• Count Timothy von Icarus
    534


    I don't see how this applies to most forms of idealism I am familiar with.

    In terms of the multiplication of entities, I think you are mostly right. However, the argument generally goes that:

    1. If the universe turns out to be fully broken down into discrete chunks (quanta), including discrete amounts of space and time, we have an issue. We have an issue because mathematics tells us we should be able to have continuous things, but instead we only have discrete things. Why would this be?

    2. If the universe is a finite collection of discrete bits, then in theory you could simulate it. S(M) without infinite subdivisions of space and time could be simulated without an infinite amount of computation.

    3. Simulation theory attempts to answer questions about the world that appear in physics to be brute facts. Why is there a limit on how fast objects can go? Why are objects not infinitely divisible? Why do we have a universe seemingly made up of small pixels, to use an analogy? Multiplying entities should be avoided, but in this case the multiplication is being invoked to answer a question that isn't currently answered. In this case, Ockham's Razor isn't being violated. Ockham's Razor does not entail that labeling everything as brute fact avoids multiplying entities. Indeed, each brute fact is its own ontological entity, and so simulation theory attempts to scoop up a bunch of these ontological primitives and explain them with one mechanism. A better critique might be that the claim is unfalsifiable and doesn't make any new predictions, but this is actually true of the entire field of quantum foundations so I'm not sure if it is fair to single out the simulation folks.

    4. Not directly related, but S(M) might only have to model the experienced of all humans (maybe not even all of them, some could be "NPCs"). Since the amount of data in consciousness is vastly smaller than the amount in "actual" space-time, the size of the simulation might be able to be vastly, orders of magnitude, more simple than we think it is. The Matrix AI only has to render what we're looking at. And indeed, simulation theorists use the fact that many phenomena don't have values until we look at them as potential evidence of the simulation hypothesis.
  • Outlander
    1.5k
    In computer science it is known that it takes more computational power to simulate a computer system than the computer system itself has; typically, much more.hypericin

    Is this kind of like how computers used to be the size of a wall and now we wear them on our wrists?

    Also,
    You can't create a simulation on an average computer where the electricity works differently than it does in real life? Of course you can- it's a simulation!

    For the record I do not believe reality is a simulation. More of a 'spiritual realms' guy myself. Now many people, for all intents and purposes, actually do live in man-made simulations, often of their own design- but that's another matter.
  • Count Timothy von Icarus
    534
    Or to make my point much simpler, the "brute facts of physics," the speed of light, the relative strengths and values of the fundemental forces, etc. are all irreducible ontological entities (maybe, some might be unified in the future).

    Simulation theory is attempting to reduce these brute facts to a single cause, so they are swapping a great deal of entities for just one. Thier case might be the more parsimonious actually, but the problem remains, why should we believe this?

    As for a simulation taking more information, that's aside the point for Ockham's. We're concerned about multiplying types of primitive things that can't be reduced not with there being a greater quantity of things.

    This is why scientists want to unify the fundemental forces, as they have with electromagnetism and the weak force, because it means fewer entities, even if the amount of information stays the same.
  • Agent Smith
    5.2k
    By understanding that if a simulation is a world it is no longer a simulation. A simulation only makes sense in light of a world.

    Is a map of the territory another "territory"? Just because the map does not represent itself on the map even though it is part of the territory does not mean that it is above and beyond the territory. It just means that it would be useless to do so.
    Harry Hindu

    Let's look at this from a human perspective. The possibilities are:

    1. We're in a simulation, meaning there's the real world + the simulation we're a part of.

    2. We're in the real world. This isn't a simulation.

    Your point is that the simulation is part of the real world, whichever world that is, and that implies that I'm wrong (about the simulation hypothesis being a perfect Harry client for the novacula Occami :snicker: ).

    Let's do the math.

    From the simulator's point if view: Real world + The Simulation it creates = Real World (no issues).

    From the simulated's point of view: The Simulation it's part of + The real world of the simulator > The Simulation it's part of.
  • Michael
    10.6k
    and yet S(M) is always more complex than M, S(M) can always be discarded via Occam's Razor.hypericin

    You should check out Boltzmann brains, because according to that M is much more complex than S(M):

    The Boltzmann brain thought experiment suggests that it might be more likely for a single brain to spontaneously form in a void (complete with a memory of having existed in our universe) rather than for the entire universe to come about in the manner cosmologists think it actually did.

    ...

    In Boltzmann brain scenarios, the ratio of Boltzmann brains to "normal observers" is astronomically large. Almost any relevant subset of Boltzmann brains, such as "brains embedded within functioning bodies", "observers who believe they are perceiving 3 K microwave background radiation through telescopes", "observers who have a memory of coherent experiences", or "observers who have the same series of experiences as me", also vastly outnumber "normal observers". Therefore, under most models of consciousness, it is unclear that one can reliably conclude that oneself is not such a "Boltzmann observer", in a case where Boltzmann brains dominate the Universe. Even under "content externalism" models of consciousness, Boltzmann observers living in a consistent Earth-sized fluctuation over the course of the past several years outnumber the "normal observers" spawned before a Universe's "heat death".

