A couple of mornings ago, I was sitting in the bathroom before work reading various websites and articles. One that particularly caught my attention was someone ranting about the intricacies of time travel. To wit; if one were actually able to build a time machine, he posited that just going back in time wasn’t the most difficult issue. What was, in his opinion, was the fact that if one were able to travel in time, one had to take into consideration not only the passage of time, but movement as well. Movement, in this case meaning, the movement of celestial objects, and their relation to one another as time marches invariably on.
If you think back to movies like ‘The Time Machine‘, [the remake of 2002] it shows Alexander Hartigan’s machine creating a ‘bubble’ that resides outside of the normal flow of time, either going forwards, or backwards. What doesn’t seem to be taken into consideration is the movement of the earth, considering that it rotates on it’s axis, and it moves within the solar system and the universe as well. The movie glosses over this fact, instead showing the time bubble remaining static as the passage of the years and centuries goes on around him. Of course the other thing is, nothing gets built upon the spot where his machine is moving, as if the screenwriter conveniently forgot or ignored that issue. To advance the story, he needed a mostly unobstructed view, so he could observe the dresses in the window across the street being rapidly moved higher and higher on the model’s legs to show how progressive life was becoming as time moved on.
Honestly, when I was watching the movie the first time (and the second and so on) it never occurred to me that this was an issue. Apparently it occurred to someone else, and they decided to write about it. I’m rather glad they did. It made me think, and then I could share it here.