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  1. #21
    Second Lieutenant NickEast's Avatar
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    Default Re: Questions about Timelines and Stargate

    Quote Originally Posted by thekillman View Post
    My point is that Stargate doesn't really make that distinction. Many alternate universes seem to simply be some form of "what if the timeline was slightly altered". E.g. in Road Not Taken, the revelation of the stargate happened earlier, while in our universe that was postponed. Or meeting slightly different universes where some missions went differently etc.

    These are functionally indistinguishable from alternate timelines. If you entered such a universe after it is created, you couldn't tell what type it is.

    Though i'd also like to point out Stargate is not wholly consistent with timetravel as some seem to do the alternate universe stuff ( E.g. SGU's "Time") while others follow the "mess with current universe" style like Continuum or 1969.
    You don't really seem to get what I'm saying. "The Road Not Taken" is an alternate universe, because nobody goes back in time to actually reveal the Stargate's existence. It's simply a different outcome to the same choice. An alternate timeline is created when someone purposefully goes back in time to change it, and thus physically changes time. It's not a difference in outcome based on a choice, the universe itself is changed. Carter doesn't travel in time, she travels to an parallel universe, that's the distinction.

    An alternate/parallel universe is "what if the Stargate's existence was revealed?" An alternate timeline is "what happens if we go back in time to reveal the Stargate's existence?" The latter involves physical time travel, the former is just a different variation.

    Remember, this isn't about a distinction in physics. I'm making a distinction in fiction, same with the multiverse theory as it applies to fiction, not real physics. Stargate doesn't make an obvious in-universe distinction, but that doesn't matter. The writing itself makes that distinction, since the show uses both types distinctly.

  2. #22
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    Default Re: Questions about Timelines and Stargate

    I seriously need to do a re-watch of all 3 SG shows. It's been too long.

    Anyway, I think what nivao explained was actually explained by not one, but at least two characters during the show's run: the difference between alternate timelines (slightly changed version(s) of the "main" reality) and alternate universe (completely different realities featuring a whole different group of people and events involved).

  3. #23
    Second Lieutenant NickEast's Avatar
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    Default Re: Questions about Timelines and Stargate

    Quote Originally Posted by Mnikolic View Post
    I seriously need to do a re-watch of all 3 SG shows. It's been too long.

    Anyway, I think what nivao explained was actually explained by not one, but at least two characters during the show's run: the difference between alternate timelines (slightly changed version(s) of the "main" reality) and alternate universe (completely different realities featuring a whole different group of people and events involved).
    This can also apply in reverse. Carter explained one time, I think it was in "Politics" after Daniel explains about his experience during the episode before, that theoretically there can be any number of alternate universes which can range from being just slightly different, to being vastly different (e.g. where Germany won WW2 for example). Same with alternate timelines, they can range from small changes in the timeline (the difference between the original and the third timeline in "Moebius" and "Continuum"), to vastly different (Ra taking Earth's Stargate, and thus having no Stargate Program, or Atlantis not flooding so the Atlantis Expedition actually survives).

  4. #24
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    Default Re: Questions about Timelines and Stargate

    Quote Originally Posted by nivao View Post
    ...or Atlantis not flooding so the Atlantis Expedition actually survives.
    Or the Icarus planed not being attacked by the Lucian Alliance, or someone stopping Telford to get the crew to dial Earth while the ship is re-charging. We could go on and on and just list other cases and the Stargate program wouldn't be even the reason for the majority of them.

  5. #25
    Captain Xaeden's Avatar
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    Default Re: Questions about Timelines and Stargate

    Quote Originally Posted by thekillman View Post
    It's funny that people never seem to consider that Hitler survived literally dozens of assassination attempts right down to having a bomb go off a few meters away from him. And that finding a disenfranchised WWI soldier somewhere in Europe wearing a gas mask would be incredibly difficult.
    Well, most often the scenario involves Hitler as a baby/child because it adds another moral layer. When going after Hitler as an adult sometimes fiction will give the time traveler the ability to transport to a specific place, so he/she can appear in Hitler's office or residence. Of course, requiring the time traveler to track him down and arrange for a way to get to him would be more dramatic since, as you note, that's easier said than done.

    Though i'd also like to point out Stargate is not wholly consistent with timetravel as some seem to do the alternate universe stuff ( E.g. SGU's "Time") while others follow the "mess with current universe" style like Continuum or 1969.
    Could you elaborate on what it is about "Time" that makes you think it followed a different formula than any other time travel story in Stargate save "1969?"

  6. #26
    First Lieutenant Chaka-Z0's Avatar
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    Default Re: Questions about Timelines and Stargate

    Quote Originally Posted by Xaeden View Post
    Well, most often the scenario involves Hitler as a baby/child because it adds another moral layer. When going after Hitler as an adult sometimes fiction will give the time traveler the ability to transport to a specific place, so he/she can appear in Hitler's office or residence. Of course, requiring the time traveler to track him down and arrange for a way to get to him would be more dramatic since, as you note, that's easier said than done.
    If I may, there could also be the possibility that ultimately, changing events such as killing Hitler could do... absolutely nothing in the long run. Maybe Himler would've taken his place, he was actually worse than Adolf when it came to anti-antisemitism and he's the architect behind concentration camps. Never forget that Germany was such in a crappy situation that literally any hate-speech politicians could've accomplished the same results than Hitler.

    There is also a theory, which I more or less agree with, that history repeats itself in cycles. Civilizations advance to a certain point, disappears or gets wiped out (Atlantians, Egyptians, etc.). Over and over again.

    If you think about it, the Egyptians figured out the three forces of flight (lift-thrust-drag) as shown in hieroglyphs. They had automated water saws to cut stones. They had one of the greatest trade empire ever made. Most people assume these folks were primitive, but they were very advanced in ''ancient knowledge'' and what they had at their disposition.

  7. #27
    Captain Xaeden's Avatar
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    Default Re: Questions about Timelines and Stargate

    Quote Originally Posted by Chaka-Z0 View Post
    If I may, there could also be the possibility that ultimately, changing events such as killing Hitler could do... absolutely nothing in the long run. Maybe Himler would've taken his place, he was actually worse than Adolf when it came to anti-antisemitism and he's the architect behind concentration camps. Never forget that Germany was such in a crappy situation that literally any hate-speech politicians could've accomplished the same results than Hitler.
    Absolutely. There are levels to it that I didn't address in my overview and this is one of them. The concern that someone else will exploit the situation to create a similar or worse future is definitely an issue. Also, imagine what would have happened if the war was delayed, leading to scientific advances that made it easier to develop nuclear weapons. The world got very lucky that they were developed at the tail end of the war instead of during it.

    The reason I chose to focus on all the people who would cease to exist is because it's true regardless of how things play out. If someone worse than Hitler who kills more people or someone better than him who kills less comes to power the time traveler is still ending the existence of a massive number of lives born in the aftermath of whenever the murder of Hitler takes place. Using time travel to stop atrocities only has a possibility to spare more lives than it wipes out of existence if the time travel happens within a short period after the atrocity. The greater the atrocity and the further in time away from it that you get, the larger the consequence on the people born after that event will be.

    There is also a theory, which I more or less agree with, that history repeats itself in cycles. Civilizations advance to a certain point, disappears or gets wiped out (Atlantians, Egyptians, etc.). Over and over again.
    Yeah, people forget the mistakes of history and often need to repeat them in order to learn them. It's like the adage that children can't be told what not to do as they need to learn not to do things by experiencing those things themselves.
    Last edited by Xaeden; December 20th, 2018 at 11:38 PM.

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