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Jens
2007-Apr-19, 08:04 AM
When I saw there was a thread on "secular creationism", I thought it was going to be discussing something like this (http://www.simulation-argument.com/), but I was wrong. The idea of Nick Bostrom is kind of interesting: that we may be living inside of a computer simulation. What would be interesting is, maybe the person in the computer simulation who made us is also in a computer simulation, going back forever and ever.

I guess this would be a kind of secular creationism, since there would be no "god" in a real sense, just creatures creating other creatures.

Anyway, it's kind of interesting as a speculation.

Moose
2007-Apr-19, 12:14 PM
Anyway, it's kind of interesting as a speculation.

Otherwise known as the Matrix hypothesis. :)

Ronald Brak
2007-Apr-19, 12:21 PM
The matrix hypothesis is both interesting and pointless. Some of the objections to it are kind of silly. There is no need to simulate a universe that consistantly follows the laws of physics. You only need to simulate a belief that the universe consistantly follows the laws of physics in much the same way we don't think it's odd to meet a talking carrot when we're dreaming.

farmerjumperdon
2007-Apr-19, 12:41 PM
You wouldn't be talking about THE Flaming Carrot would you?

Ronald Brak
2007-Apr-19, 12:50 PM
You wouldn't be talking about THE Flaming Carrot would you?

You mean the one I met when I was walking through the desert searching for meaning in my life and I topped a rise and there, low and behold, was a flaming carrot! And the carrot said unto me, "ARRRRGHHHHH! GET SOME WATER! I'M ON FIRE HERE!"

You mean that carrot?

Donnie B.
2007-Apr-19, 09:00 PM
How come I never dream about talking carrots? All I get is aimlessly wandering around parking garages and other equally exciting stuff.

Ronald Brak
2007-Apr-19, 09:39 PM
How come I never dream about talking carrots? All I get is aimlessly wandering around parking garages and other equally exciting stuff.

Try watching The Muppet Show more often.

LurchGS
2007-Apr-19, 09:52 PM
YAY muppets!

Question -=- why think software?.. authors were exploring the 'characters in a book' idea 30-50 years ago - maybe even earlier. (Number of the Beast ring a bell?).

Ah - maybe because - as in Matrix whooohaa- software offers the possibility of breaking free - or even being run again later - without having to worry about responsibility for one's actions.
"The programmer made me do it"

The concept doesn't have any significant difference from the 'aliens made us' idea. Aliens made us, and somebody made the aliens, and somebody made the aliens who made the aliens who made us.. Somewhere at the end of that series you have to have either a god or evolution.

Me, I like Occam's razor. No aliens (much to my personal dismay) - it's either a god or evolution. I've seen no evidence for the former, and plenty for the latter in my peanut butter.

Ronald Brak
2007-Apr-19, 09:59 PM
Zhuangzi beat us to all to the punch with, "...now I do not know whether I was then a man dreaming I was a butterfly, or whether I am now a butterfly, dreaming I am a man."

cbacba
2007-Apr-19, 10:31 PM
You wouldn't be talking about THE Flaming Carrot would you?

Don't you mean the carrot creature from outer space in the original movie The THing - as performed by Marshall Dillon the great tv western actor?

mike alexander
2007-Apr-19, 11:56 PM
I've run across this idea in at least two books, "The Physics of Immortality" and "Great Mambo Chicken and the Transhuman Condition". Both are very funny, but in different ways.

SockMonkey
2007-Apr-20, 01:05 AM
I read The Great Mambo Chicken, it was funny, depressing, and informative.
Gotta love Truax.

Michael Noonan
2007-Apr-20, 01:19 AM
The Neitzsche concept is that we repeat our exact same lives repeatedly.

M theory says we have multiple co existing dimensions.

Conclusion-
This would mean that an empathic person and I am thinking of the twin thing here should be able to access all of their other existences and think with more than one brain.

Nice idea but not logical. I like the idea of multiple existence and empathy but see it as a linear progression with the potential to loop back in time to it.

Similar to Neitzsche but different. Given the same situation without prior awareness of it we would probably make the same choices, but given a lifetime like the Q bit in quantum computing there would most likely be a break and the two or more existences would end up differently.

Cheers

Jens
2007-Apr-20, 01:46 AM
Somewhere at the end of that series you have to have either a god or evolution.


