Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Earth Day 2030: "A new eye blinked open upon the world"

From Error Theory:
Also at the United Nation news conference was Dr. Paul Ehrlich, who declared that Demi-Ra would cause mass starvation by 2040. “It will lengthen the growing season in temperate regions,” Ehrlich predicted. “The resulting increase in food production will create population growth. Soon there won’t be enough food for the increased population and everyone will die.” A reporter reminded Dr. Ehrlich that he had predicted mass starvation by the mid 1970’s, the mid 80’s, the mid 90’s, by 2010, by 2020 and by 2030. “That is not consistent enough for you?” Dr. Ehrlich parried, receiving a sharp nod of approval from Dr. Schneider.

The Lord of the Rings: A Source-Criticism Analysis

Mark Shea applies source criticism to The Lord of the Rings:
Finally, we can only guess at what the Sauron sources might have revealed, since they must have been destroyed by victors who give a wholly negative view of this doubtlessly complex, warm, human, and many-sided figure. Scholars now know, of course, that the identification of Sauron with "pure evil" is simply absurd. Indeed, many scholars have undertaken a "Quest for the Historical Sauron" and are searching the records with growing passion and urgency for any lore connected with the making of the One Ring. "It's all legendary, of course," says Dr. S. Aruman
Via The Corner.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Time Travel

Some notes on the possibility (or rather lack of proof against the possibilty) of time travel inspired by MIT's Time Traveller Convention last weekend. Some more background on the physics of time travel here and here.

One really interesting theory on why we haven't seen a time traveller if it is possible is Niven's Law - "if time travel that changes the past is possible, people will keep changing history until it reaches the one stable state -- one in which nobody ever invents a time machine, anywhere, ever. Thus, in a universe in which time travel can change the past, no time machine will ever be invented."