Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Hug a Theoretical Physicist Today! (8,22.07)

In particular, look for Amos Ori at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa and
plant a wet one on his cheek. Back on the 13th of March I wrote in "Drat! Those Darn Physicists! "
how a Brian Greene, author of the Elegant Universe, took all the fun out of the one-day hope of time travel. Wincing at the idea of a guy with a pocket-protector harpooning that dream and slaughtering it, I thought, "Oh well... at least there is still Dickens!" and included a list of some of my favorite time travel books.

While I don't have the mind of a scientist, merely that of a dreamer, I had a very hard time
accepting he and his cronies were correct. On that day I wrote,
"Lest a dream be lost - I
think that next to last sentence is the key here: "brush up right at the edge of physics AS
WE UNDERSTAND IT." Our minds are so infinitesimally small compared to the Universe and
the Mighty God who created it. The fact that we can conceptualize a tesseract now, at
this time in our feeble mental development, should give us hope in the future of somehow understanding ways to use that concept. Imagination is the key to exploration - as long as we can imagine that there are possibilities too big for our little minds to grasp - and yet reach beyond limitation anyway - we may find that the impossible turns out not to be so impossible after all."

Apparently some physicists ARE still dreamers... and Amos Ori believes he has found a
cosmic loop hole. Our understanding is so very small, but growing all the time. I'm glad
that someone "saw" that time travel doesn't necessarily require some exotic matter as an ingredient. According to LiveScience's review of Ori's article for the prestigious Physical Review:

Ori's latest research suggests time machines are possible without exotic matter,
eliminating a barrier to time travel. His work begins with a donut-shaped hole enveloped
within a sphere of normal matter.

"We're talking about these closed loops of time, and the simplest kind of closed loops are
circles, which is why we have this ring-shaped hole," Ori explained.
Inside this donut-shaped vacuum, space-time could get bent upon itself using focused
gravitational fields to form a closed time-like curve. To go back in time, a traveler would
race around inside the donut, going further back into the past with each lap.

"The machine is space-time itself," Ori said. "If we were to create an area with a warp like
this in space that would enable time lines to close on themselves, it might enable future
generations to return to visit our time."

For an interesting little read, check out this article entitled, "A Guide to The Realm Of
Temporal Physics"
By Alastair Roberts. It's from a site, Fluid Link, that is based on UK's Dr. Who. :) Don't you just love sci-fi?

Albert Einstein said, "Imagination is more important than knowledge..." and in some ways
he is right. Imagination stretches us, imagination is what leads to progress and enthuses us to work toward creating that which we have dreamed up.

George Bernard Shaw in his wisdom declared, "Imagination is the beginning of creation.
You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine and at last you create what you
will." He also said this, which I particularly like, ""You see things; and you say, "Why?" But
I dream things that never were; and I say, "Why not?""

In honor of physicists with imagination... "Star Trek - Time Warp"

And later, I will toast Ori with a glass of non-alcoholic White Zinfandel for not letting
dreams die. :)

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