Is that necessarily so? Couldn't you just have an endless series, with no beginning, ever?

LurchGS
2007-Apr-20, 02:15 AM
Not with a discernable starting point to the universe - and I believe most religions postulate that (one thing they and the scientists agree on!)

But when you think of it - an infinite amount of time would be *plenty* of time for evolution to occur more than once. In just 4 billion years (here on earth) we've gone from pond scum to telemarketers..
um.. sorry, that's the same thing, just in a suit.

We've gone from pond scum to the Bugatti Veyron. There! That's better.

(Sorry Bun-Bun - I'll try to find you some telemarketers in a moment)

Gillianren
2007-Apr-20, 05:49 AM
How come I never dream about talking carrots? All I get is aimlessly wandering around parking garages and other equally exciting stuff.

Not the ones with the cows, where one's playing a trombone?

Donnie B.
2007-Apr-20, 02:33 PM
Not the ones with the cows, where one's playing a trombone?Apparently, musical cows do not find my subconscious particularly attractive.

Woe is me. :boohoo:

HenrikOlsen
2007-Apr-20, 04:34 PM
Not the ones with the cows, where one's playing a trombone?
If you look closer you'll see it's a ceremonial wimblehorn.

Pinemarten
2007-Apr-21, 08:21 AM
Spoiler Alert!


Reminds me of the TNG episode were the holodeck character took over the ship. In the end he thought they gave him a shuttle to wonder the galaxy but it all just an isolated computer with lots of memory.
Wasn't there a dilemma about his character being so sophisticated that they didn't feel moral turning him off?

Van Rijn
2007-Apr-21, 08:32 AM
How come I never dream about talking carrots? All I get is aimlessly wandering around parking garages and other equally exciting stuff.

Not the ones with the cows, where one's playing a trombone?

Oh, great, now I'll be dreaming about carrots playing trombones.

In the last dream I remember (I don't usually remember dreams unless I wake up from them) I had broken into a military facility and had been caught. I didn't know why I had broken in, even in the dream. As I was being led away, I specifically remember thinking, "This is going to be bad. Now, why did I do this again?" That's about the point I woke up. I'm guessing this was based on something I had been watching, but the connection is vague.

Moose
2007-Apr-21, 01:03 PM
Heh, a couple of years ago I dreamed I'd been arrested, not stopped but arrested, for going 35 knots in a school zone near a local elementary school where I lived at the time.

According to this conversion chart, 35 knots is roughly 64 km/h or 40 mph. That's a bit over twice the Canadian speed limit in our school zones.

IRL at the time, the local cops had been cracking down on speeders in that area, but arrested was a bit much, don'tcha think? ;)

LurchGS
2007-Apr-21, 07:12 PM
Heh, a couple of years ago I dreamed I'd been arrested, not stopped but arrested, for going 35 knots in a school zone near a local elementary school where I lived at the time.

According to this conversion chart, 35 knots is roughly 64 km/h or 40 mph. That's a bit over twice the Canadian speed limit in our school zones.

IRL at the time, the local cops had been cracking down on speeders in that area, but arrested was a bit much, don'tcha think? ;)

No, I think you should be arrestred - just for the heck of it :)

I dunno.. if you are traveling at knots, you are probably either flying or floating - and neither is generally a good thing around schools.

Me, my dreams *generally* include steam locomotives and/or spiders. Strange, but for me, not terrifying (I'm a bit of a railfan, and love spiders)

ASEI
2007-Apr-21, 07:15 PM
If the universe were a computer simulation, you would expect the scientists to terminate the simulation a few microseconds into the universe's existance (perhaps hundreds of years, their time) out of impatience, old age, or lack of funding.

Of course the particulars in how excruciatingly long it would take a computer to simulate some stretch of time in universe far more complex than itself depends heavily on things like grid density and CFL numbers.

Ronald Brak
2007-Apr-22, 05:10 AM
If the universe were a computer simulation, you would expect the scientists to terminate the simulation a few microseconds into the universe's existance (perhaps hundreds of years, their time) out of impatience, old age, or lack of funding.

Of course the particulars in how excruciatingly long it would take a computer to simulate some stretch of time in universe far more complex than itself depends heavily on things like grid density and CFL numbers.

