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The Simulation Argument - Page 4

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CrownRoyal   Oman. Jun 15 2016 15:29. Posts 11380


  On June 15 2016 13:02 Nazgul wrote:
If this was a simulation nothing about the pain and lack of perfection is surprising. It's a simulation after all they would have created the world and just see it through however it may end up. It could have ended up with humans not being pieces of shit, but here we are. If it is a true simulation it is to explore how something ends up, not to create a nice little fairy tale world for us to live in. Either way this is still not anything I can come even close to thinking is realistic. If this simulation started at the big bang it could have ended with nothing but lava and bacteria. I understand simulation time wouldn't be aligned with real time but the amount of computing power you would need to sit through billions of years of evolution just to end up with a couple thousand of human analysis is ridiculous.



I'm not sure what humans have anything to do with analysis of the life of a universe, I think it would be ridiculous to assume we are the supreme intellectual beings that have existed or will exist in our cosmos. If you create a universe that follows the same laws of physics and rules we have in our own humble abode anything that anyone or anything achieves is applicable to your own meandering experiences.

WHAT IS THIS 

Nazgul    Netherlands. Jun 15 2016 15:54. Posts 7078

Sorry, what does that have to do with what I said?

You almost twin-caracked his AK - JonnyCosmo 

Smuft   Canada. Jun 15 2016 19:47. Posts 633

I think Crown means humanity existing in the simulation could just be a by product of it's primary purpose. ie. maybe some god tier aliens are running a simulation of the universe and we are just living in it

haven't thought about this very much, seems less likely to be the source of the simulation but not impossible


Smuft   Canada. Jun 15 2016 20:45. Posts 633

Just as a few posters in this thread have a hard time understanding how one can take this argument seriously, I have a hard time understanding how one cannot. But I'm probably working with a bit more information than them as I've spent more time listening to people much smarter than us talk about the subject. Not everyone out right supports it or goes full Musk saying "billion to 1 we're living in a simulation" but most everyone at least treats it seriously.

Here is a short list of high profile sources on the simulation argument:

George Smoot - Physicist / Nobel Prize Winner


Sam Harris - Neuroscientist


Neil deGrasse Tyson hosting a debate - panelists are all intellectual rapists from prestigious schools like Harvard and MIT


Tom Campbell - Physicist (NASA), also worked in military and for the DOD for many years on things like missile defens - also wrote a huge book on simulation theory called "My Big TOE (theory of everything)"


Nick Bostrom and Elon Musk sources were linked in the OP


tomson    Poland. Jun 15 2016 23:03. Posts 1982


  On June 10 2016 03:44 Smuft wrote:
1. I think as time goes on you're right there would be less and less interest in creating such simulations. But it'll also get easier to run sims as time goes on and computing power increases even further; ie. at first only the futuristic version of google can do it, then the top 5 tech groups can do it, then wide commercial use, then enthusiasts and finally average people. Not to say that the same economic model will exist at that time but there will be some similar effect where it's first available to the few and then available to the many as the technology and computing resources improve.


As technology progresses either our sense of accountability increases immensely or we are guaranteed extinction.

If you believe we ever get to a point where we can make such simulations you probably also believe we will get to a point where we will have the technology to wipe out humanity. Right now we have atom bombs, in the not so distant future we will have a device capable of single handedly destroying the planet. I'd imagine at that point we will have to create either some foolproof restrictions or advance our level of consciousness where no single human will even consider using it.

And that is why I am skeptical of the notion of 'average people' using extremely advanced technology. I'm not too concerned about some Joe Schmo toying around creating universes. By that point the world will have to be very different from today, otherwise as a race we will not make it far.


  re: 3/4 - I've considered the morality issue we might have when capable of this technology but I think it would not be enough to deter us because what horrible reality would we really be subjecting these sentient beings to? Life based on the laws of our universe? Is that really so bad? Sure there will be a lot of pain and suffering but not much more than what life on this planet has already experienced up to this point.


I was talking about the possibility of sentient beings figuring out they are just part of a simulation. Is that really so bad? I mean, realizing that you, everyone you know, reality itself is just part of a 'game' that is meant to advance the knowledge of future civilizations seems pretty cruel and horrific to me.

Peace of mind cant be bought. 

