[extropy-chat] Be[ing] or Not Be[ing]

David Lubkin extropy at unreasonable.com
Sun Apr 18 16:23:28 UTC 2004

Hal wrote:

>The simulation argument is not scientific.  It is not meant to be.
>It is not falsifiable.  But that doesn't make it pointless.

Harvey replied:

>Agreed.  So I wish people would stop claiming that it is more *scientific* 
>than a religion.

The categories of simulation arguments and religions are not inherently 
unscientific or untestable, although most instances of each are in 
practice. A religious or simulation theorist could make specific 
predictions that, if observationally confirmed, provide supporting evidence 
that something extraordinary is at play, e.g., "For the next 10 hours, the 
speed of light will be 205,000 km/sec."

Whether that agent is labeled SysOp, God, or a Power is irrelevant; they 
are equivalent terms.

>I question the whole statistical assumption that we are equally likely to 
>have been born any universe or simulation, so that if there are more 
>simulations than universes we are statistically likely to appear in them.

This and your variation are equally premature, as are any assertions about 
the goals, behavior, and capabilities of an ETI or SI. Speculation is fun 
but in no way a basis for decision-making. We have no data, and should 
remain agnostic.

-- David Lubkin.

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