How often do you try to simulate the universe? Much more likely we're someone's game of civilization which is either a simplified approximation of "reality" or more likely our world is complete fantasy. (I mean, round planets? Reallly?)

mugaliens
2007-Apr-22, 12:50 PM
I believe the Matrix was simply another programming construct designed to be a safety valve to protect the megalomaniacals who felt they needed to save the world.

Sort of gives them a purpose and prevents them from self-destructing in the standard Matrix programming that the others accept. The blue/red pill was simply a last-ditch test to gather direct input from the subjects themselves as to which way they'd rather go.

LurchGS
2007-Apr-22, 07:39 PM
I prefer the Black pill, myself

(rather obscure movie reference)

Donnie B.
2007-Apr-22, 08:10 PM
I prefer the Black pill, myself

(rather obscure movie reference)Would you be referring to the Black Capsule in M*A*S*H? That's not so obscure... but if you really mean the Black Pill, I'm drawing a blank.

LurchGS
2007-Apr-22, 08:15 PM
ah - Capsule... it's been years.


And it's certainly obscure to the crowd I hang with.. who can't even spell google!

Moose
2007-Apr-22, 09:04 PM
Would you be referring to the Black Capsule in M*A*S*H? That's not so obscure... but if you really mean the Black Pill, I'm drawing a blank.

That's not that superman-placebo sugar pill they had Klinger going on over, or are we talking something in the film (which I haven't seen.)

HenrikOlsen
2007-Apr-22, 09:31 PM
It's referred to in the title music lyrics.

LurchGS
2007-Apr-22, 09:35 PM
Moose -

Film - which was (as is usual in these cases where a TV show is spawned) immeasurably better than the tv show.

Pinemarten
2007-Apr-22, 10:22 PM
That's not that superman-placebo sugar pill they had Klinger going on over, or are we talking something in the film (which I haven't seen.)

I remember it as the dentist named "Painless" he was played by the same guy that played Yo-Yo in "Holmes and Yo-Yo". He had ED and wanted to 'end it all'.
The character never showed up in the series.

LurchGS
2007-Apr-22, 10:27 PM
well, he did fly out in the movie - so I would assume his tour was over.

(I never saw Holmes and Yo-Yo - I always equated him to Sgt Enright in McMillan & Wife)

Gillianren
2007-Apr-23, 01:31 AM
Moose -

Film - which was (as is usual in these cases where a TV show is spawned) immeasurably better than the tv show.

I don't care for the movie, particularly. For one thing, I happen to like Alan Alda a whole lot better than I like Donald Sutherland, not that I dislike Donald Sutherland. I also like the way the characters developed over the years.

Pinemarten
2007-Apr-23, 01:37 AM
When Alan Alda first met Donald Sutherland he said "Thank you for my life."

LurchGS
2007-Apr-29, 05:57 AM
I think the reason I liked the movie better (aside from not caring for Alda) is that the movie was a recounting of the author's experiences during the war. Some good, some bad, all bizzare.

The TV series started out well - but in short order got preachy. I won't take that from my Father, much less hollywood.

mugaliens
2007-Apr-29, 12:16 PM
But when you think of it - an infinite amount of time would be *plenty* of time for evolution to occur more than once. In just 4 billion years (here on earth) we've gone from pond scum to telemarketers..

I thought there was some evidence that it'd happened a couple of times (the pond scum, not the telemarketers)

LurchGS
2007-Apr-29, 05:06 PM
I thought there was some evidence that it'd happened a couple of times (the pond scum, not the telemarketers)

I'm not sure.. I seem to recall hearing of large die-offs, but not sure if it meant extinction.. other than the conversion from anabolic to oxygen consuming life forms (and even that didn't produce extinction that I know of)

cbacba
2007-Apr-29, 09:43 PM
I thought there was some evidence that it'd happened a couple of times (the pond scum, not the telemarketers)

mug,

sounds like you got it backwards, Some telemarketers evidently evolved into pond scum - or so the claim goes in the grocery store news tabloid.

On the real world scene we've had about 4.5 billion yrs or so on this rock - from the time it was a hot liquid surrounded by tremendous amounts of co2 like venus is today. Supposedly, it took around 200 mil yrs to get something going and maybe a few billion to go from there to the vacinity of here. I guess one could say several false starts - or early terminations also happened along the way.