By Sam Colt, RFE/RL
Iranian scientist Ali Razeghi has registered a time machine with the country’s Center for Strategic Inventions. Razeghi, 27, cites algorithms as the source of the device’s ability to "predict five to eight years of the future life of any individual with 98 percent accuracy."
The Iranian device sounds slightly more modest in scale than the time-traveling DeLorean from "Back to the Future," with its inventor claiming it can fit into a small case.
“My invention easily fits into the size of a personal computer case,” said Razeghi, “It will not take you into the future, it will bring the future to you.”
Razeghi happens to be the managing director of the Center for Strategic Inventions, where he has 179 other devices registered under his name.
"I have been working on this [time machine] project for the last 10 years," he says.
The "time machine" was presented not only as a tool for individuals but also as a resource for governments seeking to preempt major crises.
"Naturally, a government that can see five years into the future would be able to prepare itself for challenges that might destabilize it," he is quoted as saying.
Friends and family have reportedly criticized Razeghi for "trying to play God" with the device, which he say she began working on at the tender age of 17.
But Razeghi is quick to fend off those who might want to get their hands on his powerful piece of technology.
"The Americans are trying to make this invention by spending millions of dollars on it," he says. "The reason that we are not launching our prototype at this stage is that the Chinese will steal the idea and produce it [by the] millions overnight."
Despite Razeghi's confident claims, most Iran watchers will likely be treating his announcement with a certain amount of skepticism.
In February, bloggers quickly pointed out that a photo of Iran's new Qaher-313 stealth fighter jet flying over a mountain range was faked. The plane’s shadows and lighting suggested that it was photographed indoors. The background turned out to be a stock image of Iran’s Mount Damavand. Other bloggers also noted that the design of the aircraft made aviation experts doubt whether it was even a real plane.
In 2012, Iran released a photo of Koker 1, which it unveiled as the world’s first drone capable of vertical takeoff and landing. Internet commentators promptly linked the device to a group of engineers from Chiba University in Japan, who had actually invented the drone in 2008.
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