Questions tagged [time]

For questions about the standard passage of time on objects/people/civilisations etc. Also consider the [time-keeping], [spacetime-dimensions], [alternate-history], [universe], [time-travel], or [time-manipulation] tags.

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195
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28answers
29k views

I'm stranded on an alien planet. How do I measure an earth year without a clock?

I just got shoved through a stargate onto a planet I don't know. I was told the gate would open again in exactly one Earth year. I wasn't carrying anything; I don't even have my watch. How do I know ...
175
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20answers
20k views

How might modern humans leave a message for 50,000 years?

I recently played my way through the Mass Effect game series, and one of the ideas I found most intriguing was the emphasis placed on "time capsules" sent from one cycle to the next: not only did ...
70
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25answers
25k views

How can you possibly stop/kill a person who has the ability to stop time? [closed]

Let's say we have a character (let's call him Nelson), who can stop time and let's pretend like it's possible and comfortable for him to do it. He can see and move in stopped time, can apply force to ...
60
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10answers
15k views

If reality were frame-rate based, how could we detect it?

Inspired by this question regarding reality as simulation and this question about a continuous time line, it made me wonder: if our time were indeed like a high frame-rate simulation, how could we ...
59
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27answers
12k views

How to Defeat a Precognitive Warrior? [closed]

My hapless wanderer (let's call her Alice) escaped the Wold forest only to stumble upon a large, featureless and dusty plane, at the center of which lies Castle Morrow, a fort populated by mechanical ...
58
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11answers
10k views

How Would a Post-Planetary Civilization Measure Time?

Our perception of time is steeped in the rhythms of our world, and blended with the most ancient of superstitions, decrees and mathematical conveniences. Thus we have days that track our world's ...
53
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25answers
9k views

What all stops working when I pause time?

Somewhat, not really related. In my young adult story, the main character has a mechanism that allows her to pause time, and do things while everything is frozen. I have no problem 'magic'ing the ...
49
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21answers
7k views

A small group recreating modern technology

Suppose a group of people get transported back in time (say 2500 years). Then, in a manner reminiscent of A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, they try to re-design modern technology. Assume ...
42
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18answers
5k views

How do you defeat a time-stopping Dark Lord? [closed]

Gentlemen, I am sure you all know why I have gathered you here today. As we all know, the Dark Lord who has appeared on the borders of our beloved realm of Average Magical Medieval Setting commands ...
42
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16answers
9k views

How do you tell time on a world with 9-year days?

On my world, the day lasts 9 years: 4.5 years of light, followed by 4.5 years of dark. The inhabitants of this world survive by migrating along the ring of dusk and dawn. How do these people tell ...
39
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11answers
5k views

A world without natural time measures

An intelligent race evolves on a planet with no moon or axial tilt, which is tidally locked to its star, and has a very hazy atmosphere. So there are no seasons, no day/night cycle, and the stars are ...
38
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13answers
9k views

What Time is it IN SPACE?

So, let's assume you've cobbled together an interplanetary empire without using transportation methods that violate causality or have the power to blow up stars. You may feel pretty proud of yourself, ...
37
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20answers
8k views

How would people tell time if it was always day?

So, if I have a civilization that lives in a hollow planet, with a sun in the middle. How would they tell time? The sun always shines, and it is a Constant Spring/summertime weather. They have animals ...
37
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16answers
11k views

What would an Earth with no timezones be like?

If we abolished the system of time zones, and everywhere followed UTC (or another arbitrary timezone), what would the possible advantages or disadvantages of this system be? If you can think of any ...
33
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8answers
5k views

Do different star systems experience time differently?

Somewhat in relation to this question - What could restrain post-singularity societies from spreading across the Galaxy? I'm assuming not all star systems move at the same velocity in relation to the ...
27
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9answers
8k views

What happens when the date becomes too long?

