# [ExI] Virtual Reality is where the aliens are

spike spike66 at att.net
Sun Sep 6 04:37:02 UTC 2015

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From: extropy-chat [mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf
Of Anders Sandberg
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>>.Hmmm, that is a bit close to improper procedure.  A bit too religioney
for my taste.  {8^D  However, in the particular case of Fermi's Paradox, I
am flat desperate.

>.As one of our locals once said, "pluralitas non est ponenda sine
necessitate" - do not add extra stuff to your theory unless you need it. But
the *kind* of stuff can be strange: extra dimensions are not stranger than
other kinds of matter or negative numbers. But simpler, less extravagant
stuff is of course always preferable..Anders Sandberg

Ja.  I wasn't there when it happened, but visualize what it was like when
Heron and later Bombelli introduced the notion of imaginary numbers.  Plenty
of the grumpy old professors must have dismissed the whole idea as
silliness, just some kind of useless game.  It was probably a lot like

Well look at it now: how in the heeeeellll could we do without that concept
today?  Controls engineering would fumble around trying an alternative way
to predict regions of instability without a complex plane; we might still be
struggling to explain why singularities happen and where.  We wouldn't have
Euler's equation.  We would be back to elementary school explanations (still
being used today) that the square root of a negative number is undefined.
(Why do they do that still?  Now in Algebra 2 they will need to tell the
students that something they have always been taught is wrong, not just
incomplete, it is wrooooong.)

When I hear additional dimensions being proposed, I just compare the notion
to complex numbers: if it explains something or correctly predicts
something, bring em on.  Just because I can't visualize them does not mean
they aren't there.  Just because they are imaginary doesn't mean they are
not real.  (Well, if you must get all literal on me.  Oy, imaginary:
terrible terminology, bad idea.  Shoulda been called vertical numbers or
real, imaginary and complex, we should have called them horizontal, vertical
and diagonal numbers respectively, or tangible, intangible and outangible
numbers respectively.  Or  perhaps trangible, rather than that awful term
complex?)

spike

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