[extropy-chat] Is the Universe a Virtual Reality Matrix?
pgptag at gmail.com
Sat Jul 24 11:59:53 UTC 2004
Propaganda Matrix - "We may be a simulation ...
creations of some supreme, or super-being," muses
Britain's astronomer royal, Sir Martin Rees, a staunch
advocate of the multiverse theory. He wonders whether
the entire physical universe might be an exercise in
virtual reality, so that "we're in the matrix rather
than the physics itself".
Is there any justification for believing this wacky
idea? You bet, says Nick Bostrom, a philosopher at
Oxford University, who even has a website devoted to
the topic ( http://www.simulation-argument.com).
"Because their computers are so powerful, they could
run a great many simulations," he writes in The
Philosophical Quarterly. So if there exist
civilisations with cosmic simulating ability, then the
fake universes they create would rapidly proliferate
to outnumber the real ones. After all, virtual reality
is a lot cheaper than the real thing. So by simple
statistics, a random observer like you or me is most
probably a simulated being in a fake world. And viewed
from inside the matrix, we could never tell the difference.
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