Philosopher: 20 percent chance we’re living in a computer simulation

16 Aug

From the New York Times:

Dr. Bostrom assumes that technological advances could produce a computer with more processing power than all the brains in the world, and that advanced humans, or “posthumans,” could run “ancestor simulations” of their evolutionary history by creating virtual worlds inhabited by virtual people with fully developed virtual nervous systems.

…There would be no way for any of these ancestors to know for sure whether they were virtual or real, because the sights and feelings they’d experience would be indistinguishable. But since there would be so many more virtual ancestors, any individual could figure that the odds made it nearly certain that he or she was living in a virtual world.

…“My gut feeling, and it’s nothing more than that,” he says, “is that there’s a 20 percent chance we’re living in a computer simulation.”

Via Buzz Out Loud

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