In honor of the 50th anniversary of “Doctor Who,” here are some stories about some people who claimed to have unlocked the secret of time travel…or maybe not.
• In 2000, a mysterious man named “John Titor” started posting messages on Internet paranormal discussion forums claiming to be a time traveler from the year 2036. He’d been sent back in time by the U.S. government, he said, to fix software bugs that were making computers in the future malfunction. Titor not only showed off pictures of his time machine (a modified 1967 Camaro), but detailed the scary world events between the years 2000 and 2036. For example, from 2004 to 2008, the second American Civil War was waged; that the 2004 Olympics were the last ones ever held; and that in 2015, Russia started World War III by dropping nuclear bombs on China, the U.S., and most of Europe. Three billion people died and all major world governments crumbled. In March 2001, Titor claimed his IT duties were complete and he “returned” to 2036…which means he never posted on Internet forums again. Obviously, you can figure out that Titor’s details of the future history weren’t quite accurate, making this a hoax. But who was behind it? Nobody knows.