In regards to fantasy dates, they're usually set somewhere between 100 - 9000 W.E (Whatever), but rarely exceed 10,000. Is there a reason for this besides being more aesthetically pleasing? More ...
27
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15answers
8k views

Is it worth colonizing a planet that travels near the speed of light?

There is a planet that is orbiting around not a single star, but the core of a galaxy. It is independent of the other solar systems in the galaxy, but is affected by the center of mass of the core. It ...
26
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12answers
5k views

How might one create a room in which time flows faster?

And what would be needed to expand this effect, scaling up to the size of a city, or maybe a country? I've seen this question, and it seems that while one could do it with gravity, the effectiveness ...
25
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18answers
6k views

An immortal's measurement of time

A while ago I created a species of immortals that has existed since shortly (astronomically speaking) after the formation of the known universe. I've mostly ignored their society in the meantime as ...
24
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7answers
2k views

On a planet without seasons, how would people track years?

On a planet without axial tilt and with a roughly circular orbit, there would be no seasons. The climate on the planet would be, as far as I can tell, exactly the same at any time of year, and the ...
23
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16answers
7k views

Fantasy alarm clocks

In my fantasy story, it has come to a point in which it is completely necessary for lead to wake up at a certain time that his body is not accustomed to, however, this made me stop. It is crucial that ...
22
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6answers
7k views

How long lasts a second of eternity? [closed]

Given a famous tale, which can be found here: The king said, the third question is, how many seconds of time are there in eternity. Then said the shepherd boy, in lower pomerania is the diamond ...
20
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13answers
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Where should we store our brains?

I'm creating a story in which (almost) all of the world's now 10 billion people have voluntarily become "brains in jars." Considering that almost the entire population has chosen to do so, leaving ...
20
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7answers
3k views

How would rogue planet civilization track the passage of time?

If a species were to evolve on a rogue planet, how would they track the passage of time? Without day/night cycles or revolutions around a star, they couldn't use the typical methods that civilizations ...
18
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7answers
8k views

How long does an era last? What are the key factors in moving on?

In this story I'm writing, I start in a sword and sandal "age of myth" type setting, but as the centuries press on, it becomes medieval in nature. As even more time passes, there is even some ...
17
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8answers
5k views

Why would it be unfortunate for a day length to vary in a planet; other than that Java API developers need to work a few hours more? [closed]

Quoting from the Java Docs: Unfortunately, as the Earth rotates the length of the day varies. In addition, over time the average length of the day is getting longer as the Earth slows. I am ...
17
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5answers
2k views

What's the most convenient time of year in the USA to end the world?

This is a question I've been wondering about for a while. If I wanted to give my characters the best possible chance of surviving my story's Armageddon, what time of year should I schedule it for? ...
17
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3answers
4k views

If a person does not age can their hair and nails still grow?

In my story, those who are transported back in time do not age if they have to live through the years in the past. You don't start aging again until you reach the point in time you left. I was ...
17
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6answers
2k views

Time no longer passes except near intelligent creatures, how does the world continue?

Time stops nearly everywhere, time only continues in a area around creatures of a certain intelligence. The worlds population is suddenly thrown into darkness as time ceases throughout the universe ...
17
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7answers
2k views

How do date/time systems work for an entire solar system?

The species doesn't originate from the solar system, nor do they occupy a single planet or even have any colonies on the planets. They travel around in space ships throughout the solar system Do they ...
17
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5answers
3k views

Can I significantly shorten the days on a planet that can support human life?

I would like to have a world on which humans can live unaided -- they can breathe, the climate is workable, they can eat the local vegetation, etc -- but on which a complete day is substantially ...
17
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4answers
893 views

Stealing day(s) from my post-apoc bunker society

In a post-apoc world there are societies of people that live their entire lives in huge underground bunkers. They live there, as did their parents, as did their parents, and so forth. Their only ...
16
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12answers
5k views

A clock for interplanetary travel

Introduction See background information here. 1000 years after darkness fell on Old Earth, humanity is scattered throughout the solar system. Apart from the Harmonious Republic of Mars, there are ...
16
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12answers
2k views

Every now and again God puts us on pause. Can we detect this?

