A single fact from scientific theory can legitimize the far-fetched. Take the nature of time. We move forward in time at twenty-four hours a day and sixty minutes an hour. ‘We are all time travellers… We are all stuck on the same train, and for practical purposes, it never speeds up, slows down, or goes backwards’ (Time Travel in Theory and Practice, Love (2013) fromThe Time Traveller’s Almanac.) Or does it? Absolute time is a theory of the past; gravity slows down time’s progress and travelling at high-speed triggers the contrary.
Part 3 of Through the Portal looks at The Twins Paradox and Robert Heinlein's 1956 novel,Time for the Stars.
‘You are invited to a book launch,’ said the message
on Facebook. I was looking forward to canapés and prosecco in some swanky
Bloomsbury office, when the penny dropped; this was an online party with the
publisher and author on hand for live chat. Unperturbed, I put on a clean
sweatshirt, opened a can of cider, opened a pack of falafels and jar of olives and logged on.