Baalim   Mexico. Jun 16 2016 00:38. Posts 33863


  On June 15 2016 13:02 Nazgul wrote:
If this was a simulation nothing about the pain and lack of perfection is surprising. It's a simulation after all they would have created the world and just see it through however it may end up. It could have ended up with humans not being pieces of shit, but here we are. If it is a true simulation it is to explore how something ends up, not to create a nice little fairy tale world for us to live in. Either way this is still not anything I can come even close to thinking is realistic. If this simulation started at the big bang it could have ended with nothing but lava and bacteria. I understand simulation time wouldn't be aligned with real time but the amount of computing power you would need to sit through billions of years of evolution just to end up with a couple thousand of human analysis is ridiculous.



But the kind of simulation you are talking about, that being the whole universe being simulated, every single sub atomic particle simulated is impossible, the simulation that we are talking about in the last few posts is a "personal" simulation, where only you are real, that is much more realistic in terms of computational power to call it that way.


So the universe simulation makes sense for pain, but when its only one person being simulated then it doesnt make sense, unless the ones creating the simulations are sadists. Its the same theological argument that an all powerful god (in this case the simulator) cannot be a good God given the constant misery in the conditions of life.

Ex-PokerStars Team Pro OnlineLast edit: 16/06/2016 00:39

Jelle   Belgium. Jun 16 2016 01:00. Posts 3474

(just read page 1 sorry if this has already been said)

I feel like everyone skips over the prerequisites as if they're clearly met but that doesn't seem obvious to me

maybe it really is tough/close to impossible for advanced societies to avoid killing themselves before they reach the point where they can run ridiculously amazing simulations?

maybe by the time you're smart enough to run absurdly badass simulations, you don't need them anymore?

this argument is kind of presented in a tricky way with the insinuation that the probability of the 2 statements above is 0 and therefore the remaining probability has to be almost 1. I wouldn't say 0 to either so then your odds of being in a real universe get better at least

GroT 

Stroggoz   New Zealand. Jun 16 2016 01:55. Posts 4886


  On June 15 2016 08:10 Smuft wrote:
Show nested quote +



I don't think we should refer to my random guess as a "calculation" but I have thought about the stuff you mentioned a little bit. I don't think nuclear war is going to totally wipe us out any time soon for a few reasons;

1. rational people are holding all the bombs, people that know they cant nuke anyone else without getting nuked back (if some radical islamic group got ahold of a large amount of nukes it'd be much more dangerous)
2. even if nuclear war does break out, even if 90% of the population is destroyed, that still leaves ~700k people, that's more than enough to rebuild

I think for existential threats it's more things that we aren't aware of, the things that we are already thinking about we can plan for and mitigate, it's the unknown that we haven't even considered that is most likely to kill us IMO.

-

If you think I'm overconfident you'll have to find a fundamental flaw in Bostrom's initial argument or give me a good reason to put more weight on proposition #1 or #2 over #3. I'm very open to changing my weights or abandoning the idea altogether, I just haven't heard any good reasons to do so.








This is just logically fallacious. I don't have to find a flaw in Bostroms argument to show it's weak, though i think there can be some found-that's not how science works the large majority of the time. He (Bostrom), is the one who is meant to make a convincing argument in the first place if we want to say that it's likely correct. Usually it should have predictability and have fallibility. Well it has neither of those two properties. There is no way to falsify the simulation hypothesis and it doesn't predict anything, so for me there is no reason to be so confident in it. Let's be honest, your getting these %'s out of nowhere.




Just to make clear. I think it's fine to speculate/have bad theories, as long as we recognize they are highly speculative. That's all philosophers ever do, admit that they have weak theories, and this topic belongs to the domain of philosophy.

supposed to have greenstar not braceletLast edit: 16/06/2016 01:55

NMcNasty    United States. Jun 16 2016 02:43. Posts 2039


  On June 16 2016 00:55 Stroggoz wrote:
There is no way to falsify the simulation hypothesis and it doesn't predict anything, so for me there is no reason to be so confident in it.



You can just tweak it a bit to give it predictive qualities.

1. Human beings will make it to year 5000
2. Human beings will develop technology enabling them to run sims that replicate human experience by the year 5000
3. Human beings (or their AI counterparts) will decide to run billions of these sims by the year 5000

If its gets to year 5001 all of these happen you can say that the modified simulation theory was proven correct. If not, you can say it was falsified. So you can create odds just like any other bet. Even if you say the odds are 100 to 1 against all three of the above happening, even just ~1% is pretty huge for something so mind-boggling actually happening.

