It seems that you're using an outdated browser. Some things may not work as they should (or don't work at all).
We suggest you upgrade newer and better browser like: Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer or Opera

×
avatar
anjohl: MOST people who "believe" in psychic powers tend to say it derives from some mystical source.

Mystical being another word for 'buggered if we know'. It's not exactly a term that has any relevance to anything in science.
But from a scientific standpoint something must be 'grabbed' from the future in order for the psychic to see it. So either the psychic's mind travels into the future then back again, or images from the future simply travel back to the psychic at random.
Or these 'mystical forces' are travelling around in time like a middle-aged couple adding to their rather comprehensive holiday slide show. Whatever the case, something is taking something from the future and bringing it back in time.
avatar
anjohl: MOST people who "believe" in psychic powers tend to say it derives from some mystical source.
avatar
Navagon: Mystical being another word for 'buggered if we know'. It's not exactly a term that has any relevance to anything in science.
But from a scientific standpoint something must be 'grabbed' from the future in order for the psychic to see it. So either the psychic's mind travels into the future then back again, or images from the future simply travel back to the psychic at random.
Or these 'mystical forces' are travelling around in time like a middle-aged couple adding to their rather comprehensive holiday slide show. Whatever the case, something is taking something from the future and bringing it back in time.

I don't really get your point here, are you still trying to goad me into a shit-slinging contest about time travel? I have never read or seen any piece of fiction revolving around psychic power that had *anything* to do with time travel.
avatar
anjohl: I don't really get your point here, are you still trying to goad me into a shit-slinging contest about time travel? I have never read or seen any piece of fiction revolving around psychic power that had *anything* to do with time travel.

I'm not saying there has ever been a stated connection between the two in fiction. What I'm saying is that for it to work in practise, something would have to be travelling back in time - which is impossible.
avatar
Wishbone: Larry Niven writes the most believeable "alien" aliens I've come across. Both physically and psychologically, they are radically different from humans.
avatar
NamelessFragger: Sounds like someone whose works I might want to check out. Got any recommendations?

Gosh, too many to list, really. His "Known Space" universe is my favourite sci-fi setting, but it spans some 40 books and several hundred years of future history, so it's hard to say where to start. The first of his novels that I read was "Ringworld", so I'll definitely recommend that. Also, it's not essential that the various books are read in any particular order (other than the ones collected in specific series, like Ringworld), but books that take place later in his future history naturally refers occasionally to events in the past. However, since they haven't been written in chronological order, this isn't too much of a problem.
He's also got some excellent books that are not set in the Known Space universe. I highly recommend "The Mote In God's Eye" and "The Legacy Of Heorot", for settings including aliens.
Btw, love the Fwiffo avatar ;-)
avatar
Navagon: something would have to be travelling back in time - which is impossible.

Something we can't do would be a better phrase, after all for a long time it was impossible to break the sound barrier or even do powered flight
avatar
Navagon: something would have to be travelling back in time - which is impossible.
avatar
Aliasalpha: Something we can't do would be a better phrase, after all for a long time it was impossible to break the sound barrier or even do powered flight

For it to be possible, time would have to be more than a human concept.
avatar
Wishbone: That depends on which Universe model you apply. If you assume a single universe, then yes, you'll have paradoxes galore. However, if you assume a multiverse, branching at each quantum fluctuation (you know, if there is a decision to be made, all outcomes are played out in separate parallel universes), then travelling back in time will merely force you to switch "tracks", so to speak.

Wishbone now why did you go and get Quantum Physics and String Theory involved....
avatar
Wishbone: That depends on which Universe model you apply. If you assume a single universe, then yes, you'll have paradoxes galore. However, if you assume a multiverse, branching at each quantum fluctuation (you know, if there is a decision to be made, all outcomes are played out in separate parallel universes), then travelling back in time will merely force you to switch "tracks", so to speak.
avatar
Starkrun: Wishbone now why did you go and get Quantum Physics and String Theory involved....

Well, it makes for a much more interesting discussion, doesn't it? Also, I was not aware that string theory figured into it anywhere. I've read a few books on quantum mechanics but not string theory.
Just did a quick scan of Wikipedia. I see why you brought that into it now. Interesting. I'll have to find some more material on that.
avatar
anjohl: I'm not saying there has ever been a stated connection between the two in fiction. What I'm saying is that for it to work in practise, something would have to be travelling back in time - which is impossible.
avatar
Navagon: How's that now? If we are arguing about how a fictional ability can work, there's no reason to think that another fictional construct is involved. If psychic ability was all of a sudden discovered, I doubt anyone would hypothesize that it had something to do with time travel. That's a terrible assumption.
avatar
Wishbone: Well, it makes for a much more interesting discussion, doesn't it? Also, I was not aware that string theory figured into it anywhere. I've read a few books on quantum mechanics but not string theory.
Just did a quick scan of Wikipedia. I see why you brought that into it now. Interesting. I'll have to find some more material on that.

Well, Quantum physics and String theory et al are all irrelevant, since they are unprovable theories created by far too enthusiastic and creative people. We need a new branch of categorization, just so people use the terms properly. For example, the FACTUAL existance of gravity, evolution, or inertia would be the top tier. The THEORETICAL existance of human climate impact/global warming, and the theory of viruses would be the second tier. Te WILD GUESSES of quantum physics, string theory, god, mohammed, santa claus, the talking snake, the ilumminati, aliens, other dimensions, ghosts, etc would be the bottom barrel, all of them guesses, nothing more than human nature coming up with a creative way to incorporate an idea into a paradigm.
It's all creative psuedo science. The "dark fog" has been pushed back by technology, and there really isn't that much more to learn. Science now encapsulates so much, particularly when it comes to pretty much anything ecological or biological (Save the brain), that there really arn't any giant new fields to discover outside astrophysics and consciousness.
Of course, some of our theories and assumptions will be overturned due to shaky science. IE, the best way to wash a car isn't a Rube Goldberg Machine, but it get's the job done. One day, some of our science will turn out to be the equivilent of a Rube Goldberg Machine. For example, a solution might appear to give the correct answer, but the cause we interpret might be a false conclusion.
People have this mythological construct of "progress" that really doens't exist. Fundamentally, our science/culture/organization hasn't changed much since we created the printing press, and only slightly more from the creation of the wheel. Progress is a human construct, like time travel, that is a convenient and comforting way of assimilating ideas into our ways of thinking and existing paradigms. The reality is that humanity is likely near it's apex of knowledge.
Post edited October 31, 2009 by anjohl