Traveling: Teleportation and un-learning to learn [2/7]

Recap: Post my journey on how to solve for traveling, I came to the conclusion that jetpacks are probably not the way to go. Here I am, to take things forward.

My first lesson: Problem solving is not about the most evident or the most innovative solutions, it is about understanding the problem the best. 
Now, I had the huge task of clearing my brain out and actually listing down the issue at hand. What did I dislike (note: I am toning the hate a bit down because emotions cloud your judgement) the most about traveling. I came across a few broad points:

  • Time, I waste. 
  • Time..
  • Time....
That was it. I didn't actually want to travel faster or reach somewhere sooner. I didn't want to spend time on it AT ALL. I would love to travel, follow a path in the woods, walk on a trail of crushed brown leaves, but that is something I would do for pleasure. I don't want to do all of that while I am wanting to get to office or to the place where I would do the same. I knew my problem finally:

Problem Statement: I don't want to spend time in covering distance from one place to another.
 I have no issues with the idea of travel, but I want it on my terms.

Now that I knew what my issue was, I again started searching for possible solutions and the most evident answer to that in terms of magic was 'apparition', which in context of science is called Teleportation.

If only the definition was as simple as this Wikipedia. 

This was exactly what I needed, transfer myself between two points without the need to travel the same space or in my problem statement: spend time on it.

I started reading and watching YouTube videos extensively on this subject, with the objective of understanding the practicality and science behind this idea because at first it was all about science for me. Coming from a place where actions are valued more than thought, I always was more interested in solving the problem rather than exploring the philosophical questions attached to it, but learning about teleportation was an eye opener for me. It was like one of those debates which made me question the very existence and definition of human life. 

Teleportation - The concept:
Our current understanding of how things get from one place to another involves a few basic principles:
  • Matter has to travel
  • The travel needs to be between A & B
  • Matter needs to travel at some speed
Our initial idea of a jetpack was the same, create a vehicle which helps you cover some distance in a shorter period of time. This idea hasn't changed much for a layman's understanding of teleportation, but here is where the twist comes in - Teleportation is not a layman's subject, it is a scientific dream and you truly understand it when you get to the details.

Details of the current understanding: The general scientific idea of teleportation can be expressed by looking at the definition itself. It says, 
'...transfer of matter or energy from one point to another...'
How most of us understand teleportation is, you enter into a portal and you get accelerated at the speed of light to reach your destination and exit at the other end. This sounds simple but surely isn't, following are the few limitations of the same idea, or as I would like to call them questions of science:

  • Your body probably (read: for sure) can't take that speed: Speed of light is a LOT of speed. A space shuttle needs 7900 m/sec to escape the earth, it takes months to get astronauts to get ready for that. The speed of light is 37,975 times that speed. That's really fast. The acceleration is enough to crush pretty much everything out of you.
  • Energy required: The energy required to transfer a person to 1/10th of the speed of light is equivalent to 1billion liters of gasoline, which will come in three super tankers and will cost you a billion euros. [interesting source here]
  • In Earth transportation: The diameter of the earth is 12,742 Kms. So, if you want to reach the farthest place on earth within a second, then you'd need to be accelerated to 12.742 Million m/sec. Which is again, a lot of speed for your body (1600 times the speed a space shuttle needs btw) and 42.5 million euros (quite a lot of money again). 
I did not give the issues with Jetpacks in the previous article because, those are imaginable. In case of Teleportation, its a little difficult to do that and hence I gave a little more taste of the disappointment I was facing. This was the second probable door which was shut.

My second lesson: No, you can't magically get success the second time. It takes more tries. 

My third lesson: You know nothing, Jon Snow. There is so much in to learn and understand in this Universe, so get out there and explore. 

Next stop: How un-learning this understanding of how we 'travel' helped me accelerate my thought process, ask both philosophical and scientific questions without being a quantum physicist or an ignorant doofus.


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