Larry Niven's Theory On Teleportation

Lew Rockwell Fan

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Not sure if it's the same quote as the one you're thinking of but Feynman introduced his third volume of lectures with "‘I think I can safely say that nobody understands quantum mechanics."
That's a good one, but actually I think I confused 2 different quotations:

Bohr:
If quantum mechanics hasn't profoundly shocked you, you haven't understood it yet.

Feynman:
"If you think you understand quantum theory . . . you don't understand quantum theory."
 

J Riff

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Yup. Any real discussion of this stuff leads to argument with no way to proof much of it. In theory a solar-powered craft could go anywhere, using 'free energy' but...*
 

Lew Rockwell Fan

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Yup. Any real discussion of this stuff leads to argument with no way to proof much of it.
The burden of proof is on the party making a positive assertion such as:
It's going to take an absurd amount of energy, however it's done.
or the implication in this:
Oh, you disbelieve in the law of conservation of energy?.
You've made a definite claim. In doing so, you are the one "throwing physics away". If I'm mistaken show me a CALCULATION, and the logic behind if, not just hand waving, of the exact "absurd amount of energy" required by the example I gave. The stepping disk may well be impossible, indeed I suspect it is, but you've made a specific claim about a specific conservation law being violated, and I can't see any way that it is.

Or if I've misunderstood you, and it is what I said about wormholes you are disputing, all I have to say is that the professional lit is well indexed and all you have to do it look it up. The concept does not originate in SF.
 

Vertigo

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That's a good one, but actually I think I confused 2 different quotations:

Bohr:
If quantum mechanics hasn't profoundly shocked you, you haven't understood it yet.

Feynman:
"If you think you understand quantum theory . . . you don't understand quantum theory."
Ah now that second one (Your Feynman one) was the one I was looking for but instead I came across the one I posted and figured I'd misremembered. :)
 

J Riff

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The minute you disprove basic laws of physics, I'm in.
The discussion of this goes on apace, the alt. media is rife with talktalktalk - and I'm there, but no magic please.
Really. How does a law of physics become open for discussion? Start there.
Anyway, this is not the place, there's a lot of other places set up to go off the deep end. Here, we write, so we are allowed to lie and fantasize.
 

Ray McCarthy

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I was thinking again about this ... I've not discussed it with Niven. Did he actually write OUTSIDE the books about this?
Perhaps he has no thought out theory at all, but just picked "nice" properties to make what he wanted in the stories work. My space series with starships has "jump drive" not because I have a theory, or even that I really believe there is one, but because otherwise I'd need magic or else forget writing space stories. I thought what I put in (which isn't original) was just the least objectionable. Suspension of disbelief is possible as it's not explained on basis that 7,000 years more advances Alien explanations are not understandable.

If you analyse it, then the really it's "portal magic" like Narnia or a thousand "otherworld" stories made to look scientific because you need a spaceship to get to deep space to do it.

But other authors have planetary gateways, portals, stargates etc just like Niven or CJ Cherryh's Morgaine or Jack L. Chalker's Punch or Transporter in Rings series. Some even with railroads through them. Star Trek's Transporter gets silly because it works with only one end and has a silly explanation.
 

J Riff

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I like jumping, once you've built up so enough potential energy. Don't like fluky black-hole wormholes and whatnot... seems unreliable. Like: Oh no, we have to get back to Earth to save it but, oop, the wormhole is acting up, just like they constantly close the subway here without warning.
Met Niven, at a con in the 80s, he was in party mode so dint talk about much about deep subjects. )
 

Lew Rockwell Fan

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The minute you disprove basic laws of physics, I'm in.
The discussion of this goes on apace, the alt. media is rife with talktalktalk - and I'm there, but no magic please.
Really. How does a law of physics become open for discussion? Start there.
Anyway, this is not the place, there's a lot of other places set up to go off the deep end. Here, we write, so we are allowed to lie and fantasize.
You mean like fantasizing that movement, regardless of how, between 2 locations of similar potential energy violates conservation of energy unless it uses some unspecified fantastic amount? When you refuse to calculate it or even say why? When you show a serious calculation of what the minimum amount is, I'll begin to take it seriously. I'm certainly not saying stepping disks are possible, but to insist that this violates conservation laws, when in fact, THOSE LAWS ARE ADDRESSED AND TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT, and are in fact essential to the plot of one of the stories, makes me suspect that you either don't the stories or you don't know the physics.

