Rules for Time Travelers | Cosmic Variance | Discover Magazine
This is pretty awesome. It's a plain-English explanation of what rules should have to apply to any literary use of time travel, given what we know about space-time. "Time travel isn’t magic; it may or may not be allowed by the laws of physics — we don’t know them well enough to be sure — but we do know enough to say that if time travel were possible, certain rules would have to be obeyed." I was, of course, reading these rules and thinking of LOST, which, by my count, seems to play by all the rules expect maybe number three (but, in their defense, if you don't have some visual cue to the audience that time travel just happened, how would they ever know? I understand that it would happen in the real world, but you kind of need the flashing light as a storytelling device). Great read.
0. There are no paradoxes. 1. Traveling into the future is easy. 2. Traveling into the past is hard — but maybe not impossible. 3. Traveling through time is like traveling through space. 4. Things that travel together, age together. 5. Black holes are not time machines. 6. If something happened, it happened. 7. There is no meta-time. 8. You can’t travel back to before the time machine was built. 9. Unless you go to a parallel universe. 10. And even then, your old universe is still there.
Like Rule 0.
I love how smart everyone wants to act in the comments.Io9 2008 Year In Review: Best Science Fiction Books of 2008
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