Do we live in a computer simulation?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

In 2003 Nick Bostrom from Oxford University published an interesting article in Philosophical Quarterly. He argued

that at least one of the following propositions is true: (1) the human species is very likely to become extinct before reaching a ‘posthuman’ stage; (2) any posthuman civilization is extremely unlikely to run a significant number of simulations of its evolutionary history (or variations thereof); (3) we are almost certainly living in a computer simulation. It follows that the belief that there is a significant chance that we shall one day become posthumans who run ancestor-simulations is false, unless we are currently living in a simulation.

Since then he has set up a dedicated website for his ‘simulation argument’. Wikipedia has a related entry. Interesting thought, but don’t loose your sleep over it 🙂