Time is Accelerating, Study Finds
London, November 29, 2010 -- Do simple things like tying your shoes, brushing your teeth or sitting through someone else's wedding seem to take longer than they once did? Do you generally wake up in the morning feeling cranky and bleary-eyed rather than refreshed and well-rested? Do vacations seem to flit by like a millisecond-long, scarcely remembered dream?
A new study by the Society of Unaffiliated Local Chronographers (SULC), an international union of scientists who are paid by the hour to study time, find that many of these seeming inconsistencies can be explained by the fact that time itself is accelerating at an alarming and increasing rate.
According to Dr. Herbert Tiktoch, president of SULC and a leading investigator into what the union calls universal time inflation, "time has been accelerating since the beginning of recorded, well, time. The root causes of the acceleration of time are not well established yet, although we think it may have to do with the possible contraction of space, a potential reversal of the Big Bang effect. If the universe were to contract at an increasing rate, time would accelerate along with it. We can't verify this possibility with any instruments at our disposal at this time, unfortunately, and if it's correct, the amount of time we have left to confirm it is shrinking, too."
Dr. Tiktoch said that time's acceleration explains a large number of otherwise inexplicable phenomena that have confounded historians and behavioural anthropologists for decades.
"One of the first and perhaps most everyday behavioral issues we were able to explain with the time inflation hypothesis," said Dr. Tiktoch, "is the bewilderingly slow pace of the elderly—when driving, trying on hats, relating anecdotes, baking. The simple fact is that for someone, Grandpa, for instance, who is 80 years of age, time has been accelerating for four times as long as for someone who is only twenty."
"The resulting temporal relativity," he continued, "when, for example, the elder party attempts to perform a task that would be accomplished much more quickly by the younger party, is in reality a simple side-effect of the changing shape of the universe."
Other phenomena explained by the Tiktoch time inflation theory are: summer and winter vacations that seemed to last years when one was a child, but that now seem to blip by in seconds; the inflationary influence time exerts on international currency markets due to the time is money axiom; and the rapid flight of time when experiencing enjoyable activities.
"Paradoxically, converse effects–that is, that pleasant activities seem to go very quickly, while unpleasant activities take what seems like a very long time—are explained by the effect of heightened serotonin production in the brain, which creates an internal temporal-magnetic field that warps space-time within a highly localized subjectivity matrix," Dr. Tiktoch explained.
Time's acceleration also explains the remarkable productivity of some of the greatest artists, scientists and musicians in history.
"Shakespeare's entire body of work was written in less than thirty years," said Dr. Tiktoch. "Leonardo da Vinci's fantastic spectrum of achievement in arts and sciences was accomplished in only fifty. Mozart was only 35 when he died, but look at the enormous opus he left behind. The only explanation for this kind of superhuman prolificacy is that time during their respective centuries moved much, much slower than it does now."
With the current pace of time, Dr. Tiktoch added, it's no surprise that hardly anyone ever produces anything of lasting value anymore. "There simply isn't time," he said.
Because of the inflation of time, Western life spans today, which when measured in years are significantly longer than they were a mere hundred years ago, are actually much shorter.
"You clock a larger number of years, but each year contains approximately 46% less time than it did a century ago," said Dr. Tiktoch. "From that perspective, a man who dies at the age of ninety has actually lived roughly 10% less than someone who died at the age of forty in the year 1910."
According to Dr. Tiktoch, "the only antidote to time inflation is, I'm afraid, misery. It's not much fun, but it does slow things down."
By Ion Zwitter, Avant News Editor
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