>>>"I think what Dr. Dick is saying when he requires his 'algorithm to be independent of time' is that he wants it to not depend on the direction you travel through all the data."
Well, if to "travel through data" doesn't take time, then what is meant by "travel"? And if you mean to say "all the constituents of the algorithm without the actual operation of the algorithm," then it's like you're saying, "all the constituents of the meal itself without the actual food." That is, remove time and you aren't talking about an algorithm at all. Take a moment and look up algorithm -- it's much more involved than set or data.
An 'algorithm independent of time' is meaningless. The only way I can see that an educated man would claim an algorithm "independent of time" is if that man was clueless as to the modern definition of time. It is very clear to me that Dick does not understand time.
However, maybe you (seemingly not an 'old dog' trying to learn 'new tricks) are not thusly doomed. Check it out:
No certain measurement we make possesses space, but no time -- or time, but no space. And anything where our human restrictions cause us to only know one aspect by sacrificing our knowledge of the other is a measurement where it is patently impossible (and dumb) to assign algorithms. This is why at insanely tiny regions of space-time the information available to us is called uncertain.
To better understand what we theorize about space-time, it might be easier if instead of envisioning 4 dimensions you envision two phenomena -- space and time. Anything that occupies space also occupies time. This is very difficult for some, because in philosophical terms time is hardly very analogous to space.
Suppose I were to say, "Earth exists." Consider this statement. . . "Earth exists" . . . two terms, and perhaps key to a better understanding of space-time.
To put it in "Alan" terms, "Earth exists" is a great model for spacetime because each half of this statement is somewhat analogous to one "half" of the idea space-time.
(1)"Earth" would be the thing that we might tend to hold as a function of space.(2)"exists" would be the activity that we might tend to hold as a function of time.
To speculate that some thing (1) might exist (2) without time (2) is just as nonsensical as speculating as to the existence (2) of a thing (1) without space (1).
I hope this helps explain the absurdity of an algorithm without time.