5 Mind-Bending Time Travel Theories That Just Might Work

A wormhole would essentially allow a ship, for instance, to travel from one point to another faster than the speed of light, allowing it to arrive at its destination sooner than a beam of light would by taking a shortcut through space-time. That way, the vehicle doesn’t actually break the rule of the so-called universal speed limit – the speed of light – because the ship never actually travels at a speed faster than light. Theoretically, a wormhole could be used to cut not just through space, but through time as well.

Tipler Cylinder Time Machine

To use a Tipler cylinder time machine, you would leave the Earth in a spaceship and travel to where the cylinder is spinning in space. When you are close enough to the surface of the cylinder (where space time is most warped), you would orbit around it a few times then return to Earth, arriving back in the past. How far back depends on the number of orbits you made. Even though you feel your own time moving forward as normal while you are orbiting the cylinder, outside the warped region you would be moving steadily into the past. This would be like climbing up a spiral staircase only to find that with each full circle climbed you are on a floor below the previous one.

Doughnut Vacuum

According to Amos Ori from Technion at the Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, space can be twisted enough to create a local gravity field that looks like a doughnut of some arbitrary size. The gravitational field lines circle around this doughnut, so that space and time are both tightly curved back on themselves. Crucially, this does away with the need for any hypothetical exotic matter. Although it is difficult to describe what this would look or be like in real life, Ori says the mathematics reveal that every period of time after the time machine was created would be somewhere in the vacuum inside the doughnut. All you need to do is work out how to get there. In theory, it should be possible to travel back to any point in time after the time machine was built.


Exotic Matter

In physics, exotic matter is matter that somehow deviates from the norm and has “exotic” properties. Because time travel is considered to be non-physical, tachyons are believed by physicists either to not exist, or else to be incapable of interacting with normal matter. But when negative energy or mass – so-called exotic matter – bends space-time, all sorts of amazing phenomena might become possible: traversable wormholes, which could act as tunnels to otherwise distant parts of the universe; warp drive, which would allow for faster-than-light travel; and time machines, which might permit journeys into the past.


Cosmic Strings

Cosmic Strings are a hypothetical 1-dimensional (spatially) topological defect in the fabric of spacetime left over from the formation of the universe. Interaction could create fields of closed time-like curves permitting backwards time travel. Some scientists have suggested using “cosmic strings” to construct a time machine. By maneuvering two cosmic strings close together – or possibly just one string plus a black hole – it is theoretically possible to create a whole array of “closed time-like curves.” Your best bet is to fire two infinitely long cosmic strings past each other at very high speeds, then fly your ship around them in a carefully calculated figure eight. In theory, you would be able to emerge anywhere, anytime.


Black Hole Time Travel

A black hole has a dramatic e‑ffect on time, slowing it down far more than anything else in the galaxy. That makes it a natural time machine. If a space agency were controlling the mission from Earth they’d observe that each full orbit took 16 minutes. But for the brave people on board, close to this massive object, time would be slowed down. And here the e‑ffect would be far more extreme than the gravitational pull of Earth. The crew’s time would be slowed down by half. For every 16-minute orbit, they’d only experience eight minutes of time. Imagine that the train left the station on January 1, 2050. It circles Earth over and over again for 100 years before finally coming to a halt on New Year’s Day, 2150. The passengers will have only lived one week because time is slowed down that much inside the train. When they got out they’d find a very diff‑erent world from the one they’d left. In one week they’d have traveled 100 years into the future.

Deadly Hunter Killer submarine – new supersub

She cost around £1billion to build, has sonar so sensitive it can hear other vessels 3,000 miles away and carries a giant payload of 38 deadly Tomahawk cruise missiles.

HMS Ambush, the Royal Navy’s newest nuclear attack submarine, is one of the most sophisticated and powerful vessels of her type ever built.

The giant Astute-class sub, which was launched today, is so hi-tech she doesn’t even need a periscope.

Awesome: HMS Ambush, which was built by BAE Systems, is believed to be the world’s most powerful nuclear attack submarine. Her huge weapons payload includes super-accurate Tomahawk cruise missiles and Spearfish torpedoes for fighting other vessels

Success: The super hi-tech vessel has undergone rigorous testing ahead of today’s launch. Despite her size the sub’s 103 crew will be tightly packed, with some sleeping up to eight to a room in bunk beds

Super sophisticated: A cross-section of the sub shows the complexity of her design and the need to fit as much technology in as possible

HMS Ambush graphic

Her crew instead using a digital camera system to see above the surface when she is submerged.

Built by BAE Systems, she has enough nuclear fuel to carry on cruising for up to 25 years non-stop – giving her huge tactical flexibility.

Her nuclear reactor is so powerful her range is only really limited by the need for maintenance and resupply.

