Vedin Barve, Prayaag Gupta, Ben Wang

Q. 1

In this short story, the presence of the chaos theory is obvious and isn't subtle, or hard to understand. The chaos theory states that a small decision or action has the capability to influence and change the future in a big way. This idea goes with the saying "Don't change the past!", in the time travel movies. In the story, Eckle accidentally does something that ultimately changed the rest of time. The way you know this happened was that when they returned back home after the incident, Eckle noticed that the sign that he saw when he entered the room before he left was different than the sign he saw when he came back. This ultimately shows that something changed in the past. Also in the short story, the characters were often referring to the chaos theory, not by name but rather by the idea. Travis states several times in the story that any change they made to the past could have a severe impact on the future. He stated several examples of how history would have been changed if they stepped one ONE mouse. "Step on a mouse and you crush the Pyramids. Step on a mouse and you leave your print, like a Grand Canyon, across Eternity. Queen Elizabeth might never be born, Washington might not cross the Delaware, there might never be a United States at all. So be careful. Stay on the Path. Never step off!", he stated. In conclusion, the idea of the chaos theory was present, and very obvious in "A Sound of Thunder".

Q. 2

The entire storyline can be summed up as a man made a mistake. He shouldn't have been tampering with the past and as a result it changed the entire future. This is an exact representation of what the chaos theory states, that if any changes are made in the past that shouldn't have happened, then that it would drastically change the future.

Q. 3

Here are some examples of how the chaos theory would be shown in the practical world. Suppose if you are a drug manufacturer, that makes pharmaceutical drugs, and you promote that they are all natural with no unnatural products in them. However, since you know that there is no way to get the desired results using only natural products, you put in just a little bit of unnatural products, and you call your product all natural. Soon, many people that take the drug begin to have severe allergic problems with the drugs and die of unknown causes. Soon lawsuits are piling up because some person found out that the drug actually did have unnatural ingredients. Because of these lawsuits that are being filed left, right and center, your reputation is severely tarnished and you will never be allowed to make pharmaceutical drugs for your customers ever again.

What if you didn't put these man-made substances in it? There would be no lawsuits, no articles about your reputation, and you wouldn't have to go through the public shaming process. But, if you hadn't put the unnatural products in your drug, it wouldn't have been as effective, leading to a decline in customers, but not a damaged reputation. You would also still be able to continue selling and producing the drug. See how that one small step made a huge difference on the future?

This example goes with the stories' message that you shouldn't mess anything up, or rather think carefully about what you are going to do, because each step that you make has an outcome on your life.

"Telling a truth and making someone cry is better than telling a lie and making someone smile."

How We Came Up With the Tag Line...

This matches the example in Q3, because what the drug manufacturer ultimately did was to lie to a mass number of people, to ultimately gain the most fame, and money. Looking at it from a chaos theory perspective, if you lie about something, the intensity of it over time is going to increase because after lying about something, the next step is someone figuring out about it, then someone would most likely confront you about this. When they confront you about this they are going to be really mad, because you hid the truth from them. Then after this step there is going to be a punishment phase where whoever you told the lie to would "punish" you, by in this case not buying your product or shutting down your manufacturing plant, in other cases by grounding you, or just not talking to you. Looking at an alternate universe if you told the truth, you would often be "praised" because of your veracity and just might have had a simple talk about what you did, instead of going through all of these steps of anger and hatred if you told a lie.
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