"The future ain't what it used to be."

A Method of "Viewing" the Past

G

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I searched this forum and found no evidence of anyone who has a similar idea of "viewing" the past, so I present this one possible (although technically demanding) method of doing so. Consider that the sun's rays are constantly reflecting off the surface of our planet every day. These reflected rays travel through deep space until they strike other heavenly bodies, and reflect off of them. Some (very few) photons of light will eventually make it back to Earth. Now suppose one were able to collect those few reflected photons, and construct an image (sort of a bit-mapped image). If we could calculate which of the zillions of heavenly bodies out there form a parabola, with its focal point at the surface of the earth, we would be able to "see" Jesus, or Atilla the Hun, or Moses, etc. We would simply calculate how far out this "parabola" needs to be in order to view the desired moment in our past. This mathematically constructed parabola would act like a gigantic mirror in deep space. Because of the so few photons reaching us, it may take years or decades of computer time to construct a single image, but wouldn't it be worth it?
 
I read an SF Novel last year called "Alpha Centauri", the author escapes me at the moment.

In it, a colony of earthlings is looking for evidence of life in the Alpha Centauri system. They find several planets, in a complicated configuration, since Alpha Centauri is a trinary star system, with evidence of past civilizations, but no current one.

The earthlings have a device which can detect the residual patterns in matter at the qauntum level that have impressions or traces of photon interaction from events past. With this device they are able to glean images of events from the past and determine the nature of the extinct and departed civilizations.

I don't know if your method would work or not. The more I try to visualize it, the less I am able to say it might not.
 
I read an SF Novel last year called "Alpha Centauri", the author escapes me at the moment.

In it, a colony of earthlings is looking for evidence of life in the Alpha Centauri system. They find several planets, in a complicated configuration, since Alpha Centauri is a trinary star system, with evidence of past civilizations, but no current one.

The earthlings have a device which can detect the residual patterns in matter at the qauntum level that have impressions or traces of photon interaction from events past. With this device they are able to glean images of events from the past and determine the nature of the extinct and departed civilizations.

I don't know if your method would work or not. The more I try to visualize it, the less I am able to say it might not.

It really comes down to a detector sensitivity issue doesn't it.
 
Double post...SORRY ... Ignore this one, not sure how it happened. (nt)
 
Re:Re:A Method of "Viewing" the Past

Your idea is similar to an earlier idea on this board. The idea was that since the earth is moving so fast through the universe and in such a chaotic direction (revolving around the sun, which revolves around the center of our galaxy, etc.) that it might be that the earth would accidentally bump into photons sent out by an earlier earth.

When I get a chance, I want to try some calculations to see if this is at all possible.

Instead of looking for visual photons, we could also look for radio waves and listen in on earlier radio broadcasts. Morse code broadcasts might be particularly easy to pick up if we sweep by them on our way through the universe.
 
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