Thursday, November 16, 2006

once more, with feeling

if you had the chance, what would you do over?

i'm not talking about wistful regrets or a rhetorical "gee whiz..."

knowing what you know now, knowing what you did and what happened because of it...what would you change?
If his experiment with splitting photons actually works, says University of Washington physicist John Cramer, the next step will be to test for quantum "retrocausality."

That's science talk for saying he hopes to find evidence of a photon going backward in time.

Roughly put, Cramer is talking about the subatomic equivalent of arriving at the train station before you've left home, of winning the lottery before you've bought the ticket, of graduating from high school before you've been born.
c'mon, you know you've done it at some point in your life. made a wrong turn into the path of a bad relationship. drank out of the wrong bottle. slept with the wrong person.

okay, they're all the right person, but sometimes at the wrong time.

anyway, here's this guy who says he can make photons defy conventional wisdom on the linearity of time. next thing you know people will be walking around with i-time pods, going back and doing things over willy nilly. what a fabulous free-for-all that would be.

your boss didn't like you being late for work? go back and do that morning quickie a little quicker. you think the leader of the free world is a low-IQ loser? go back and slip some rat poison into his frat party cocaine. you have a problem with the ethics of murder? go back and re-write some religious dogma.

and it's all good, because if people don't like what you've done, they can go back and re-do it. the world will be a continually changing, time-warping, flux capacitating party.

and if you don't like everyone traveling back and forth, messing up the decor in your waterfront go back and take out the photon-splitting scientist.

win win.

i've gotten carried away again, haven't i. no problem.

control+z. undo typing.

hey, check this out. some guy at the university of washington thinks he can make photons travel back in time. what an interesting concept.

you know, if you had the chance...what would you do over?


Bon said...

i've spent days thinking how to respond to your question, days i tell you.

mostly, i'll leave things where they lay. but the things i'd like to re-do or edit, well they're just to big to mention out loud.

spaceneedl said...

well, that's the thing about our current state of technology...we don't really get to hit the do-over button. yet.

but it's worth thinking about (in moderation), ain't it?

Bon said...

it just that i'd like to think i'm perfectly content with the way i've done things so far. i know i've misplayed a few cards along the way but i conveniently convince myself that all in all, everything's coo.

when you add the possibility of an edit that tends to make one question her actions.

Anonymous said...

I hate to say it, but the first thing that comes to mind is the college days. Often times I've looked back at those 4 years as the best in my life, and for some stupid reason, I would love to be back there sans naivity.

And those 4 perfect years would be drastically different, but somehow I think it could only be more perfect.