Marty! We gotta go back to the future!!
September 10, 2003 6:51 AM   Subscribe

A vision of the future? "Although there is debate over the exact date it started, on November 02, 2000, a person calling themselves Timetravel_0, and later John Titor, started posting on a public forum that he was a time traveler from the year 2036." What follows are tales of the "future" involving civil and global nuclear war, schematics for a "time machine", and an IBM 5100 computer from 1974. (Grain of salt not included.)
posted by emptybowl (30 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Commentary from Something Awful puts this in perspective:
So there's a civil war in America in which the country folk rise up against the fiendish city slickers. Russia, obviously being a part of this civil war, decides to launch nukes at the U.S., China, and Europe as a whole. ... Despite the loss of three billion lives worldwide, things return to normal almost immediately, and within another twenty years, the scientists who have nothing to do, ... perfect time travel. Man, it's a good thing all of those brilliant scientists and their labs were all based out in the open country, nowhere near any of the major cities, or they might not have been able to send some randomly chosen guy back in time to chat on the internet!
posted by moonbiter at 7:04 AM on September 10, 2003

Man, now I look like a chump. You don't read SA for one weekend, and look what happens....
posted by emptybowl at 7:11 AM on September 10, 2003

I still think it's a good Mefi post.
posted by moonbiter at 7:15 AM on September 10, 2003

This site is hilarious.

Like this: No, the ice caps are not melting any faster than they are now. There is also far less smog and industrial waste in 2036.

So why? When I'm with my parents, I live in a community made up of "tree houses" on a large river in Florida. The river floods sometimes and we have access to he Gulf. Most of our neighbors make a living off the sea or in moving cargo by boat.
What community & river, no names in the future?

Best argument heard why time travel never happens: we quit existing before the technological power needed becomes available. Proof: no pictures, our society loves taking pictures, souvenirs.
posted by thomcatspike at 7:17 AM on September 10, 2003

I'm glad to see it's so easy for to dismiss the Middle East. Yes, I suppose it is a no brainer but pretty soon it will be a "no arrmer" and a "no legger".


Great link, emptybowl.
posted by biscotti at 7:21 AM on September 10, 2003

"It might also interest you to know that the day of worship is Saturday, the day God meant to be the Sabbath and the 10 commandments have been restored to the "10" that God gave us."

So in the future, the Seventh Day Adventists have won?
posted by brownpau at 7:24 AM on September 10, 2003

I agree the site is hilarious .. the questions he is posed are the funniest.......

What would you say to any world leaders who might be reading this right now?

Do you still have an American flag? What does it look like in 2036?

Is it still safe to fish in 2036?

Does anything happen in the year 2012? I've heard stories about the world ending.

I wont go on.........
posted by kenaman at 7:24 AM on September 10, 2003

Thanks, moonbiter. My fragile ego has now been spared. :)

What I find most confusing (HA!) is that there's constant references to his mission being the retrieval of the computer from 1974, yet no mention as to why he's in 2000-2001. (It's possible that there is and I missed it. I am caffine-less this morning.) And no mention of the largest terrorist attack to date on American soil that would happen 6 months after he "returned to his time"?

You know, I'm beginning to believe that this time traveler may not be on the level....
posted by emptybowl at 7:29 AM on September 10, 2003

So he should be alive right now and age 5... but where is he?
posted by dirtylittlemonkey at 7:31 AM on September 10, 2003

Titor, responding to a question about using a time machine as a weapon:

Yes I suppose that is one thing you could do with it. I could also cut my hand off with a power saw or heat up a crowd of people with a microwave.

Somehow, this sounds familiar.
posted by trondant at 7:35 AM on September 10, 2003

1.21 GIGAWATTS!!!!!!!!!
posted by scalz at 7:58 AM on September 10, 2003

from one of jontitor posts:

For a change, I have a question for all of you. I want you to think very hard. What major disaster was expected and prepared for in the last year and a half that never happened?

posted by dabitch at 8:05 AM on September 10, 2003

Uh oh, he's a Davidian, as in a Waco David (Koresh)ian. As in sympathetic to the Oklahoma City bombers. As in completely fucking nuts.
posted by mooncrow at 9:06 AM on September 10, 2003

What is the extent of Presidential power in 2036?

50. The office of President is far more diluted and decentralized than it is here. The powers of the national government are more defined and reside more at the county and state level.

What is the new government like in 2036 compared to the current one?

