What's Happening

This is discussion archived from a time before the current discussion method was installed.

  • Hey, neither does his tail and other stuff that changes with him. It would make more sense if it was a explicit magical transformation, in explaining why he can't keep his arm.
Natter, right there.

Removing the 8-bit theater example since it is only making fun of Load-Bearing Boss and not No Ontological Inertia.
Robert: Doctor Who isn't a good example. The debate is whether the Time Lords were merely destroyed or erased from time, so they never existed. If they never existed, a claim made most clearly in some of the spin-offs, then the persistence of the things they did is a paradox.

Magic follows its own rules, so no ontological inertia is quite reasonable, not a fan fallacy.

Red Shoe: Whether or not the effects would persist were they "erased from time" is a question of Ontological Inertia (I think most paradoxes involve questions of ontological inertia: if I kill my grandfather, do I cease to exist, or do I continue to exist because of my ontological inertia? For me to cease to exist, either my inertia is revoked, or Time Itself must exert some kind of force — which acts outside of time — to overcome my inertia). But I am specifically thinking of questions like "If the Time Lords were destroyed, does the Doctor have infinite regenerations now?", which can't really be classed in the paradox category.

Robert: That specific question is fallacious, but if the Time Lords were erased from time - unclear - the only way to avoid a paradox is to have no ontological inertia in meta-time. If the Fendahl was imprisoned by Time Lords who never existed, that's a paradox, just like killing your actual biological grandfather.

Red Shoe: I will confess to some sloppy writing. This whole Ontological Inertia thing, or the lack thereof, is sometimes a Trope, and sometimes a fallacy. It's a fallacy when fans assume it not to exist but it does, and it's a trope when it actually fails to exist (As in the Load-Bearing Boss, or the magic-based examples). Also the "If you kill the lead vampire/werewolf/alien, all the rest die too" examples.

Robert: Then this page needs to distinguish between the two cases. With magic, and some forms of temporal paradox, the trope is justified. In other cases, it's fallacious, an important distinction.

Space Ace: Speaking of temporal paradoxes (paradoxii?), I always thought the "kill your own grandfather" thing was ricockulous. Matter doesn't think, therefor you won't disappear, even if you kill your own grandfather. The more likely outcome would be returning to a future where you never existed. Something I think would be more amusing in fiction, too.

Ununnilium: ...I fail to see what the one has to do with the other. But my favorite is definitely splitting off alternate universes whenever you time-travel. Satisfies all kinds of problems.

HeartBurn Kid: @Space Ace: Ahh, but if you never existed, how could you have killed your own grandfather? After all, you never existed. So Grandpa lives to beget Dad, and Dad begets you, and suddenly you exist again, so you go back in time and kill your own grandfather, making it so that you don't exist. So now, you never existed, which means your grandfather lives... and this is why I hate time travel stories.

Firedracomian: Admittedly, I haven't played Ocarina of Time in a while, but I don't remember Link going back in time and discovering Ganon was defeated in the past. The only celebration they had was in the future, after he actually beat Ganon.

Fast Eddie: Couldn't find ...
("What? I thought that was just Angel's lame fantasy!")
.. in the transcript of Angel eppy "Awakening", so pulled it as an out-of-place comment.

Zeke: Ah, but that's because you looked at the wrong episode. "Awakening" is where the fantasy itself took place. Angelus' line, which I've restored, is in "Salvage."

Fast Eddie: Cool. Reads nicer as a character-quote, too.

Chad M: Removed the following:

  • Due to quantum physics mumbo jumbo, any object has a given probability to simply vanish at any given moment. Keep in mind these odds are ridiculously small. For example, it's theorized that a proton has a 50% chance of decaying after 10^64 years. So you don't exactly need to buy nonexistance insurance. However, this will be a serious problem for people far, far, far into the future.
    • If you know anything about probability, you should know that's not true (winning the lottery once doesn't mean a reduced chance of winning it the second time) A penny does not have a memory.
    • Indeed. However, certain quantum particles exist only when observed. 'Observed' means contact with other quantum particles, however. Quantum physics is one factors in making Science sound like Hermetic Magic to the uninitiated.
    • Sorry, but you're wrong. It has a 50% chance of already having decayed after 10^64 years. It's like the probability of "a coin landing heads at least once after flipping it 20 times." Similarly (on average) one in 10^64 protons in the universe decay every year (slightly more than 1 proton from 1 atom in the observable universe). And it turns into energy when it happens, so the Matter-Energy ratio in the universe doesn't change.

There may be a correct example in here but as it stands it's a natter magnet.

Saiyan5nine-tails: Well, No Ontological Inertia could be directly attributed to objects and events that go against the standard laws of physics, which magic personifies on most of it's existence. Magic and it's source can be likened to a power plant and a city: when the power source (caster/power plant) is destroyed, de-activated, or cut off from the known dimension (magical imprisonment, a more permanent spell), it sends a chain reaction that shuts down power to every house powered by the plant, or due to magical causes, anything unnaturally altered by magic (life-draining, transformation) is returned to the state it existed as before, with physical damage remaining as is.

Great Limmick: Regarding the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen example... Since Griffin remains invisible even when the individual molecules in his body are replaced by the nutrients in the food he eats, his invisibility is presumably the result of some biological process, so his blood could be gradually becoming visible as the individual blood cells die.