Or did you mean the fantasy that wormholes were invented by SF writers?

SF often involves assuming something that seems impossible, and in reality probably is, is possible, and works out a way for it to be consistent both internally and with the rest of science. It is NOT treated like magic. Niven is not the "hard" SF writer he is often claimed to be but you are barking up the wrong tree. Teela's luck is far more problematic than stepping disks.

Calculate exactly what these enormous energy requirements are and show your work. Start there. No magic, please.
 

J Riff

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Yup. No way Jose. YouTube is full of interminable discussions of all this stuff and it never resolves and is no fun after a while. And it pays squat, zip, and can take up a lot of time, years go by yKnow? Ideally stuff just keeps leaking slowly into the 'mainstream' and, whatever tech is acceptable in the hands of humanity, will dribble on out. I never argue with people in their field of expertise... math, physics, planetary destruction, etc.
 

galanx

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"Flashcrowd" had huge heavy floating drums that were connected to the teleportation boots to act as dampers for the conservation of heat and momentum.
„Essentially it’s a hell of a lot of soft iron surrounded by a hell of a lot more foam plastic, enough to float it, plus a displacement-booth receiver feeding into the iron. Look, see it surge?“
The island rose several feet, slowly, then fell back as slowly. Ripples moved outward and became waves as they reached the station.
"That must have been a big load. Now, here’s how it works. You know that the rotation of the Earth puts a limit on how far you can send a load. If you were to shift from here to Rio de Janeiro, say, you’d flick in moving up and sideways-mainly up, because Rio and L.A. are almost the same distance from the equator.
But with the long-distance booths, the receiver picks up the kinetic energy and shunts it to the United Air Lines velocity damper. That big mass of iron surges up or down or sideways until the water stops it-or someone flicks in from Rio and the damping body stops cold.“
 

hiruadjas

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may be off topic, but a great novel that also incorporates teleportation and quantum particles is Timeline by Michael Crichton. Except they use a quantum computer to project themselves back in time or something like that.
 

GNDN

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There is only two possible methods of teleportation:
1. Matter A is transported to location B unaltered.
2. Matter A is transported to location B altered.

Teleportation can be done 3 ways:
1. Create a snapshot template of the quantum state of the teleportee and use extralocal materials to build a replica teleportee. (no method of visualising quantum states currently known)
2. Reduce the subject to a fixed quantem state (no method of visualising quantum states currently known), freeze them at absolute zero, map the teleportee,s quantum state. Transmit as above
3. Reduce the teleportee's physical state to an atomic flux, transmit the physical matter to a point location, (no method of transmitting matter currently known) use the original flux state data to reintegrate the original physical state. (no method of transmitting matter currently known)
All the above (or below) requires obviating or circumventing Werner Heisenberg, and trust me, he hates to be wrong.

Or, just invent a really neat way to travel around the Universe.

GNDN
 

Daysman

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A few unsupported and possibly spurious statements on a dead thread:
  • Teleportation is all about continuity, no matter the technical details
  • Wormhole endpoints take care of conservation issues locally, having mass, momentum, etc. to give and take on arrival and departure
  • Quantum entanglement is about history...
  • Quantum teleportation is about every history...
  • Niven allowed the theories in flashcrowd to evolve as his journelistic hero researched the topic...
  • Much of Niven's fiction predated popular / modern traversible wormhole models
And I'm done.
 
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EsmeNhaMaire

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Personally, I don't thin Niven had a theory of teleportation - he was more interested in the consequences if it were to be possible. At least, that is what I got from his books. The thing that I particularly loved about his stories that centered around the introduction of teleportation booths is that they were, in my opinion, absolutely true to the spirit of science fiction - you play "what if?" with one thing, and then look at the consequences of that one change. I still re-read Nivens books to this day..

Personally, I'm dubious as to whether teleportation of humans is ever likely to be possible - I gather that information theory says "no!" - and frankly, I'm not sure I'd like it to be actually possible. convenient though it woudl be in some circumstances.
 
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