Our perception of time - Deepstash

Our perception of time

The internet changed our perception of time: We're looking at the past on our video screens, and it's just as clear as something in the present, making it feel like an unending present.

Time travel is also a powerful way to imagine what the future might bring. Time travel allows us to explore the consequences of our worst tendencies.

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Time is difficult to explain. When looking for a dictionary explanation, time is described as "the general term for the experience of duration." But what is duration?

We have contradictory ways of speaking about time. We think of time as a quantity. It is something we waste, spend, or save. We also think of time as a medium we are passing through every day.

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Scientists and time travel

Over 50 scientific papers are published a year on the idea of time travel. Even though they will probably never solve the problem of time travel, they still love to talk about wormholes and dark matter.

Einstein, with his theory of relativity, spoke of time as a fourth dimension. After that, Hermann Minkowski said that we should talk about space and time as a union of the two, spacetime, where the future already exists, and the past still exists. Today we're comfortable talking about time as a fourth dimension.

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Time travel is fascinating

One of the reasons we continue to be so fascinated with time travel is that we can go back and undo our mistakes. Then we also have a curiosity about the future.

However, every time travel story is about death. The idea of time travel is ultimately about our desire to defeat death.

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The idea of time travel

The idea of time travel is a very recent idea that starts with H.G. Wells's 1895 novel, The Time Machine. After that, we find the concept in American science fiction, or in modernist literature - each twisting time in new ways, to explore the unpredictability of memory.

Stephen Hawking also played with the idea of time travel. He proposed the idea that it can't happen because it didn't happen.

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Time Travel

The Science Fiction’s holy grail, Time Travel has been a popular topic in various books, movies and TV series for decades.

Time Travel is the ability to ‘travel’ between two different points of time, mostly involving a vehicle of some sort, which is able to arrive in the past or future.

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Absolute time does not exist

Time moves slower the closer you are to Earth. In his theory of general relativity, Einstein explained that the gravity of a large mass, like Earth, distorts the space and time around it.

In 2010, researchers placed two precise atomic clocks, one 33 centimetres higher than the other. Time moved slower for the clock closer to Earth. This confirmed that absolute time does not exist.

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Science fiction in the 1700s

Science fiction emerged about 300 years ago when science made great strides. Authors tried to understand their world by imagining a possible future.

Gulliver's Travels is the earliest science fiction. This satirical 1726 travel narrative is considered to be a precursor of the modern science fiction novel. Lemuel Gulliver encounters utopian and dystopian societies during his voyages. The novel describes scientists on islands whose experiments are pointless.

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