51. I think the new government is good. However, since the concept of nationally subsidized welfare is gone, most people here may not appreciate it.

I'm just guessing, but "John Titor" might be a Republican who did a lot of acid while reading Heinlein. I'm guessing that it's Al Haig.
posted by Mayor Curley at 9:08 AM on September 10, 2003

Religion is taken seriously and everyone can multiply and divide in their heads.

So that's how we lost the ability ...
posted by WolfDaddy at 9:12 AM on September 10, 2003 [1 favorite]

If the field bends the laser like this as alleged (from the third link), why is our view of the window frame in the background not similarly distorted? Or our view of the guy with the cigar, for that matter? Selective gravity?


Great set of trolls though, especially that he kept it going for over three months.
posted by Cerebus at 9:17 AM on September 10, 2003

I am relieved to discover that xerox machines from the future still emit crappy incomprehensible reproductions.
posted by lsd4all at 9:19 AM on September 10, 2003

I don't believe that knowing a possible future makes it happen. You are capable of changing your worldline for the better right now. None of the things I have said will be a surprise. They were set in motion ten, twenty, even thirty years ago. Are you really surprised to find out that Iraq has nukes now or is that just BS to whip everyone up into accepting the next war?

I want to believe! :)
posted by LouReedsSon at 9:30 AM on September 10, 2003

It's a freakin' radio in a waterproof box.
posted by Cerebus at 9:41 AM on September 10, 2003

Reminds me of this.

Are you really surprised to find out that Iraq has nukes now or is that just BS to whip everyone up into accepting the next war?

Holy crap. Posted in 2001!
posted by drinkcoffee at 11:38 AM on September 10, 2003

Unfortunately, there were not very many suitable vehicles around in 2036 and I sold the car when I arrived in 2000.
(This isn't a prediction but it occurred to me that someone is driving around in a car that is not from this time.)

Luckily, the car should be pretty easy to spot. Just look for the guy throwing banana peels into the Mr. Fusion on his DeLorean.
posted by fatbobsmith at 12:44 PM on September 10, 2003

He didn't happen to mention that damn dirty apes run the world in 2036, did he? Dear God, please tell me he didn't...
posted by fishbulb at 2:43 PM on September 10, 2003

Some people have too much time on their hands. Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much.
posted by Ynoxas at 2:53 PM on September 10, 2003

"... and our scientists were clever enough to develop something called 'Soylent Green,' which resolved the food shortage."

actucally, I enjoyed this link a great deal
posted by Elvis at 2:56 PM on September 10, 2003

Uh oh, he's a Davidian, as in a Waco David (Koresh)ian. As in sympathetic to the Oklahoma City bombers. As in completely fucking nuts.

I don't see how you can conflate the two. I mean, there's a difference between thinking the government shouldn't invade and destroy a compound just because its leader has a messianic complex, and thinking it's okay to murder civilians as a retaliatory act.

Other than that, I found the link pretty fascinating, actually.
posted by nath at 5:32 PM on September 10, 2003

Makes that Nostradamus jerk look almost like a Wise Man. Good for a lark, and hunting & pecking for clues to his political/philosophical leanings.
posted by davidmsc at 6:28 PM on September 10, 2003

John Titor's pronouncements are especially amusing read aloud in the voice of Dale Gribble.
posted by gamera at 7:43 PM on September 10, 2003

So he should be alive right now and age 5... but where is he?

Watchin' his future self get it on with his own mother, of course.
posted by soyjoy at 8:01 PM on September 10, 2003

Look, poke holes in this all you want, but c'mon, when was the last time you did anything quite this creative??
posted by kevspace at 10:17 PM on September 10, 2003

kevspace, stop spoiling my fun!

His answers are great, I'm reading them (internally) as more of a stereotypical 'Jesus' voice (but kind of shifty and nervous), the people posting questions seem to be Dale Gribbles to a man.

From John's responses to posted questions;

I'm not familiar with the term Psionics. I'll look it up and see if we just have another word for it.

When you say "teleportation", I assume you mean public transportation.

Yes, there are "gay" people in 2036.

I don't know what you mean by VR?

It's hard to say what the exact racial make up of the U.S. is.

Yes, there are same sex marriages but it's not very common

And this is my absolute fave...

John mentions that he has no idea what GINGER is but he mentions media hype and alludes to IT not amounting to much
posted by backOfYourMind at 7:36 AM on September 11, 2003

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