Also you could make the same type of bet for 50,000 or 5,000,000 years.


Smuft   Canada. Jun 16 2016 05:58. Posts 633


  On June 15 2016 22:03 tomson wrote:
Show nested quote +


As technology progresses either our sense of accountability increases immensely or we are guaranteed extinction.

If you believe we ever get to a point where we can make such simulations you probably also believe we will get to a point where we will have the technology to wipe out humanity. Right now we have atom bombs, in the not so distant future we will have a device capable of single handedly destroying the planet. I'd imagine at that point we will have to create either some foolproof restrictions or advance our level of consciousness where no single human will even consider using it.

And that is why I am skeptical of the notion of 'average people' using extremely advanced technology. I'm not too concerned about some Joe Schmo toying around creating universes. By that point the world will have to be very different from today, otherwise as a race we will not make it far.



Legit insights. I still don't think that significantly effects the argument though, even if average people aren't running simulations many simulations will still be run by people qualified to do so. ie. maybe instead of billions to one or millions to one, itd instead be thousand to one


 
I was talking about the possibility of sentient beings figuring out they are just part of a simulation. Is that really so bad? I mean, realizing that you, everyone you know, reality itself is just part of a 'game' that is meant to advance the knowledge of future civilizations seems pretty cruel and horrific to me.



This could go down some strange philosophical path on the subjective value of life... I personally don't think it's particularly cruel, I mean would the knowledge that we live in a simulation actually make any difference at all? If you zoom out and look at the big picture our lives are more less equally insignificant whether we are in a simulation or not.

The things that make our lives important to us won't change at all. Our experiences, our emotions, and our loved ones would be exactly the same as they have been our entire lives - before and after any knowledge that we do or do not live in a simulation.

The change in perspective would be a big adjustment but as far as being so cruel as to prevent us from ever running simulations at all? not even close imo


lucky331   . Jun 16 2016 06:35. Posts 1124


  On June 10 2016 02:30 tomson wrote:
A couple of counter-arguments I have come up with:

1. In the future there would have to be some kind of point to create such simulations. It could be the case that by the time we are able to create such simulations they would not provide us with any more insight.



what about for entertainment value? we have games that relive the past right? what if our descendants enter the simulation, and live with us down here...?


 

2. There would have to be extremely many simulations running (the more there are the more likely it is we are in one). Again - there might not be a point to do that many.




again, it's for the entertainment value. different types of simulation for different folks. some like a utopian scenario, some like a dystopian, etc.. etc..


 

3. If at this point of our evolution we find the idea of creating a simulation where there would be sentient beings unaware that they are not real unsettling I can only hope that in the future we will have even higher ethical standards. Especially since I'm sure future technology will provide a multitude of moral dilemmas.




the fact that there's a possibility that our descendants know they are creating sims that are self aware, those "higher ethical standards" go out the window. and there's a high chance they're all doing this for profit and entertainment. and we're the entertainment. so better hope their in high praise of you or you get sent to somalia or somewhere not nice. i feel like someone must really love me out there, i could still get away with doing what i want and slack my days away.


 

4. To expand on the ethical issue of creating such a simulation - the possibility of the beings figuring out they are inside a simulation makes it a lot more disturbing. Unless you rig it in a way where they can never prove it, but placing such a caveat inside the simulation may beat the purpose of it.



there's that risk. but what if we are in a simulation right now and we accept it as true, how do you prove or disprove it?

 Last edit: 16/06/2016 12:04

lucky331   . Jun 16 2016 06:41. Posts 1124

and what if this guy: https://www.liquidpoker.net/poker-for...Mass_shooting_in_Orlando_gay_n...html is from the real world, he entered our simulation and started shooting folks for the lulz.

edit: it's like playing GTA, but way more realistic. i'd pay to play that tbh.

 Last edit: 16/06/2016 06:52

lucky331   . Jun 16 2016 12:06. Posts 1124

could this guy be the ultimate sim troll?

+ Show Spoiler +


PIetraxon   . Jun 16 2016 18:41. Posts 8

1) If this is a simulation, why the assumption that it was created to simulate anything related to human existence? I find it infinitely more likely that the simulation would have been created to test something completely different, and us sim-humans are just a byproduct.

