have won the presidency. Lol. Like that would have ever happened. Well, maybe I’ll just take a peek…

 

 

“Great Scott!”

OH SHIT! Sorry America! I promise I won’t do that again. I didn’t even give myself the posts I had. I guess it was predestined for me not to put those out in 2016. I’ll guess they’ll just have to wait until next year. Seriously though America, sorry. Well I guess there’s nothing left for me to say except that that’s it for me Grimerica. Have a happy New Year and don’t forget to stay classy!

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One comment

  1. Hector Quinones says:

    You guys are awesome. Please try to interview Geordie Rose from dwave.

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