: one billionth of a second
: a very short time
The two basic definitions of Nanosecond present to us a word that fits perfectly into both science and science fiction. A precise measurement of time and a subjective measurement of a brief moment in time.
Being able to measure with precision to the billionth of a second and beyond has helped mankind understand and master the concepts of space travel. Precise measurements give us satellites that flyby and measure the other worlds and moons around us.
And in your science fiction writing a long series of very short periods of time are woven into the tapestry of your story. Precision isn’t as critical as creativity and sending your story down the path you want the readers to take. This is good, as I imagine most readers would bore quickly of a story that had to follow a rigid, precise order.
Creativity allows you to let the background of the story handle the time line and rigid order while you reach out and grab the attention of the reader filling the short periods of time with the world of your creation. Sometimes, a nanosecond can really make all the difference.