Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
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15-12-2012, 05:37 PM
RE: Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
(15-12-2012 10:31 AM)lucradis Wrote:  Absolute waste of time and money. There is nothing to be gained from this.

It's like testing for the existence of God. Nothing could be 100 percent proven because let's say in this instance we were inside of a computer simulation... Who's to say there wouldn't be measures in place to defend against any test that would reveal our actual world. So if the test came back negative it could mean nothing. If it came back positive it could mean nothing as well, because what if it came back positive but it was god who made that outcome happen to throw us off his sneaky little trail.

This reminds me of the study showing that since the invention of the car there have been more car related deaths. Pointless.
Nothing is absolutely proven.

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15-12-2012, 07:53 PM
RE: Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
(15-12-2012 05:37 PM)Logica Humano Wrote:  
(15-12-2012 10:31 AM)lucradis Wrote:  Absolute waste of time and money. There is nothing to be gained from this.

It's like testing for the existence of God. Nothing could be 100 percent proven because let's say in this instance we were inside of a computer simulation... Who's to say there wouldn't be measures in place to defend against any test that would reveal our actual world. So if the test came back negative it could mean nothing. If it came back positive it could mean nothing as well, because what if it came back positive but it was god who made that outcome happen to throw us off his sneaky little trail.

This reminds me of the study showing that since the invention of the car there have been more car related deaths. Pointless.
Nothing is absolutely proven.
Cats are always orange.

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16-12-2012, 12:07 AM
RE: Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
There's a problem with the computer simulation theory... most of our senses. You can't possibly digitize that. So this means we'd all have to be individually hooked up to said computer. If that's the case, I could be the only real one here. This theory sucks.

While we're talking about fun theories about the world, I've always had this fun one since I was a kid (when I was a believer mind you) and still think about to this day...

Planets orbit a star... stars orbit each other... most stars orbit a galaxy's center... galaxies are within a structure of dark matter...

What if we are all a part of God's anus? Shocking

“We are all connected; To each other, biologically. To the earth, chemically. To the rest of the universe atomically.”

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16-12-2012, 03:06 AM
RE: Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
(15-12-2012 07:53 PM)lucradis Wrote:  
(15-12-2012 05:37 PM)Logica Humano Wrote:  Nothing is absolutely proven.
Cats are always orange.
Unless of course they are not.

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17-12-2012, 10:54 AM
RE: Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/12/16/do...ek-answer/
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17-12-2012, 04:21 PM
RE: Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
The concept of the universe being generated by a computer simulation is an interesting idea. If it were, I wonder what kind of "code" is used to create black holes since nothing can be retrieved from them and nothing is known about their interior. I have heard from astrophysicists, such as Neil deGrasse Tyson, that black holes may "remember" all that they have eaten (in a sense.)

Overall, I think that we don't live in a computer simulation. Even if we did, I don't see the use in it except from discovering the ultimate nature of reality. It seems doubtful that we could use such information in a meaningful way unless we can manipulate the "source code" of the simulation. If we can't then we might as well as not live in a computer simulation because it wouldn't make a difference anyway!

Also, what happens when we die? Do we go to the recycle bin? Big Grin

A humanist is a person who believes that it is possible to lead a good life without either the promise of a reward or the threat of punishment after you are dead. -Kurt Vonnegut
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17-12-2012, 04:25 PM
RE: Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
(17-12-2012 04:21 PM)Pham Nguyen Wrote:  The concept of the universe being generated by a computer simulation is an interesting idea. If it were, I wonder what kind of "code" is used to create black holes since nothing can be retrieved from them and nothing is known about their interior. I have heard from astrophysicists, such as Neil deGrasse Tyson, that black holes may "remember" all that they have eaten (in a sense.)

Overall, I think that we don't live in a computer simulation. Even if we did, I don't see the use in it except from discovering the ultimate nature of reality. It seems doubtful that we could use such information in a meaningful way unless we can manipulate the "source code" of the simulation. If we can't then we might as well as not live in a computer simulation because it wouldn't make a difference anyway!

