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Brief clip of me talking about the difference between time travel and space travel, and the significance of that difference for science fiction, in case this is of interest. NPR host Moira Gunn, former Analog editor Stan Schmidt, and Tor editor David Hartwell also on hand.

 

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Since everything is in motion, you'd have to travel in space to travel through time. Earth isn't where it was six months ago, for example.

(Sorry, that's a pet peeve of mine)
 

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CEMartin2 said:
Since everything is in motion, you'd have to travel in space to travel through time. Earth isn't where it was six months ago, for example.

(Sorry, that's a pet peeve of mine)
Yes, that's of course technically right. But I think that's small potatoes in comparison to the fundamental impossibility of time travel itself. Put otherwise - if time travel were possible, then I think we could safely assume that the spatial problems would be taken care of (and encompassed in the time travel device).
 

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CEMartin2 said:
Since everything is in motion, you'd have to travel in space to travel through time. Earth isn't where it was six months ago, for example.

(Sorry, that's a pet peeve of mine)
<3

+1

Unfortunately, the stories would be really short if this wasn't accounted for, but it would be nice to see just a one-line explanation sometimes.
 

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CEMartin2 said:
Since everything is in motion, you'd have to travel in space to travel through time. Earth isn't where it was six months ago, for example.

(Sorry, that's a pet peeve of mine)
As Einstein pointed out, it's all relative.
 

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CEMartin2 said:
Since everything is in motion, you'd have to travel in space to travel through time. Earth isn't where it was six months ago, for example.

(Sorry, that's a pet peeve of mine)
How do you know that everything around us isn't spinning in such a way as to make it appear as though we are traveling through space? 8)
 

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vrabinec said:
How do you know that everything around us isn't spinning in such a way as to make it appear as though we are traveling through space? 8)
I totally wanted to do a short story like that years ago, but couldn't find enough research stuff to make it work. Now that we have the internet, I may have to brush off those 20 year old notes- if I still have them.
 

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CEMartin2 said:
I totally wanted to do a short story like that years ago, but couldn't find enough research stuff to make it work. Now that we have the internet, I may have to brush off those 20 year old notes- if I still have them.
That, put simply, is what Einstein's general and special theories discuss. Each framework of observation is a valid framework.

The simplest example would be a traveler in a moving space ship. Someone in a stationary space ship would watch him go by, and think, 'that space ship is moving.' But from the first space ship's perspective, the stationary ship is the one that's moving. And each has a valid case.

Add in the framework of the universe, and acceleration, and the math gets a whole lot more complicated, but the concept remains the same. In Einstein's world, it's valid to look at the universe from the framework of a stationary earth.

And since time-travel is theoretical, and authors get to make up the rules, within reason, it would be simple to add a rule that all time travel occurs within the local stationary framework. So you wouldn't face the problem of going two days back in time and popping up in space where the earth was two days ago. (Moving not only in its orbit, but also taking into account the motion of our solar system within the galaxy, and our galaxy within the universe (a speed of about a 1000 kilometers per second.))
 

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CEMartin2 said:
I totally wanted to do a short story like that years ago, but couldn't find enough research stuff to make it work. Now that we have the internet, I may have to brush off those 20 year old notes- if I still have them.
I think that this story would have to include a scene where Galileo expresses his regret to the Catholic Church.
 

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Rob May said:
I think that this story would have to include a scene where Galileo expresses his regret to the Catholic Church.
Which, the "Yet still it moves"? Or some kind of sincere regret?
 
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