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I'm not sure of a medium, but...
07-08-2014, 04:14 PM,
#1
TWLBOAJ
I'm not sure of a medium, but...
I have a bit of a sci-fi idea. I'm not sure what kind of story I want to make it into, but the idea is too fun to just abandon.

In order to make sense, the following background is needed: we perceive space (that is, physical things like matter) in three dimensions. We move in three-dimensional directions when going from one place to another. Time, on the other hand, we only perceive in one dimension; that is, forward on one plane with possibility for hindsight, acknowledging what is behind. This is why we call linear time the "fourth dimension," because it is another directional plane of time-space.

That said, if writing a thing about time travel, wouldn't there need to be another dimension for time to travel on? A Y axis to match the X. This would enable extra-linear movement, and create a capacity for travel that is more than simply in one's one timeline at one second per second. Travelling backwards in a pre-existing timeline is not possible because an item cannot occupy the same space at the same time as another item. And at any given time that has already been occupied, all the space is similarly occupied. That spot in the timeline is "full," as it were.

If we consider time-space to be like a multi-lane highway, then time can be illustrated with the actual ground the highway is paved on, while space is the pavement itself. If the entire highway is gridlocked, so that each spot in each lane is full, everyone can only move in the same direction at the same speed. One second per second, moving in space as all things will, accounting for planetary rotation and orbit, and the continuous expansion of the spacial universe.

Now here's where the story stuff comes in: in keeping with the X/Y axis directions of space, humanity figures out a way to move laterally in time as well. They can take things out of the "alpha" timeline, a consistent sine wave on the X and Y axes, and put them on other coordinate points to go in the same pattern, in a parallel timeline. This opens up spots in the alpha timeline, allowing people to "switch lanes" within it, so that they can travel through these empty spaces as fast as they like. However, they still cannot travel backwards, since the timeline before this discovery is full. And if somebody gets into a dead end, their timeline cannot intersect or override a pre-existing one, and will end. They won't die, so much as just stop existing, since dead people are still real and consuming space in time. So when a nucleus of colonists are sent to create an alternate timeline to live in, those empty lanes are explored and used by specially-trained time travelers, who, idk, go on adventures and stuff.

I have the idea, you see, but not a plot or characters.

I just thought I'd share this thing in progress.

[Image: 17321902285830625341.png]
08-08-2014, 11:11 PM,
#2
VeritasUnae
RE: I'm not sure of a medium, but...
it is fabulous and i like it

can two functions of time ever intersect on the x-y time plane?

[Image: 86638120627857391650.png]
10-08-2014, 04:19 PM,
#3
TWLBOAJ
RE: I'm not sure of a medium, but...
Every point in time would have its own set of coordinates, and every time"line" (they actually follow sine waves) has an inevitable trajectory. However, no two timelines can intersect, because to be at the same point in spacetime as something else is not possible, it'd be like trying to steal someone's seat at the theater while they're still sitting in the chair.

[Image: 17321902285830625341.png]
14-08-2014, 06:08 AM,
#4
TWLBOAJ
RE: I'm not sure of a medium, but...
I'm thinking a game might be a neat medium for this idea, and I'm further fleshing out some stuff for it.

For instance, the Timewaves (as they will be called instead of timeLINES) will follow a sine wave of y=sin(x) for simplicity, and each period (that is, 360 degrees or 2π) would, if traveled at the standard 1 second per second, would be 40 Earth hours long. And after a moderately large (maybe 250 people?) nucleus of humanity is sent to explore and live in a different timeline, scientist-adventurers are trained to zoom around at varying speeds along the alpha timewave, since those spots are vacated until the time colony comes back, which they haven't yet, so they have plenty of time (HAH, a play on words) to play with. They've also begun working on it as fast as possible, to avoid any litigation or military bullshit fucking it all up. (Seriously. No military in this. I'm sick of military in sci-fi where it doesn't need to be there. I realize the irony, given this is the home of the Skeleton Civil War, but that's a fightin' story, whereas this really isn't.)

Also, when following a pre-etched sinusoidal timewave, wherein the inevitable "space" is already accounted for, one might travel faster than normal, but only if the original "inhabitant" of that particular timewave section is not occupying it. The timewave will expand to accommodate an existing thing, but if the timewave is following another pattern, like with the time colonists going at another angle to create their own sine wave parallel to the alpha tiemwave, one can only move at one second per second just like those without the ability to use emptied lanes in the collective alpha timewave. So if someone were to try and take a "shortcut," trying to jump from one crest of the sine wave to the next one, they'd be forced to experience all 12.73 hours it would take to get that far, rather than jumping as fast as they like, as they might in the alpha.

This "Crest-Jumping," as I've called it, is one of the few things that is absolutely NOT legal, and was quickly outlawed, since incorrect timing by even a moment could cut off sections of the alpha timewave and basically just ruin everything ever. Grossly incorrect crest-jumping attempts could, in theory, result in the end of the world, as the alpha timeline is cut short in its entirety.

So, naturally, I'm going to do something with it regarding some sort of plot.

As far as format goes, I'm unsure what I'd want to do. I've never made a game before, and though I know what I like seeing in games and what I'm sick of, I haven't even decided on genre. Obviously first person shooter or 2d platformer are not happening, though, so don't worry. Tongue

[Image: 17321902285830625341.png]
14-08-2014, 11:19 AM,
#5
dinowoman
RE: I'm not sure of a medium, but...
This sounds like a wonderful idea. One question: when colonists go off to explore other time waves, what's there when they get there? Presumably not other civilisations because that would mean those slots would already be full.

[Image: 04321571052056156049.jpg]
14-08-2014, 08:34 PM,
#6
TWLBOAJ
RE: I'm not sure of a medium, but...
I haven't decided yet. Maybe something ominous, that would make them come back early and screw stuff up. Because if they're creating a wave on the pre-existing fabric of timespace (which of course they are, because it's already there) there might be something nasty to find. I'm unsure.

[Image: 17321902285830625341.png]


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