The idea that observable physical reality may be a simulation has recently gained attention even from professional theoretical physicists and... Read More
The idea that observable physical reality may be a simulation has recently gained attention even from professional theoretical physicists and philosophers. If this was true it would change what it is that we need to explain. As simulations we would be the product of some intelligent beings and therefore explanations of the ultimate nature of reality would have to be based on categories of mind (intentions etc.) and not physical laws alone. Thus, if we are simulated, what has been learned by the programmers when I painted this picture ? More specifically, would it be possible for them to recognize the allusions in the picture to cave paintings and how the meanings and ambiguities are formed in the contemporary context ?
I think the fundamental problem with the simulation hypothesis is that it fails to realize that simulating a thing or a process is not the same as understanding it. The simulators would not understand the nature of the entities that emerge in the results (living things, humans, societies or culture). In the same vein, simulations cannot explain the human mind or culture to us either.
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