    As stated earlier, most Boltzmann brains have "abnormal" experiences; Feynman has pointed out that, if one knows oneself to be a typical Boltzmann brain, one does not expect "normal" observations to continue in the future. In other words, in a Boltzmann-dominated Universe, most Boltzmann brains have "abnormal" experiences, but most observers with only "normal" experiences are Boltzmann brains, due to the overwhelming vastness of the population of Boltzmann brains in such a Universe.
  • Michael
    10.6k
    Is a map of the territory another "territory"?Harry Hindu

    It can be, e.g:

    773AC938-0334-4BCC-910E-0F78126BAFE0_w1071_s_d3.jpg
  • Count Timothy von Icarus
    534


    There is a Borges story, "On Exactitude in Science," about map makers who were so accurate that they would make 1:1 scale maps the same size of the territories they were mapping. Not only this, but they would carry forward enough detail that the two became indistinguishable.

    Similarly, with "Funes the Memorious" there is a character whose memory is exact. He can relive entire days, but it takes him 24 hours to do so. He rejects objects. For example, referring to Carlos's dog is ridiculous, you should refer to Carlos's dog on January 19th at 8:32 AM, as that dog is totally different from the one on February 11th at 6:01 PM.

    I thought they were clever little ways to poke fun at the way some metaphysics seems pretty arbitrary, grounded in human capabilities and nothing more.
  • Harry Hindu
    4.8k
    Is a map of the territory another "territory"?
    — Harry Hindu

    It can be, e.g:
    Michael

    That's pretty cool. I can't imagine the the time that went into making that.

    My point was that even the map is part of the territory depending on how much territory we're talking about. For instance, that map is part of the territory of the Earth that is taken to represent another part territory of the Earth, just on a smaller scale and with less detail. For instance the map you posted does not include the people of that territory. It can only represent so much being on a smaller scale than what it is representing. What parts of the real territory it represents and what parts it doesn't depends on the map-maker's intentions and goals.

    Now that I think about it, a map can include itself on the map. When hiking nature trails, you will find a sign post that contains a map of the surrounding territory with a mark on the map labeled, "You are Here". It's not really where you are, it's where the map is because you move along on the trail but the map and it's mark of where "you" are doesn't move. So the mark is really where the map is, not where you are.
  • Harry Hindu
    4.8k
    Let's look at this from a human perspective. The possibilities are:

    1. We're in a simulation, meaning there's the real world + the simulation we're a part of.

    2. We're in the real world. This isn't a simulation.

    Your point is that the simulation is part of the real world, whichever world that is, and that implies that I'm wrong (about the simulation hypothesis being a perfect Harry client for the novacula Occami :snicker: ).

    Let's do the math.

    From the simulator's point if view: Real world + The Simulation it creates = Real World (no issues).

    From the simulated's point of view: The Simulation it's part of + The real world of the simulator > The Simulation it's part of.
    Agent Smith

    I don't understand your point.

    It's really simple. A simulation is part of reality in the same way that the Earth is part of reality and the same way the Andromeda galaxy is part of reality and the same way our universe is part of the multiverse (reality). It's not a mathematical relation. It's a spatial relation.

    Even heaven and hell (if they were to exist) are part of reality with reality being the entirety of all causal relations. The events in our universe would have a causal relation with the events in heaven and hell with your actions here in this world determining whether you go to heaven or hell, and God - being in heaven - creating the universe. Heaven, hell and our universe would not be separate "realities". They are all part of one reality because they all interact with each other (Occam's Razor) and any boundaries between them would be arbitrary constructions of our mind.
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    I don't understand your point.Harry Hindu

    Not surprised.
  • Agent Smith
    5.2k
    You have a point monsieur - the simulation is part of the real world; you said the same thing about the notion of unnatural many suns ago if you recall.

    The difference between unnatural and simulation is that yhe latter is a world and so deserves, how shall I put it?, equal respect as the real deal.
  • Harry Hindu
    4.8k
    You have a point monsieur - the simulation is part of the real world; you said the same thing about the notion of unnatural many suns ago if you recall.Agent Smith
    What I said about the distinction between natural and unnatural (artificial) has nothing to do with the distinction between reality and simulation.

    The difference between unnatural and simulation is that yhe latter is a world and so deserves, how shall I put it?, equal respect as the real deal.Agent Smith
    So you think that simulated people deserve the same rights as real people?
  • Agent Smith
    5.2k
    What I said about the distinction between natural and unnatural (artificial) has nothing to do with the distinction between reality and simulation.Harry Hindu

    That's an odd statement to make.

    So you think that simulated people deserve the same rights as real people?Harry Hindu

    We could be simulations, in fact that's what follows if you think my argument based on the novacula Occami is flawed and you do. Do we deserve the same rights as our creator(s)?
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