Astute-class submarines are the largest, most advanced and most powerful in the history of the Navy, boasting world-class design, weaponry and versatility.

HMS Ambush can travel over 500 miles in a day, allowing them to be deployed anywhere in the world within two weeks.

The vessel is also one of the quietest sea-going vessels built, capable of sneaking along an enemy coastline to drop off special forces or tracking a boat for weeks.

Detailed: HMS Ambush was fitted out with her sophisticated technology at Devonshire dock hall in Barrow-in-Furness Cumbria. She contains some of the most hi-tech weapons and sonar systems ever created

HMS Ambush: Her powerful nuclear reactor allows her to travel around the world without stopping. She can cruise for up to 500 miles in a day

Foreign forces will find it almost impossible to sneak up undetected by her incredibly powerful sonar equipment that can hear halfway around the world.

Her Tomahawk missiles are capable of hitting targets up to 1,200 miles away – making her a vital weapon for Britain’s armed forces.

The sub’s commander Peter Green, 47, said the vessel’s capabilities are ‘unparalleled.’

‘This sub is a huge step forward in underwater operations,’ he told the Daily Mirror.

‘Her listening ability is quite awesome. She has a sonar system with the processing power of 2,000 laptop computers.

Inside: The weapons room of the £1billion sub. Many details of her weapons system remain top secret

Feeding the crew: The submarine’s kitchen will be staffed by five chefs providing food 24-hours a day for her officers and crew

‘It is possible this class of submarine is the most advanced in the world.’

Another Astute Class sub is currently undergoing sea trials – and could be operational within a year.

Many details of HMS Ambush’s weapons systems cannot be revealed for security reasons.

Most of her 103-strong crew live in bunk-beds measuring two metres by one metre, with up to 18 submariners sharing one room.

After today’s launch HMS Ambush will begin sea trials before eventually beginning operations.

12 big, bold concepts for homesteading on Earth’s final frontier

Looking like something right out of Star Trek: The Next Generation, Trilobis is a happy marriage of renewable power, exploratory gadgetry and luxury living. Solar cells embedded in the ship’s fiberglass skin power the electrics (and tint the windows), while twin hydrogen fuel cells (positioned just where the nacelles would be) pump out 600 horsepower of thrust. The Trilobis sleeps six and also features a glass observation bulb, 10 feet underwater.

The Infinitas

If you fancy yourself more the Tony Stark type, maybe the Infinitas is for you. A 300-foot yacht that sleeps 16, including crew, the infinitas come equipped with a swimming pool, spa, helipad and even a glass “sky bridge”. With Diesel/electric engines capable of reaching speeds over 20 knots, the Infinitas isn’t a slouch in the propulsion department, either. And with 65,000 gallons of fuel and 28,000 of water, the Infinitas lives up to its name, allowing you to stay at sea nigh-on indefinitely.


For the more traditional home-dweller, I present Origin. Sitting upon its circular lily pad-inspired hull, Origin actually looks more at home in the New York luxury apartment market than at sea. Sure there’s an underwater viewing deck, similar to the Trilobis, but otherwise Origin offers all the comforts of (a very nice) home. You’ve got floor-to-ceiling windows, high ceilings, hardwood floors and even a rooftop deck to sate your apartment-living withdrawals. Just don’t tread on those solar cells up there!

The Solus 4 Marine Research Center

If you’re asking yourself about the scientific research I mentioned, look no further. Thought up by Solus 4 this 7,500-square-foot lab is designed for the purpose of studying not only sea life, but sea-borne phenomena as well (think tsunamis). Intended to nestle in on the sea bed, the research lab is also a permanent residence for its scientists and a center for public learning. The structure is powered by passive solar collectors, rain water collectors and tidal energy generators.


Speaking of the public, no person is an island unto oneself, right? If society is going out into the deep blue yonder, why not take the whole society? Lilypad does just that, 50,000 people at a time. Residents could choose between hillside bungalows or undersea apartments. With a lake of rainwater at its center and every renewable energy source known to man powering it, Lilypad might truly be the city of our floating tomorrow. Literally floating, as Lilypad is designed not to propel itself, but to be carried by the tide.


If city living isn’t really your thing, but you like the overall feel of the Lilypad, check out Orsos. More Island resort than home, Orsos is your own 60-by-115-foot motorized atoll. Up to three small craft can dock alongside, letting you to throw luaus on your palm-ensconced upper deck bar and grill. It also houses a movie theater, hot tub and sizable rear deck for cannonballs into the ocean, as well as lavish accommodation for up to 16. Orsos will definitely make you the hit of the high seas (if you want to let your friends aboard, that is).

