Would this be a time travel paradox?

OK, for the purposes of this thread time is constantly being created one Plank time after another. Meaning that the future doesn’t exist yet.

In 1986 Jane Doe creates a time machine. She can’t travel past 1986 obviously as it doesn’t exist yet.

OK, now, in 2016 she decided to travel back to 1986. From past Jane’s perspective 2016 doesn’t exit yet, but from present Jane’s it does. So it appears that the future simultaneously exists and doesn’t exist at the same time.

So, is this a paradox, or is there another way of looking at it where it isn’t a paradox at all?

Yes it’s a paradox. I told you that next week.

Hahhahaha :slight_smile:

You get in trouble when you hit the word “yet.” That implies a sort of “time space” into which time units are being created one at a…uh…time.

There’s not enough information to know what would happen here. I mean, yes, it’s a paradox, because time travel into the past is always a paradox: there are now two versions of the past: one containing the future traveller’s experiences, one not. You don’t have to go on a patricidal murder spree or anything.

But the root of your question depends on the part you didn’t answer:what happens to “time units” as they become the past? If there’s a big metaphorical box of them somewhere (so that from 2016, the time unit of 1986 still “exists”), and you’re jumping to it, than the 1986 you’re going to clearly isn’t the same one you lived through before. In this “time space” the box of expired units exists, and in the old one it didn’t. So it’s probably not just a paradox, but one resolved by a multi-world explanation.

Alternatively, you can argue that travel through the “time space” container to a previous point effectively ‘resets’ that point, and you’d be back where you were (although still with an extra “you” creating a paradox) with the future not existing yet. From the “container” side, all times exist, but from the “world” side, time units in the future are inaccessible/nonexistent.

Luckily (and as you can tell from my username, I’m an expert at this), your whole explanation is wrong and spacetime is fully extant at all times, although travel along certain dimensions is limited to a single direction for most particle types. The Dromidians set it up that way, and anybody that messes with them ceases to exist.

There are some things I want to respond to, but first, I Googled “Dromidians” and got nothing. What sci-fi show or book are they from?

Your assumption is based on the idea of 2016 Jane being a part of the future in 1986. Is that correct? However, she is not in 2016 when she is in 1986. She is in the present at that time. The paradox is that there will be two Janes in 1986, one 30 years older than the other. But I don’t see the future and the past existing at the same time in that scenario.

2016 Jane certainly wouldn’t think she was in the future in 1986 because the first thing you do after you time travel is to go out and buy a newspaper to see what day it is. And that may finally explain why time travel into the future is not possible, because there won’t be any more newspapers before long.

It’s the nickname for people from Andromeda; we don’t meet them until

Well, if we’re going to bring sci-fi races into this, I’m guessing you and TimeWinder must be Vorlons since you speak in riddles and give incomplete information.

Yes and no.

If you’ve really destroyed the future by going back, then there’s no paradox except for having two Janes. No matter what you do, you’re not creating a paradox with something that doesn’t exist. If Jane kills her grandmother, she just continues to live on in her grandmother’s time, knowing that everything in the future has been eliminated anyway.

And here’s the no part of my answer: If time travel destroys the future, then what is the only time line that will not be continuously destroyed and re-created? That’s right… the time line with no time travel. So… by making time travel paradox-free, you’ve also ensured that the only timeline that will last is one with no time travel. :smack:

Still, all kinds of things will happen in all of those unstable timelines that never really existed.

But we could if we wanted to right? My maternal grandfather was the hardest, scariest man I ever met, and while I wouldn’t want to kill him it would be nice to punch him in the stomach. And run.

Or if you believe that time travel is possible but changing the past is not then the past that exists would already have the future you in it before you time traveled. But then that would mean that the future already exists.

I thought about ways to stick within the confines of time being created a moment at a time, and yet not allow 1986 Jane to go to 2016, but allow 2016 Jane to go to 1986. But they were kind of convoluted and silly. Like, maybe the future exists as possibilities, and when you make a decision it solidifies into an actuality (I’m sure some scientist or sci-fi writer came up with that decades before). Or maybe instead of one moment being added to the next like 12345… instead each moment is duplicated and then another is added, like
And of course there’s also time travel isn’t possible and/or time doesn’t work as laid out in the OP.

So going back in time would be a one way ticket and you couldn’t use the machine to get home?

I’m still curious what book/novel/TV show/movie this comes from.

If time is constantly being created so that the future doesn’t exist yet, then a 2016 Jane going back to 1986 would mean you would have 1986 Jane who can’t go to 2016 because it doesn’t exist yet. But you would also have a 2016 Jane in 1986 at the same time.

Uhm, 2016 Jane wouldn’t think she’s in the future if she traveled back to 1986. She would be 30 years in the past. :confused:

Do you mean that just going back in time alters time time line enough that the future you came from gets destroyed and a new one takes it place?

There was a poster who had as his tag something to the effect of, “Of course,” said my grandfather as he stepped out of the time machine, “there’s no paradox if I kill you.”

If time travel is possible, then time probably needs to be regarded as a dimension; it becomes as absurd and meaningless to say "the future doesn’t exist yet’ as it would be to say “30 miles west of here doesn’t exist here”.

Of course 30 miles west of here doesn’t exist here. It exists 30 miles west of here.

Of course the future doesn’t exist now. It exists in the future.