Also, what happens when we die? Do we go to the recycle bin? Big Grin


A black hole is a Write-Only Memory Bank, or WOMB. WOMBs give birth to new universes. Yes

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17-12-2012, 04:32 PM
RE: Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
(16-12-2012 12:07 AM)NoahsFarce Wrote:  There's a problem with the computer simulation theory... most of our senses. You can't possibly digitize that.

I disagree. I can't simulate that. You can't simulate that. But any programmer capable of simulating an entire universe might just be capable of overcoming the issue of digitizing our senses.

After all, your brain doesn't see light; it gets electrical impulses from your eyes. Your brain doesn't hear sounds; it gets electrical impulses from your ears. Etc. So all the great programmer in the sky would have to do is create (simulate) those same electrical impulses to your brain and your brain wouldn't know the difference - they could come from sensory organs or from the giant sky computer. It would be identical to your brain either way.

Not that any of this matters. Computer simulation or reality, it's very real to me. I can't blow up the universe and neither can anyone else. I can't unplug the great sky computer and neither can anyone else. And it doesn't really matter if the great programmer in the sky unplugs the computer - the odds of that, and the likelihood of me doing anything about it, seem more or less just the same as the odds of the universe collapsing, or tearing itself apart, or whatever, and more or less the same likelihood that I could do anything about it. Either way, my life/simulation goes on, until it doesn't.

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18-12-2012, 06:31 AM
RE: Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
Our brain is sent electrical impulses... true. But there's much more to it than just the electrical impulses. In order to decipher these impulses, our brains have highly complicated neurons which is still far from being understood. Not only that, it is the other parts of our bodies that translate our senses into the electric impulses. But if some race, being, or future humans have figured all of this out, what's the point in running a simulation where there are people that haven't figured it out? That's like us creating a highly complicated simulation of cave-men... what's the point other than novelty and maybe substantiating/disproving a few theories we have on them?

I personally do not think any of this can possibly be digitized. Only mimicked... I'm going on a realistic point-of-view here, all of this that we are experiencing is very real. It's not even remotely like our dreams where we are in fact only using our brains. I don't have the exact same sensory experiences in a dream like I do when I'm awake. Now you can rebut with something along the lines of this being programmed that way, but we'd get nowhere with that. It would simply turn into a similar situation as when theists say "God works in mysterious ways."

Also, the Universe can be simulated and has been simulated many times. Everything from colliding galaxies to structure of dark matter has been simulated by computers. We have simulated human beings as well. Maybe those sims are wondering if they are in a computer simulation?

“We are all connected; To each other, biologically. To the earth, chemically. To the rest of the universe atomically.”

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18-12-2012, 10:29 AM
RE: Do we live in a "computer simulation"?
(18-12-2012 06:31 AM)NoahsFarce Wrote:  Our brain is sent electrical impulses... true. But there's much more to it than just the electrical impulses. In order to decipher these impulses, our brains have highly complicated neurons which is still far from being understood.

So what? We're talking hypothetically anyway. I know we can't do it today, but I'm far from willing to say it is forever impossible to understand, decipher and even simulate these processes, at some time in the future with enough research.

(18-12-2012 06:31 AM)NoahsFarce Wrote:  Not only that, it is the other parts of our bodies that translate our senses into the electric impulses.

Those might not even exist. You could be a brain in a jar for all you know. Hooked up to computer by wires and receiving electrical impulses from non-existent sensory organs that simulate the organs you (mistakenly) think you have.

(18-12-2012 06:31 AM)NoahsFarce Wrote:  But if some race, being, or future humans have figured all of this out, what's the point in running a simulation where there are people that haven't figured it out? That's like us creating a highly complicated simulation of cave-men... what's the point other than novelty and maybe substantiating/disproving a few theories we have on them?

Good question. Ultimately, the philosophy of "Why?" leads me to the conclusion that it's extremely unlikely for us to be simply simulations. So unlikely that I dismiss the notion entirely other than as a thought experiment, and usually only when someone brings it up here on the forum.

