A Word About “Time”

rogersgeorge on February 4th, 2017

Unlike most things, time flows in only one direction. Physicists say that all the equations of quantum dynamics, and many other things, work both forward and backwards. Think of the commutative rule in high school math: 3×4=4×3 and 2y=x is the same as x=2y. But time goes only forward. Keep this in mind when you write about time. Here’s an example of the National Oceanography Centre doing it backwards.

How has the ocean changes since the Miocene?

The ANTSSS group photo

On Wednesday NOC scientists set out on a 60-day expedition to the Eastern Ross sea, Antarctica, to investigate how ocean circulation and environmental conditions have changed from the present to the Middle Miocene.

Okay, first, the typo in the headline. Should be “changed.” Have I ever mentioned that you should proofread???  Harrumpf.

Now look at that from-to construction in the text (emphasis mine). “From” is where you start, “to” is where you’re going. They have it backwards! Sounds like an exciting adventure, though!

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A teacher gets it wrong, then right

rogersgeorge on January 20th, 2014

Two essentially unrelated Luann comics, except they feature the same two characters, first in 2006, the second in 2007. First, Miss Phelps gets one of my pet peeves wrong:


“Lies” happens to be correct. However, she catches the error in the next comic:


And, to answer Mr. Fogarty’s question in the first strip, the future was considered to be behind us by the ancient Greeks. They pictured us as moving backwards through time, because you can see the past, but you can’t see the future!