August 14, 2007

IS OUR UNIVERSE SOMEONE ELSE’S HOBBY?

Until I talked to Nick Bostrom, a philosopher at Oxford University, it never occurred to me that our universe might be somebody else’s hobby. I hadn’t imagined that the omniscient, omnipotent creator of the heavens and earth could be an advanced version of a guy who spends his weekends building model railroads or overseeing video-game worlds like the Sims.

But now it seems quite possible. In fact, if you accept a pretty reasonable assumption of Dr. Bostrom’s, it is almost a mathematical certainty that we are living in someone else’s computer simulation.

This would explain a lot. Debug, please . . . .

Thoughts on how to survive inside a computer simulation can be found here.

UPDATE: More thoughts from Beldar.

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