However, simply saying "what's the point?" doesn't prove that it's untrue, and absolutely doesn't prove that it's impossible.

(18-12-2012 06:31 AM)NoahsFarce Wrote:  I personally do not think any of this can possibly be digitized. Only mimicked...

First, if the mimicry is good enough, you couldn't tell that it was mimicry. That's the whole point of mimicry.

Secondly, as for digitizing it, ultimately your eye sends electrical data through your optic nerve to your brain, which then interprets the electrical data as visual images. It's just data. Just data. Once we put some time and effort into it, it's entirely possible, and even probable, that we will learn exactly how to digitize that data. Saying it's impossible is like when they told Orville and Wilbur that it was impossible to fly. Exactly like that - every day that people said those things to the Wright brothers, those people were correct. They couldn't fly. Wilbur and Orville couldn't fly. They were right to say it was impossible to fly, as long as what they meant was "It's impossible to fly today", but the Wright brothers proved that what couldn't be done that day, could be done on a later day. When you say it's impossible to digitize sensory input to the brain, you are correct for today, but you're simply telling us what we cannot do today, not what we cannot do tomorrow.

(18-12-2012 06:31 AM)NoahsFarce Wrote:  I'm going on a realistic point-of-view here, all of this that we are experiencing is very real. It's not even remotely like our dreams where we are in fact only using our brains. I don't have the exact same sensory experiences in a dream like I do when I'm awake. Now you can rebut with something along the lines of this being programmed that way, but we'd get nowhere with that. It would simply turn into a similar situation as when theists say "God works in mysterious ways."

Or maybe what's going on here is that your brain knows the difference between what comes in from your sensory organs and what your brain makes up in your own head. Dreams are made up, in your head, no sensory input required. But what you see, hear, taste, smell, and touch comes from other sensory input.

This would be true in both the real world and the simulated world - your brain would still believe your sensory input is true (even if it's digitized from a computer) and your brain would still believe your dreams are all in your head.

(18-12-2012 06:31 AM)NoahsFarce Wrote:  Also, the Universe can be simulated and has been simulated many times. Everything from colliding galaxies to structure of dark matter has been simulated by computers. We have simulated human beings as well. Maybe those sims are wondering if they are in a computer simulation?

That's not the same and you know it. The universe simulations are about big bangs and novae and galaxies forming and stars forming and moving around. That's simulated down to a stellar level. Really cool, but it's not a universe simulation like the ones we're talking about here. Once those sims get down to every blade of grass on every planet circling every star in every galaxy, then we're getting close. Drill that down to every atom of every molecule of every bit of matter of every planet, comet, asteroid, cloud, star, etc, everywhere, every single atom, and now you're talking a universe sim.

OK, that's not necessary to simulate you and me. To create "The Matrix" and have you and me living in a simulation, all they need to simulate is our immediate environment. In fact, you get a different simulation than I get, since we're outside of any sensory link to each other. And the computer doesn't have so simulate atoms (except for scientists who are actually working with atoms, or think they are). So the computer simulates the chair I am sitting on, I see it, feel it - these impulses are electricity entering my brain, either from my eyes and my central nervous system or from a computer simulation - I can't tell. That's all it has to simulate, a chair to see and feel, a keyboard and mouse to see and feel, a couple computer monitors to see, some other stuff like my office walls, my desk, some junk on my desk, writing on my whiteboard, etc. Not much compared to a universe. As I move around, it can stop simulating my office and start simulating stuff out in the hall, then stop simulating the hall and start simulating the break room, etc. One little simulated bubble at a time. If someone enters my little bubble, the computer sends copies of the data to each of us. If we talk to each other or touch each other or smell each other (or if we're lucky, taste each other), then that data gets shared too.

That's how they do it in MMOs like World of Warcraft. Of course, those are simple compared to the simulation that we might live in, but hey, we're just getting started. Whoever built our great simulation is much better at it than Blizzard is.

And yes, I think my dark elf does occasionally wonder if she's living in a simulation.

"Whores perform the same function as priests, but far more thoroughly." - Robert A. Heinlein
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