|Date:||Saturday - November 13, 2004|
|Guests:||Fred Alan Wolf|
Theoretical physicist Dr. Fred Alan Wolf discussed his speculations on the nature of time, as well as his belief that a device would be built within this century that allows travel through time.
Wolf suggested the first time traveling device would probably work by displacing time. That is, the occupant of a time machine could go forward or back in time, growing either older or younger during the journey, and then re-emerge into the present with the outside world completely unaffected. According to Wolf, one could use this time displacement machine to cure himself of disease since, by going back in time, he would grow younger and eventually reach a pre-disease state.
The traditional cinematic idea of time travel, where a person steps into a machine and arrives at some point in the future or the past is also possible, Wolf explained. However, this kind of time travel will only be possible from the moment it is invented. If a time machine were created today, Wolf hypothesized, a future time traveler could come back in time to when the machine was first constructed, but not past that point.
Dr. Wolf also talked about the paradoxes of time travel, quantum physics, parallel universes, quantum computers, and artificial intelligence.
Physicist Richard Feynman explored the strangeness of quantum behavior through the famous "Two Slit Experiment," in which light is passed through two narrow slits and detected on a photographic plate. The expected result of passing light through two slits would be the appearance of two lines. Instead, one sees a series of lines of diminishing intensity on the plate. Some physicists, including C2C guest Dr. Fred Alan Wolf, believe this experiment may point to the existence of parallel universes.
A simplified version of the "Two Slit Experiment" can be conducted at home using a darkened room, an ordinary laser pointer, a piece of paper, and a wall. Read more about the Home Test to Prove Parallel Universes.