Friday, December 23, 2016

"Are We Living in a Computer Simulation?"

Maybe one just hacked by Russian Putinists?

Clara Moskowitz, Are We Living in a Computer Simulation? 04/072016:

A popular argument for the simulation hypothesis came from University of Oxford philosopher Nick Bostrum in 2003, when he suggested that members of an advanced civilization with enormous computing power might decide to run simulations of their ancestors. They would probably have the ability to run many, many such simulations, to the point where the vast majority of minds would actually be artificial ones within such simulations, rather than the original ancestral minds. So simple statistics suggest it is much more likely that we are among the simulated minds.

And there are other reasons to think we might be virtual. For instance, the more we learn about the universe, the more it appears to be based on mathematical laws. Perhaps that is not a given, but a function of the nature of the universe we are living in. “If I were a character in a computer game, I would also discover eventually that the rules seemed completely rigid and mathematical,” said Max Tegmark, a cosmologist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). “That just reflects the computer code in which it was written.” ...

And if someone somewhere created our simulation, would that make this entity God? “We in this universe can create simulated worlds and there’s nothing remotely spooky about that,” [philosopher David] Chalmers said. “Our creator isn’t especially spooky, it’s just some teenage hacker in the next universe up.”

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