Ask the 'time traveller from the future'

In this thread in GQ, I opined that material generated by self-proclaimed time-traveller John Titor was unimaginative.

In this thread, we will determine whether I can actually do any better myself; I will assert that I am a time traveller from the year 2068 and I will attempt to support this assertion by answering your questions…

Fire away.

how’s that ‘food in pill form’ working out for ya?


World Series.

How 'bout it?

How did you time travel?

Can you go back?

Do you know me?

Are you me?

How do you know you’re not insane?

Compact food concentrate products have been tried numerous times, but they have repeatedly failed to make a significant impact to the average daily diet; they have found use in times of emergency and disaster and they are still available, but except for a few extremists, most people treat them as a novelty, an emergency backup, or a very occasional meal substitute when they are on the move, working or otherwise unable to stop for a proper meal. in 2068, People enjoy eating at least as much as in your time, possibly more, given the range of new ingredients we have.

I’ll go ahead and ask you the questions that so far Mr. Titor has declined to answer. If he does end up answering, I’ll see whose response is the more believable.

Who wins the next presidential election?

Who wins the next Super Bowl?

What is the nature of the Internet and computing technology in 2056?

What has been the biggest medical breakthrough between now and 2056?

Has there been any breakthroughs in the area of string theory, and if so, what are they? (A legit time traveler should definitely know the answer to this one.)

What has been the biggest change in professional sports between now and 2056?

What has been the biggest change in entertainment technology between now and 2056?

What is a technology that is in commonplace use in 2056 that no one is even contemplating of inventing today? (There’s a good reason for asking this question…no one contemplated DVDs, the World Wide Web, or cellular phones fifty-three years ago.)

Obviously I did a cut and paste from where I asked Mr. Titor those questions. Change the year 2056 to 2068 where appropriate.

Is weed legal?

**Jonathan Chance: ** If you’re asking me to predict the outcome of various sporting events that exist in your future, I’m afraid I can’t really help, but only because sport and sporting history isn’t very popular in my community - many of your sports are still played in 2068 (although I understand that the playing rules have evolved for some of them).

**Tusculan: ** Your last question is an interesting philosophical one, but apart from the remains of my insertion vehicle (which does not actually contain any functional components - those were left behind (behind?) in 2068) and certainly nothing that couldn’t be manufactured by your current technologies, there is little that I can offer in the way of tangible evidence; I could submit myself to medical tests which would, I think even in this age, show some interesting anomalies in my physiological makeup, but I think you’ll understand my reluctance to hand myself over to be examined.

I’m not you and I don’t know you.

I can’t go back - this was a one-way trip for me.

Do you have Three Sea Shells in your bathroom? And if so what are they used for?

I should probably explain a few things about who and what I am; the great minds that are responsible for the apparatus that sent me back to your time are indispensible in their fields and it is most unlikely that they would consider a one-way trip into the past; I was chosen for the task on the simple basis of my ability to adapt, cope and improvise and that I was expendable. I don’t know anything about the detailed workings of the time insertion apparatus - very few people do, and what little I have heard about it could well be pure speculation or even misinformation.

Your first female president, at least I think so, someone called Mahon? Something like that.

No idea - sorry.

Needless to say, computers got generally smaller and more powerful, but this started to level out in the thirties - in terms of the human interface, most interaction is voice-based and works really well, although the machines aren’t truly intelligent and when it goes wrong the results can be very amusing.

This is a tricky one because quite a lot of technological advances have been made. High-resolution medical scanning has been brought to a high state of art, but the scanners are also capable of precise, non-intrusive destruction of small areas of tissue or other material, such as arterial plaque; intrusive surgery is much less commonplace than it was(is?) in your time. Advanced simulations (with our computers, we can simulate living systems (or parts of them) right down to the atomic level now(then?)) have made for huge leaps in pharmaceutical design and trial. People still die of disease though because all this advanced stuff is costly.

As I said, I’m just the test subject. I don’t know the answer to this question.

In my particular community, the biggest change has been a gradual decline in interest.

If you’re thinking that some kind of immersive VR has taken over, you’ll be wrong; many of our entertainments would actually be considered archaic in your time - the manufacture and use of musical instruments (often purely acoustic ones) is a popular pastime. I myself prefer working in the communal garden unit (I can earn extra food privileges this way). Attitudes toward recreational sex and use of chemicals have waxed, waned and mutated across the decades and are currently (in 2069 that is) quite liberal - many people in your time would find them distressingly permissive.

It isn’t commonplace yet, but we have time travel.

Have you tried to kill your own grandfather? What will happen if you do?

Who will make the next post after you reply to this?

That isn’t something I intend to try anytime soon.

It clearly isn’t possible though; I was born, therefore my grandfather was not killed before the conception of my father; were I to try to kill my grandfather, either some set of circumstances would (already have) prevent me, or I would succeed and it would have no effect on me (vindicating what I believe is called the ‘multiple timelines theory’)

Does Dick Clark still look the same?

Who’s next - Paul or Ringo?

Where are the flying cars?

If you can transport through time, can you transport through space in the same way?


The next Beatle to die? Paul McCartney. I’m not going to say when.

vehicular transport is very different in 2068 - there are relatively few privately-owned vehicles and many people simply do not travel very far very often (there is not much reason to).

Not in the same way, no (although I understand that my insertion into 1998 required a certain degree of incidental spatial translation) - I’m not sure how they worked it out, but I can tell you it was a hard landing - there were rumours about test subject prior to myself. I’m not sure what era they were inserted into, if the rumours are true at all.

Has anyone invented a better mousetrap yet? And if so, what happened to his door?

I miss my family and my life at home; everything here is so… difficult - not that the work is any harder, indeed I had to work very much harder back in 2068; I do my best, but the language and culture here is quite alien to me; the air smells wrong and I feel as if I am constantly in grave danger.

The people I know and most care for don’t exist yet.

I had no choice about coming back.

Has world ignorance been eradicated yet?

Is virtual sex all it’s cracked up to be?

Are your telekinetic monkey masters as nice to you as they seem to be to us right now?