The history of mankind is riddled with the weird and the wonderful; bizarre people, strange places and odd events. For centuries, we’ve told each other fantastic stories around campfires and in darkened rooms. Tales of ghosts, UFOs, and conspiracies, but are these stories exactly that: Stories? There’s only one way to find out! Join me as I dive down the rabbit hole and into… the Unexplained Files.
This time: Simulation Theory
2015 Isaac Asimov Memorial Debate, American Museum of Natural History, New York. The annual science conference is going well; Neil Degrasse Tyson and other boffin types are all having a great sciencey time and laughing at Flat Earthers (rightfully) and religion (probably) when suddenly, Dr James Gates Jr. takes the proverbial floor and watches as his revered colleagues break out in assholes and shit themselves to death.
Why? He told them that the chances are we are living in a simulation. That everything around us isn’t actually real. It’s made up. They were all part of the Matrix. Just in shit clothes.
And I can hear you cry “Why didn’t the sciencey ones tell this dude to fuck himself?” The answer to that is, he didn’t tell them outright they were all part of the Matrix. He dropped them a little factoid and let the clever peeps work out the rest on their own.
So what did he tell them?
He’d been looking into string theory, the idea that all of the forces in nature can be described by one theory, that strings everything together. In his research, he’d been studying pictures of equations related to string theory attempting to fathom the true nature of reality, and within said pictures he found codes. Computer codes. Computer codes like those you’d find in an internet browser.
If that freaks you out a bit, you might take a little comfort in knowing that after hearing this information Neil Degrasse Tyson spent a full three minutes trying to scoop his melted brain back inside his earholes.
That can’t be right though, can it? Over seven billions souls on Earth, how can it not be real?
Quantum computers. That’s how. In a nutshell, a quantum computer is like a regular computer, but instead of doing calculations one at a time, it does all of the calculations at the same time, much like a human brain. A computer powerful enough could pretend to be seven billion different brains. In fact, it’s actually more likely that we live in a simulation.
If you look at the first computer game Pong, it was two rectangle ‘bats’ sliding up and down hitting a square ‘ball’. Compare that with what we have today. Space explorer No Man’s Sky not have been everything that was expected of it, but what was cool about the game was that the developers themselves hadn’t seen all of the worlds they had created. Because there were 18 quintillion of them. They put code into a computer and it developed multiple worlds based on that data.
What we have to consider is this: If the pattern of improvement continues, at some point the future, we will reach a stage where computer games are indistinguishable from reality.
Enter Philosopher Nick Bostrum and his Simulation Argument. Bostrum reckons there are three distinct possibilities and one of them must be true.
Make Your Mind Up Time.
So if this is all a computer simulation, doesn’t that make it all a bit sad? We live in a computer generated world, and nothing is real. Actually, I don’t think it does. Think about it: if the sun shines, don’t you fell a bit better? If you drop a glass, does it not fall to the floor? And probably break? If you cut yourself cleaning it up do you not bleed?
In the simulation, if you get hit by a train, it really hurts. You probably die. That’s if you’re lucky. If you kill someone, they stay dead, and you get caught, you go to jail. And perhaps get touched inappropriately by a 200 pound man named Crystal. Not good.
By the same token. If you fall in love, that spring in your step feels real enough, doesn't it? Real or not, it changes nothing. And if you do get the feeling that none of it matters because it’s not ‘real’, then why not throw caution to the wind and chase your dreams. Make good of it. Take a chance. Just make sure you’re not hurting anybody in the process. Basically, don’t be an asshole.
Are we living in a computer generated simulation?
RATING: 1=Bollocks 2=Not convinced 3=Possibly… 4=Compelling stuff 5=Holyshittheskyisfalling
What do you think? Is this a Matrix? Or are we the most advanced civilisation in the Universe? Comment below!
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In this blog I'll be bringing to you short tales of things that go bump in the night, true stories of weird and unexplained events, and the real-life news of all things odd and macabre, and entertain you along the way.