The First Video Blog: I Am Doc Brown

There was a bit of confusion on today’s blog regarding why, exactly, time travel to the past can’t work, so I decided to clear it up…with my very first video blog!

I’ve been wanting to do one of these ever since I got the new iPad. Although I’m not a huge fan of video blogs for a variety of reasons, there are times when you can convey something by video that can’t work in writing or pictures. The keys are brevity, focus, and an integral visual element.

Before you watch it, please know that I reference the apron made with an old cow shirt I wore as a kid as seen in this blog entry. Also, in case you see this on my YouTube channel, there is a reason why my YouTube screen name is what it is.

What do you think? Would you like to see more video blogs every now and then?

18 thoughts on “The First Video Blog: I Am Doc Brown”

  1. Apparently, this video was shot in an alternate timeline because, in this timeline, we were promised a Power Pose along with the apron.

  2. Not bad, despite being only partially correct, but you are looking a bit beefy these days. You need to lay off those mojorrheas.

  3. So based on this theory, how then does forward time travel work? Would you be able to go forward along the same timeline that you left (since forward travel is really just skipping over time, I think so). But that would then mean after going back, you could never travel forward back to the reality you left from, since you would then be traveling forward along the new “alternate timeline” you created by going backwards.

    I think this is a hard concept for people to grasp because to do so, you have to first accept that the multiverse theory of quantum mechanics is how the universe works, which is a tough thing to wrap your head around. How do we even know this is the “true” reality? Is there even a “true” reality?

    • Exactly. The future has yet to be determined in this timeline/universe, so you can travel into the future. You just can’t travel back again after that without creating a new universe.

      In the example I gave in the video, after traveling to 1981 in the new universe, it would be possible to travel back to the other universe after your original departure time, but it would take a heck of a time machine. (And nothing would have changed in that universe except you would have disappeared for a little while.) It’s theoretically possible and doesn’t create any paradoxes, but I’m just not sure how your time machine would “identify” the old universe at that point.

      You’re right–we can’t know if this is the true reality. However, I contend that this is the true reality until someone travels back in time. So as long as no one invents time travel, we can continue to exist in the one true reality.

  4. Yeah, your multidimensional time line is not really related to Doc Brown’s at all. In Doc Brown’s research, There is a single alterable timeline in a single universe. It can be changed, but only one exists. I think in your postulate, you run into a more inter-dimensional travel scenario. In theory, all these other universes must already exist, and thus moving forward, or backward in time is something that has already been done. You are simply running the trail that was already set.
    This bothers me from a more philosophical perspective, because it is a broad version of predestination. All possibilities of what can be done, already exist. It’s like there are an infinite number of yous, and an infinite number of everyone elses. And no matter what “decisions” are made, the world resulting from each decision already exists. I have changed nothing, not even my perception of the world around me (because I still exist in linear time). This only bothers me because I enjoy the idea that my decisions are in fact mine to make, rather than following any (even if it’s one of an infinite number of) paths that are already established.

    • Red–My theory is actually a little different than what you describe. First, there is only one universe until someone time travels back in time. That action creates another universe.

      Second, this is something I explained too quickly in the video, but there is a paradox with time travel that shows that Doc Brown’s theory cannot possibly be correct. It has to do with the example I give regarding me going back to January 9, 1981 and preventing myself from being born. If I kill myself as a baby, I can’t grow up to build a time machine and go back in time to kill myself as a baby. It’s a paradox that is physically impossible. Our universe has certain rules, and that’s one of them. That’s why I think the only way time travel could work is if you create a new universe when you activate the time machine.

  5. I liked the video blog, and think it was a good way to explain your theory of time travel.

    Maybe the missing Power Pose actually happened in a video blog from another timeline? 🙂

    The many theories of time travel are interesting, but my favorite description of how it could work comes from this Doctor Who quote: “People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually, from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint, it’s more like a big ball of wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey, stuff.”

    • Ha ha…I like that theory about the Power Pose, Katy. 🙂

      Doesn’t Doctor Who travel to other universes/dimensions?

      • Yes, he does travel to other universes (usually its just other planets in this universe), but still manages to stay in the same version of reality (or timeline). There isn’t a limit of how far back or forward they can travel, as far as I know.

        The issue of paradoxes has been brought up, as there have been times when they’ve traveled along their own timeline (thus having 2 versions of The Doctor and companion) and if the versions would meet it could cause the universe to collapse or time to unravel– I can’t remember which exactly, but it’s pretty awful.

        A few seasons back the idea of an alternate reality was explored, as a ‘rift in time’ had opened and the travelers fell through and ended up in the same year on Earth, but everything was different.

        I’m sure I probably missed some aspects of how that version of time travel works, but hopefully my little lesson isn’t too far off- and if it is, someone please correct me. 🙂

        Jamey, you should really watch some episodes of it to learn more, just don’t watch the one called ‘Blink’ by yourself unless you are prepared to be terrified.

        • I saw your review of Doctor Who on the blog. I’ve tried to watch it before, but I just couldn’t get into the campy effects. Are they supposed to be funny, or are you able to take the show seriously?

          • I think Doctor Who is supposed to be funny, and I’ve never tried to take the show seriously. Some of the more recent episodes have tried to take a more serious angle, and the special effects have improved as the budget for the show has increased, but it’s still just a silly sci-fi show.


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