Imagine that God has many universes to deal with or just needs a break sometimes. He has a pause control. What plausible mechanism does God use to perform the pause without breaking the laws of ...
16
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5answers
2k views

Are there any software tools available to map the solar system hundreds of years from now?

I am writing a scifi novel based roughly four hundred years from now, and it occurred to me that the planets and other objects might not be quite where I need them to be for certain travel details to ...
15
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6answers
2k views

Asynchronous society

Our world has easily observed year, month and day cycles. They and their multiples, such as decades or weeks, and fractions, such as seasons, hours, minutes, and seconds are easily available and used ...
15
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2answers
2k views

How would common time-travel affect a language?

In most languages, the linear concept of time has led to similar concepts of past/present/future. Now, suppose that we have a human or human-like society in which time travel is fairly common, and it ...
14
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5answers
2k views

Can you build a relativistic clock?

Is it possible to build a clock that will be immune to relativistic effects on the passage of time? Can a clock exist that will always display the time of the place in which it was set? For instance, ...
14
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4answers
791 views

If only the sun's light went out, how long would it take for all living things to die out?

If by some form of magic, the sun went out, but the earth was still warm a.k.a the Earth did not just freeze and kill us all, who would die first, and how long would it take for all terrestrial living ...
14
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1answer
2k views

Can an interstellar body alter Earths Time?

In the movie Interstellar, they go to a planet where time flows by much slower for them while on it because of the increased gravity that planet is experiencing due to the nearby black hole. My ...
13
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7answers
7k views

Will a person be able to see when he stops time? [duplicate]

Suppose there is a person who owns a device which can stop and resume time. When the person stops the time, will he be able to see the things around him? I imagine not, because stopping time will stop ...
13
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3answers
1k views

How long is the subjective experience of eternity? [closed]

I watched a movie that was inspired by the classic myth of Sisyphus. It’s a well-worn story element to have a character be cursed to repeat a task or relatively brief passage of events for eternity. ...
13
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6answers
3k views

How to exploit a groundhog's day loop to do the most good? [closed]

I actually had been thinking of posting a groundhogs day question the same day that Tomorrow is Groundhog Day... For everyone. How does society respond? was first posted ironically, it's a sign! In ...
12
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4answers
5k views

Theoretically, can time be controlled locally?

I mean can time be controlled within an area or even a small portion of space? I would like to mention time-bombs, which either reverse time in a radius of explosion or take time forward. Also ...
11
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4answers
2k views

How to make this base-10 metric time concept work

I am trying to make a fake metric-time app to prank some friends when we take a trip to Canada soon and would like to know how I could make this work conceptually. I already know that the time is ...
11
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4answers
1k views

Universe-wide time system

Is there a time system that two spacecraft traveling in different galaxies could share? For example, a spacecraft jumps to an unknown location in the universe, far away. How could they synchronize? ...
11
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2answers
410 views

Can a planet's moon rise at the same time every night?

Is it possible for a planet's moon to always rise at the same time of the night? And in this way be used as a timekeeping device? What if there are two moons?
10
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4answers
3k views

Reasons for time dilation to happen on a habitable planet with same g force and not orbiting a black hole

I wish to clarify my doubts regarding time dilation Is it possible for a planet to be habitable like Edmund's planet from interstellar, which has somewhat similar gravitational force as Earth (9.8 m/...
10
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5answers
2k views

How would a century of disuse affect this structure?

In my story, an ancient building has been abandoned for a whole century without any care or use from the inhabitants around. They refrain from approaching it because they believe it is cursed, which ...
10
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6answers
2k views

How would a medieval person notice that they've traveled back in time?

How would a Renaissance-era shopkeeper, in a walled and paved city, notice that they've traveled back in time, right when they wake up, or soon after, like after 5 min and looking outside? No dead ...