2) If it actually is a simulation of the human existence, then it would have had to be designed in a way that it will be utterly impossible for us to ever figure it out. As such, it makes it one of the few "potential mysteries" that's not worth pursuing in my mind, because the pursuit would be destined to fail by design (literally and figuratively).

3) The "ethics" argument us invalid in my opinion, assuming that we are already accepting that we live in a simulation. It might as well be that we are put in the simulation by our own request, just to see if we can relive our lives in a different way than we did. It might seem "unethical" to us current sim-humans, but to our real-world counterpart human, who may be at their death bed (whatever that means in their world), it would probably be the thrill of a lifetime. Not to mention that even if we were all "forced" to be in this simulation, chances are it's not even an issue of ethics to whoever put is in here; they might have (and I think probably would have) evolved so so much that, compared to them, we are nothing - we don't even fit into the group of "things" or "beings" that they would extend their ethics to. We could be to them no more than what Tassadar or Kerrigan are to us (hint: computer game characters, for those who don't know).

4) If this is a simulation, it might as well have only me in it. I mean, how do I know that ANY of you guys, or any of the people around me, are real? How do YOU, dear reader, know that anyone around you is real (by "real" I mean that they are experiencing anything at all)? For all I know I could be the only one living in the simulation and this is the only simulation in existence. Am I talking to myself right now?

5) As Nazgul put it, this sounds a bit too much like a modern version of "finding God" (only now it's "Finding THE Computer" instead). And to someone who wrote earlier that some people defy the idea of a simulation because it takes away from their perceived "uniqueness" of humanity, I actually think quite the opposite is true; I think that it takes quite an ego to believe that everything around you was built just to test something out that has to do with us. In other words; I don't believe in the simulation hypothesis (it's a hypothesis by the way, not a theory) because I DON'T think humanity is special, not because I think it is.

6) In the end, and as someone has already said, I don't see what it would change at all. I think the perceived appeal of the simulation hypothesis is that it implies that there is an "exit", and a different world where "everything is possible". *cough* heaven *cough*.

7) Obviously it would be very interesting (scientifically speaking) if the hypothesis were true. Again though, and as noted earlier by others, I haven't yet seen or heard anything that would pique my interest enough to consider this seriously. The simulation must be so absolutely perfect that, again, we would never be able to prove it is one. If it weren't perfect, we'd have to see some very clear signs and glitches. And by glitches I don't mean some physical phenomena that are yet difficult to explain; I mean actual glitches - seeing 75 moons in the sky for a few seconds before a correction. Gravity playing games with us sending all people into space for a few moments before we come back down. Some sort of lag that would make everyone freeze and not move for a while while still being conscious. My arms disappearing for a moment before coming back. Clothes changing colors momentarily. You know, things that look like actual software glitches. If we haven't seen any of that yet (or if we are all undergoing a memory purge whenever it happens, Men In Black style), then I have to think the simulation is impenetrable to us, and therefore completely indistinguishable from reality.

EDIT:

8) Smuft, thanks for the videos above, I watched all of them (some now, some earlier in the past). None of them contain anything that I would consider credible enough to give the hypothesis any closer consideration; the people in the videos are credible, yes, but what they are saying sounds like no more than an opinion.

Essentially, it's me saying the following right now:

"Consider this: the (real) universe is most likely infinitely large and infinitely old. It is therefore extremely likely for there to have naturally evolved trillions upon trillions of iterations of humanity as we know it and which would never in their existence reach the technological level (or need, for that matter), to create a simulated world. As such, I think the chances of us living in one of those real iterations of humanity that never manage to develop the technology to create sims are by orders of magnitude higher than the chances of us living in a simulated world. I call this the Real World hypothesis."

What these guys in the videos are saying is not science. It merely sounds scientific.

 Last edit: 17/06/2016 09:06

Nazgul    Netherlands. Jun 17 2016 14:27. Posts 7078

I watched the Isaac Asimov Memorial Debate and left with a feeling that even the proponents of the theory debate more for the fun of it than truly believing in it.

You almost twin-caracked his AK - JonnyCosmo 

Smuft   Canada. Jun 18 2016 03:51. Posts 633

Questions for those who reject the argument in it's current form:

If we ever turn on a simulation of the universe where we observe people in it living out their lives, similarly to how you and I do - after this has occurred what is the % chance that we are also living in one?

In case you didn't automatically extrapolate, the day we turn on one is quickly followed by turning on many many more.