Tropical Island Paradise

Need a bigger private island? Try this entry from Yacht Island Design. Featuring four guest cabanas, as well as a mind-blowing owner’s cabin built into the volcano, this yacht really is a small community unto itself. Not only does it boast a giant pool, but also a library, cinema, game rooms, a fully equipped spa and gym — and a deployable “beach deck,” complete with massage tents and Sea-Doos.

Underwater Condos

If the tide is too turbulent a tour guide for you, maybe try staking your claim near one of the ocean’s fantastic vistas. Underwater condo developments allow for small communities to spring up upon the seabed beside reefs, near migration lanes or even near sunken ruins. Imagine living in your own little Atlantis. Of course, not the entire community will be under the sea: elevators and air shafts will connect you with the topside world, offering access to open vistas, community center venues and the docks — so that you can venture out and about, should you so desire.

The Last Resort

Something you might like to dock topside is this little beauty. Reportedly designed after the “undulating shape of the waterfront”, The Last Resort actually reminds me of a blue whale opening its mouth to feed. Either way its a charming little solar-equipped space saver, and is perfect for weekend getaways. Sofas and beds are tucked into the bulkheads, popping out when wanted and hiding away seamlessly when not. It sleeps up to six, and includes solar panels up on the roof deck.

The Streets of Monaco

If you’re more the cruel despot type, looking to create a powerful oligarchy on a small scale, The Streets of Monaco is for you! You and 15 of your wealthiest, most powerful guests will luxuriate in scale models of the Hotel de Paris, the Prince’s Palace and La Rascasse. You’ll enjoy amenities like a casino, swim-up bar, tennis court, submarine launchpad and even a go-kart version of the Grand Prix circuit. The 16 of you willful despots will be absolutely pampered by the 70-member crew designated to tiny lower-deck living quarters! Yay!

Sea Orbiter

A more balanced civilization at sea, Sea orbiter is both community and research vessel. Topping the height charts at 170 feet, more than half of this vertical ship will be submerged, allowing for under-water airlocks and modules that will give divers unprecedented access to sea life. An added benefit of this sea-faring habitation is that it’s slated to start construction next month, possibly reaching completion next year. Quite pioneering.


Like a scaled-up extrapolation of the Sea Orbiter, Water-Scraper is a small city designed to be pertpetually self-sustaining. Everything from the rooftop rain forest to the ballast tendrils, and even the hydroponics bays and animal life, will create energy for the vessel. Water-Scraper will be large enough to contain the likes of malls and swimming pools, sports venues and restaurants, all while providing everyone aboard both living and work spaces. The city at sea will have finally arrived.

Tree-Inspired Tower: Condo Balconies Unfurl Like Leaves

An iconic new mixed-use development in the heart of Montpellier in southern France, L’Arbre Blanc (The White Tree) grew out of a design concept tied to the outdoor traditions of this temperate region along the Mediterranean Sea.

Spinning out from a central core, the design-defining balconies unfold brilliantly to offer upper-level residents an array of amazing panoramic views while providing shade for units below.

This collaborative project by Sou Fujimoto Architects, Nicolas Laisné Associés and Manal Rachdi Oxo Architects (via ArchDaily with images by RSI Studio) includes a restaurant, bar, offices and art gallery in addition to dwellings.

Set in the fastest-growing city in France, the building is designed as a transition point between the heart of the old city and a series of faster-growing neighborhoods surrounding the existing center.

A series of passive heating and cooling strategies, including wind and solar usage, reinforce the tree concept with practical and sustainable solutions for everyday occupants.

In terms of the housing units themselves: “The architects sought to encourage free-choice architecture, which they see as underpinning tomorrow’s housing trend where everyone starts with a ‘housing stock’ when they buy their flat and are not confined to manufactured articles, regimented layouts, turnkey spaces. Instead they are given possibilities, modular interior spaces they can choose from a catalogue of optional features and floor plans.”


Top 10 Pervasive Tech Myths That Are Only Wasting Your Time

Ever been told that you should fully discharge your battery to prolong its life? Or that jail breaking your phone is illegal? Or that you should wait for the newest Intel processor because it’s going to be “so much faster”? These are tech myths we hear all the time, and likely spread to our friends — but most are just a waste of your time (and in some cases, they can actually harm your gadgets). Here are some of the worst offenders.

Better Hardware Specs = Better Gadgets

If you’re waiting to upgrade your gear until the next big processor comes out, or until the latest Android phone with even more RAM appears, you’re probably wasting your time. These days, most hardware specs don’t even matter that much. Processors have more power than most users will ever need, and phones come out so often that by the time your dream phone comes out, another one will have already been announced. There are exceptions to these rules, of course — both for computers and smartphones — but in general, stop crying over your current device and just upgrade. You’ll be a lot happier once you do.

