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Beating Books: Why We Cannot ‘Adorn Yourself’ as a Star Trek

Gene Roddenberry was a man before his time, accurately predicting the development of state-of-the-art equipment such as smartphones, laptops, Bluetooth and bionic eyes – even tractor boards. But another technology that Roddenberry called in the 1960s was no longer developed: teleportation. We are sorry "we do not have enough strength," as Scotty would say, we no longer have a foundation of knowledge to make it possible. Right now, at least. In their latest book, Frequently Asked Questions About Nature, Jorge Cham and Daniel Whiteson investigate in this and many other situations that people face – from whether there is an afterlife, why the aliens did not meet us, or whether our physical appearance is a computer simulation.


Taken from Frequently Asked Questions About Nature and Jorge Cham and Daniel Whiteson. Copyright © 2021 by Jorge Cham and Daniel Whiteson. All rights reserved. No part of this section may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the written permission of the publisher.

If your dream of teleportation is to be here for one minute, and then to be somewhere else at another time, then we are sorry to tell you right away that this is not possible. Unfortunately, physics has very strict rules about what happens at the same time. Everything that happens (event) must have a reason, which seeks to disseminate information. Consider this: In order for two things to be relevant to each other (as you disappear from view here), they must communicate with each other. And in this universe, everything, including knowledge, has a limit of speed.

Knowledge has to travel through space just like anything else, and the fastest thing in the universe is the speed of light. In fact, the speed of light could be termed “the speed of knowledge” or “the speed of the universe.” Burned in relativity is the real concept of cause and effect, which is at the heart of physics.

Even gravity cannot move faster than light. The earth does not feel the force of gravity from where the Sun is right now; feels gravity from where the Sun was eight minutes ago. It is a time that takes time to master ninety-three million miles from here and there. If the sun had not disappeared (sending a call to its vacation), the Earth would have resumed its normal course for eight minutes before realizing the Sun was gone.

Therefore, the idea that you can disappear from one place and be seen in another place at the same time cannot be. Something has to happen in the middle, and that something can’t move faster than light.

Unfortunately, most of us are not adamant when it comes to the meaning of “teleportation.” Most of us will take “immediately” or “in the blink of an eye” or “as fast as the laws of science may allow” on our teleportation needs. If so, there are two ways to make a teleportation machine work:

1. Your messaging system can send you where you are going at light speed.

2. Your messaging machine can shorten the distance between where you are and where you want to go.

Option # 2 is what you would call a “portal” type of teleportation. In films, it can be a form of teleportation that opens a door, often through the nose or some kind of extradimensional subspace, which you pass through to find somewhere. Wormholes are imaginary channels that connect remote locations, and astronomers say that there are more than three dimensions that we know of.

Sadly, all these ideas are still very fanciful. We have never seen a worm, nor do we know how to open or straighten its lead. And extra dimensions are not something you can move on. They just represent the process of how your particles can move.

The most exciting thing to talk about is Option # 1, which, as it turns out, could be something we can do soon.

Get There Quickly

If we could not appear in some places at once, or through the air, could we get there as fast as we could? The highest speed of the universe, 300 million meters per second, is the fastest way to reduce your trip to a small fraction of a second and go to the stars takes years instead of years or years. The light speed of teleportation can be amazing.

To do that, you may have to adjust a machine that somehow picks up your body and pushes it at the speed of light toward your destination. Unfortunately, there is a big problem with this idea, and I say you are too heavy. The truth is that you are too big to walk at the speed of light. First, it can take a lot of time and energy for the tiny particles in your body (whether collected or broken in some way) to reach the same speed as light. And second, you can’t reach the speed of light. It does not matter if you have been overeating or working on your CrossFit; nothing with any mass can move at the speed of light.

Things like electrons and quarks, which bind to your atoms, have mass. This means that it requires energy to move, more energy to move faster, and unlimited energy to reach the speed of light. They can move very fast, but they cannot achieve the speed of light.

This means that you, with the molecules and tiny particles that make up what you are now, cannot send. Not immediately, not at light speed. Moving your body somewhere quickly will not happen. It is impossible to move small things in your body quickly.

But does this mean that teleportation is impossible? Not at all!

There is one way it can still happen, and if we take a break what “you” means. What if we weren’t carrying you, your molecules or small objects? What if we just gave your opinion?

You are the Knowledge

One way to get high-speed phones is to scan them and send them as a photon shade. Photos have no mass, which means they can go as fast as nature allows. In fact, photons can travel at the speed of light (there is no such thing as a slow-moving photon). *

Here’s how to get started with instant messaging:

Step # 1: Draw your body and scan where all your molecules are.

Step # 2: Post this destination with photos.

Step # 3: Receive this and rebuild your body with new materials.

Is this possible? Humans have made great strides in scanning and printing 3D technology. Nowadays, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can scan your body up to 0.1 mm, which is about the size of a brain cell. And scientists have used 3D printeries to print more complex groups of living cells (called “organoids”) in experiments with cancer treatment. We have also developed a machine (using a microscope) that can hold and move one atom. So it is not hard to imagine that one day we could scan and print the whole body.

The real obstacle, however, can be not technical but intellectual. After all, if someone cheated on you, would it be you?

Remember, there is nothing special about the little things that make up your body right now. The small particles of the type given are the same. Each electron is very similar to all other electrons, and the same is true of quarks. The tiny particles do not come out of the factory of the whole universe and personality or any kind of shape. The only difference between the two electrons or the two quarks is that each one has its own set of microscopic particles. *

But how much would your copy amount to? Well, it takes two things. The first is the technical conflict that you photograph and print. Can it read and print your cells? Your molecules? Your atoms, or your particles?

The big question is whether your “you-ness” depends on the smallest detail. What level of detail does it take to keep the book looking like you? This seems to be an open-ended question, and the answer may depend on your self-esteem.

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