Baalim   Mexico. Jun 18 2016 03:57. Posts 33863

you mean an entire universe simulation to the smallest sub-atomic particle? or a Truman Show simulation

Ex-PokerStars Team Pro Online 

PIetraxon   . Jun 18 2016 09:32. Posts 8

@Smuft

"In case you didn't automatically extrapolate, the day we turn on one is quickly followed by turning on many many more. "

The way I see it it's possible there could only be one such simulation, or a few dozen (barring nested simulations). Just because it could potentially be possible doesn't mean anyone will care. Remember 25 years ago everyone was expecting that we'd have Jetsons-style flying cars by now in most western households, and space scientists were expecting (they were extrapolating based on the scientific progress in space exploration) that by around 2000-2005 we would have a giant self-sufficient space colony capable of housing millions (I think) of people. Both of these are technically possible, but no one cares enough for it to be done (at least so far). Instead, rather than the "cool technology" route we've mostly went the "information sharing" route, something pretty much no one would have expected 30-40 years ago. I just don't think the assumptions/premises the Simulation Argument is built on is valid, and by those I mean:

A) That we will ever possess the technology to build such a simulation.

B) That someone will ever care to make many o them (or even one).

They are possibilities, but likely? If they were likely, then I think we must also accept other things as likely as well, such as the question I proposed earlier:

Suppose that the creation of human life forms is no more than a matter of chance (freak chance, but still just chance). If the sample size is large enough (really, really large), then trillions upon trillions of iterations of humanity are going to be created, and so if the universe is endlessly large and endlessly old in one way or another, then such a number of iterations of humanity is bound to be created, with many of them probably never even exploring virtual technology, let alone creating a simulation like the one we speak of. Doesn't this make it incredibly likely that we are living in one of those 'real' iterations of humanity?

It's the same type of question to me. It's an interesting argument for sure (otherwise we wouldn't be having this conversation), but I don't see the argument standing, and it's no different than many other arguments one could come up with. Here's one I'm making up on the spot (but I'm sure someone has already proposed this sometime):

Suppose we keep evolving AI and bio-engineering, isn't it possible that 10 000 years from now we humans (supposing we are the real thing) would send AI out far into space to colonize the world and do some testing; in places where we ourselves can't or don't want to go? These "bio creations" could be extremely similar to humans, but not real humans, and they would not possess the level of insight necessary to figure out that they are not actually humans. We would of course send other living flora and fauna along with the artificial humans so the new "AI-human world" could be fully colonized. It would probably take more time before this could be possible (compared to creating a perfect simulation), but in my mind it is no less or more likely to happen than the simulation. So now I ask two questions:

1) Isn't it more likely that we are living in one such artificial colony than that we are the real human ancestors (who are probably nested somewhere far, far away)? and;

2) Which is more likely - that we are living in a simulation, or that we are an artificial human colony? Would there be more simulations than colonies? I think the colonies would ultimately turn out to be significantly more useful at providing data, so wouldn't they end up shutting down all simulations and expanding the number of colonies? Not to mention that, just like with the simulations, a colony could end up creating its own colonies.

I could come up with more similar arguments, some better than other ones, and things would become even more bizarre pretty quickly.

 Last edit: 18/06/2016 10:22

Liquid`Drone   Norway. Jun 18 2016 12:21. Posts 3019

wouldn't a simulation probably be programmed in a way that wouldn't allow me to realize I am in a simulation? Also, wouldn't realization of living in a simulation have very dire consequences for how you live your life? It would mean that none of the people you surround yourself with are real. Yourself and your own perceptions and feelings, defining their realness is a topic of its own, but at least your actions within the simulation would continue to have tangible effects on yourself and your feeling of wellness. But your actions would not have tangible effects on other people. I can see how 'empathy' would be something a person thinking he lives in a simulation would have less of, for example.

Still, why would a simulation be designed in a way that allows us to pose the question? Like, why would my own simulation randomly decide to have some guy named Smuft make a thread in an internet forum I frequent to make me question whether I am living within a simulation or not? It seems like a weird priority of the programmers to include such a feature.

lol POKER 

Skoal   Canada. Jun 18 2016 12:38. Posts 460

simulation theory is the atheists version of religion

bostrom's 'logic' leaves out a myriad of questions as to why, how, and most importantly consciousness

thinking about or discussing it is fun but it will ultimately lead you down a dead end


 
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