Nova and the Light Barrier

I hope that everyone on the site got to enjoy the Nova Series on time travel. I have already made an inquiry for a transcript so that I can read it slowly word for word. There is a wealth of information in it, not so much in the area of mathematical evidence but of fresh ideas on the subject coincided with older ones. I found myself for the first time actually challenging the idea that the light barrier can not be broken. I began searching some bookstores, and software dealers for some information on the mathematics to prove exactly why the light barrier cannot be broken. My search continues so perhaps I'm on to something. The experiment on last night's show seemed to inconclusively demonstrate that some particles of light might be able to travel faster than the speed of light.

Just as Einstein was troubled by the word "instantaneous" in the description of light by Newton, I am troubled with a single word in Einstein's description of mass being "infinite" as an object reaches the speed of light. This is probably true for something with a definite mass such as a spaceship or the human body. But what about light it self? If the demonstration of boosting microwaves faster than the speed can be proven true, then we have to ask ourselves what that really means. Does time stand still at the speed of light and can it be reversed as light particles are pushed beyond the light barrier? Or does it mean that the scale that measured the experiment is inaccurate and that the light barrier still holds? If the speed of light can be broken and indeed it can be conceived that information can in fact be sent 'back in time' then this in it self is not only remarkable, it is the groundwork for time travel! I am ironically taken back to an insert that I read only a couple of days ago of the recently released novel, The Age of Spiritual Machines (Ray Kurzweil). That suggests the possibility that in the next century a humans will not only be surpassed by computer intelligence, but my in fact be able to non destructively scan their brains knowledge to a computer that will think and act exactly as the person scanned.

Consider that a person can indeed be scanned into a computer that it may also be groundwork. Now, the personality inside is sent back in time as a computer program that can only sense the world around him as a computer can by either electronic images, sounds, radio waves, etc. Now this computer clone of your mind moves through telephone wires and radio frequencies like a computer data moves through a modem. Now, the computer speeds to an efficient speed less than the speed of light to return to it time of origin and downloads the information back to your brain in a reversed process f the scanning from the moment after you first 'went in to the program.' The cloned version of you would think and behave exactly as you would if you were physically there because in a way it IS you only computerized. Now you have memories of going back in time just as if you physical mind had done so. So you have time traveled! Or at least you have memory of doing so. Which in reality is all that really matters. Are we any less than our memory?


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

I believe this is the episode Keith-Richard Burton was referring to in his original post:

I’m unsure whether anything about the science involved has changed, but it’s absolutely worth a watch to grasp some of the fundamentals.