Lossless Music Sounds Better Than MP3

While bit rate can make a difference in your music, there’s a pretty big misconception that as long as you have a good ear, you can hear the difference between lossless files and MP3. It takes a lot more than just careful listening — you’d need a very fine-tuned ear, some really high-end speakers, and a specific type of music, like classical or jazz. Don’t believe me? Take an ABX test with your own music files and find out for yourself. You may be surprised at the results. Of course, that doesn’t mean you should junk all those FLAC files — they’re still ideal if you want to convert that music to a new format later on.

Android Task Killers Are Necessary For Good Performance

Not only have we Android users perpetuated this myth, but lots of hardware manufacturers and mobile phone carriers will recommend you use a task killer to lengthen your battery life and speed up your phone. Not only will they do nothing for your battery life, but most are designed to solve problems that don’t actually exist (like running out of RAM). If you experience performance boosts with a task killer, it’s because you’re killing a task that’s either gone awry (in which case you’re better off just rebooting your phone) or because you’ve downloaded a poorly written app (in which case you should uninstall it).

Task killers can cause other problems with your phones, and you shouldn’t use them unless you’re using a very, very old phone with very, very outdated software. Check out our explainer on task killers to learn more, and if you want to speed up your phone, check out these other tried and true methods instead.

Jailbreaking Your Phone Is Illegal

The US Copyright office has officially said that jail breaking is completely legal to do with a device you own, as long as you aren’t using it to pirate apps, of course. That said, there are a lot of ways you’re probably breaking the law without knowing it, so read up on those if you’re curious. But if you were holding back on jail breaking your phone, now would be a great time to check out all its awesome, legal benefits.

Mac Users Don’t Need To Worry About Malware

Mac users have often touted their computers as “more secure” than Windows PCs, which is a very hotly-contested issue — some say OS X’s Unix underpinnings make it inherently more secure, while others claim it’s only because the Mac isn’t a big target for viruses. Either way, it’s important to note that while viruses aren’t as widespread as they are on Windows, Macs are far from immune — in fact, we’ve already seen a few instances of real Mac malware. Don’t let your choice of OS obscure the fact that safe browsing and common sense are the best protection against viruses and other malware. After all, just because that email virus didn’t infect you doesn’t mean you didn’t pass it on to your other Windows-using friends.

You Should Buy An Extended Warranty For New Gadgets

No matter how careful you are, we’ve all broken at least one gadget in our lives — and it may have tempted you to buy an extended warranty the next time. However, extended warranties aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Sometimes they only cover half the things that could go wrong, or sometimes the chances of your device failing are just plain slim. Instead, you’re better off setting up an extended warranty fund for yourself — as long as you aren’t really clumsy, you’ll probably come out ahead in the end.

You Should Fully Discharge Your Laptop Battery Every Time

Battery life is always at a premium these days, and you’ve probably heard a whole host of tricks for keeping your battery in tip top shape. This particular myth — that you should fully discharge your battery every time you use it — is left over from old nickel cadmium batteries that suffer from a memory effect no longer present in modern lithium batteries. Today’s batteries take less maintenance, but there are still some good ways you can prolong its lifespan, so check out our guide to battery care for more info.

Password-Protected Wi-Fi Networks Are Safe From Hackers

So you’ve heard about how important security is on public Wi-Fi networks, but a lot of people are still misinformed about what really constitutes a public network. Just because your network’s protected with a password doesn’t mean it’s secure. In the case of home networks, it means it’s secure from outside hackers, but if you head to a coffee shop or hotel, that network is still public. Anyone with a password can still connect to the network (like other coffee shop patrons) and potentially sniff your traffic.

So, unless you’re at home, always protect yourself when connected to Wi-Fi — you never know who else is connected.

Peerblock Will Keep You Safe And Anonymous On Bittorrent

A lot of BitTorrent users are looking to cover their tracks these days, and most are doing so by enabling encryption and using something like PeerBlock to keep unwanted eyes from watching their downloads. However, this does not make you anonymous in any way — encryption only keeps your ISP from throttling you, and PeerBlock is not even close to being foolproof. If you really want to stay anonymous, you have to use a VPN or a proxy service like BTGuard. You can also use a private tracker, which offers other benefits as well, but still isn’t quite as secure as other methods.

[Insert Tweak Here] Will Speed Up Your Computer

These are some of the worst myths out there. Everyone’s always looking for a quick, free way to drastically increase their computer’s speed, and a lot of them are loads of baloney. At best, they’ll do nothing, and at worst, they can actually degrade performance. If you really want some speed boosts, upgrade your hardware, or at least make sure you’re performing regular maintenance. With proper care, you should never need to do a clean install of Windows again.