Are we living in a computer simulation run by a post human civilisation. Some people believe we are and cite statistics as proof of this.
One extraordinary concept of modern thought is the idea that life as we know it and perceive it may not be as real as it seems. This theory holds that each one of us may represent no more than a model within a giant computer simulation run by a super civilisation of the future.
Post Human Civilisation.
Some even theorise that such a program may actually be the work of a post human civilisation out to construct a vivid and totally authentic simulation of what life was like thousands of years in the past. This of course means that we would be living out a simulation of events as a form of entertainment orchestrated for the enjoyment of a civilisation that may not even be of human origin.
Just to emphasise the true depth of this concept it is important to mention that this simulation would be just one of millions like it, all run to different specifications and each one representing a distinctly altered view of the world as seen from the perspective of billions of separate individuals. The name of this idea is Ancestor Simulation.
Not so crack pot.
You may suppose ideas of this sort are eccentric beyond words – something so far fetched it would be too ludicrous to contemplate. However in today’s altered academic environment that now includes the String Theory, Chaos, Quantum mechanics, and time travel , the arrival of an idea like Ancestor Simulation is surprisingly sane and one that some scientists and philosophers are treating with a great deal of respect.
Ideas of being imprisoned within cyberspace have already formed the inspiration for numerous films like the Matrix. In fact the idea of Ancestor Simulation has been around for quite some time. However it did not receive widespread publicity until 2001 when Nick Bostrom from the Department of Philosophy at Oxford University in England wrote a paper entitled “Are you living in a computer simulation”?
With great scholarly logic Bostrum argues that a post human civilisation of immense computing power would not hesitate to inaugurate major computer simulations accurate to the tiniest level. This would include sentient but simulated individuals that could accurately mimic the real world at any given stage in history. Bostrum argues that “we are almost certainly living in a computer simulation”. In the abstract to his paper, the final version of which appeared in the Philosophical Quarterly (2003), Vol. 53, No. 211, pp. 243-255.
Bostrum writes the following:
This paper argues that at least one of the following propositions is true: (1) the human species is very likely to go extinct before reaching a “posthuman” stage; (2) any posthuman civilization is extremely unlikely to run a significant number of simulations of their evolutionary history (or variations thereof); (3) we are almost certainly living in a computer simulation.
It couldn’t be …