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Are we living in a computer simulation?
Posted 11 December 2012 - 05:34 PM
Can someone please explain the graph on page 3 to me?
i.e. what happens after 80 and 140 years?
Posted 12 December 2012 - 08:10 AM
Given the significant resources invested in determining the quan-
tum fluctuations of the fundamental fields which permeate our universe, and in calculating
nuclei from first principles (for recent works, see Refs. [4–6]), it stands to reason that future
simulation efforts will continue to extend to ever-smaller pixelations and ever-larger vol-
umes of space-time, from the femto-scale to the atomic scale, and ultimately to macroscopic
Our simulations will increase in both detail and spatial extent.
Posted 13 December 2012 - 04:17 AM
Posted 13 December 2012 - 07:57 AM
The concept that humanity might be living in a computer simulation was discussed in a 2003 paper published in Philosophical Quarterly by Nick Bostrom, a philosophy professor at the University of Oxford. In the paper, he argued that at least one of three possibilities must be true:
He also held that “the belief that there is a significant chance that we will one day become posthumans who run ancestor simulations is false, unless we are currently living in a simulation.”
- The human species is likely to go extinct before reaching a “posthuman” stage.
- Any posthuman civilisation is very unlikely to run a significant number of simulations of its evolutionary history.
- We are almost certainly living in a computer simulation.
Thinking along similar lines is what caused me to stop calling myself an atheist.
Posted 13 December 2012 - 10:08 AM
It looks like the vertical bands @ 80 and 140 years represent when we'll be able to create simulations with lattice sizes of 1 micron and 1 meter, respectively.
In other words, by around 2160-70, we could have entire "rooms" like the Holodeck in Star Trek - perfect simulations, down to the quantum level. This would provide a level of realism not available in full-immersion VR. This will make a fascinating entry for the timeline. I could extrapolate the graph to later centuries and millenia. Perhaps in 4000 AD we'll have entire universe simulations.
Posted 13 December 2012 - 12:56 PM
Posted 13 December 2012 - 04:49 PM
This will make a fascinating entry for the timeline. I could extrapolate the graph to later centuries and millenia. Perhaps in 4000 AD we'll have entire universe simulations.
Definitely! Another cool consequence of increasingly detailed simulations would be in science. The experimental environment would be literally as controlled as it can be. I predict that by the time our simulations get macro-sized, not only will science experiments based on simulated environments be more common than real-life lab OR field experiments; it will also be common knowledge that simulated experiments provide much more reliable and accurate data than you'd get from an experiment in any real-world setting.
Posted 13 December 2012 - 07:26 PM
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