Comments on Return to the future

Ruxor (2004-06-03T00:42:22Z)

I have a greater belief in the butterfly effect than you do. I'm not sure about the earthquake, but I'm pretty confident that the Chernobyl disaster, which depends on very tenuous circumstances and improbable human parameters, would not have happened if anything had been changed as early as a few years before (even if I did not do anything consciously to avoid it). And I would never remember the precise date of an earthquake (unless I knew in advance I was going to go back in time). I would be unable to reproduce the proof of Fermat's last theorem (though I might point out that it follows from the Shimura-Taniyama-Weil conjecture: I can't remember whether this was already noticed at the time).

Anonymous Coward #937 (Charly) (2004-06-02T20:21:37Z)

You could predict an otherwise unpredictable natural effect (for instance, thanks to <URL: http://neic.usgs.gov/neis/eqlists/10maps_usa.html"> I found out that an earthquake with a mgnitude of 7.9 occured in the Gulf of Alaska in 1987 November 30th 19:23 UTC). And that wouldn't change whatever you do, wouldn't it? Another possibility is predicting the disaster of Chernobyl (not too sure about the independance of your actions for that one).
I don't know if you could reproduce the proof of Fermat's last theorem (I think it took a lot of people to do that) but if you can, then that would surely mean something…


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