Whoa: Physicists testing to see if universe is a computer simulation

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Quigley_Sharps, Dec 14, 2012.

  1. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    MatrixUniverse. Could this be a computer simulation? (Space.com)
    Will you take the red pill or the blue pill?
    Some physicists and university researchers say it's possible to test the theory that our entire universe exists inside a computer simulation, like in the 1999 film "The Matrix."
    In 2003, University of Oxford philosophy professor Nick Bostrom published a paper, "The Simulation Argument," which argued that, "we are almost certainly living in a computer simulation." Now, a team at Cornell University says it has come up with a viable method for testing whether we're all just a series of numbers in some ancient civilization's computer game.
    Researchers at the University of Washington agree with the testing method, saying it can be done. Asimilar proposal was put forth by German physicists in November.
    So how, precisely, can we test whether we exist? Put simply, researchers are building their own simulated models, using a technique called lattice quantum chromodynamics. And while those models are currently able to produce models only slightly larger than the nucleus of an atom, University of Washington physics professor Martin Savage says the same principles used in creating those simulations can be applied on a larger scale.
    "This is the first testable signature of such an idea," Savage said. "If you make the simulations big enough, something like our universe should emerge."
    The testing method is far more complex. Consider the Cornell University explanation: "Using the historical development of lattice gauge theory technology as a guide, we assume that our universe is an early numerical simulation with unimproved Wilson fermion discretization and investigate potentially-observable consequences."
    To translate, if energy signatures in our simulations match those in the universe at large, there's a good chance we, too, exist within a simulation.
    Interestingly, one of Savage's students takes the hypothesis further: If we stumble upon the nature of our existence, would we then look for ways to communicate with the civilization who created us?
    University of Washington student Zohreh Davoudi says whoever made our simulated universe might have made others, and maybe we should "simply" attempt to communicate with those. "The question is, 'Can you communicate with those other universes if they are running on the same platform?'" she asked.
    Brokor likes this.
  2. tulianr

    tulianr Don Quixote de la Monkey

    I hope that they accidentally learn something useful from all of that waste of effort. If this were a computer simulation, I wouldn't still be tired when I roll out of bed in the morning.
  3. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    Melbo believes in the matrix ;)
    ColtCarbine likes this.
  4. Ajax

    Ajax Monkey++

    It is possible to be so smart you are a complete idiot.
    Cruisin Sloth and ColtCarbine like this.
  5. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart,Deadman Walking, Snow Monkey Moderator

    Yep.... That is the definition of a Liberal Libtard......
    ColtCarbine likes this.
  6. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    and we probably paid for all that research via a Federal Grant. Once again something that is a total waste of taxpayer dollars, if this was the case.
    tulianr likes this.
  7. Ajax

    Ajax Monkey++

    What I find interesting is how so many scientists insist that the universe was big accident and there is no creator but then they seriously state that the universe could be a computer simulation.

    Guess what geniuses, God is the designer.
    gunbunny likes this.
  8. UGRev

    UGRev Get on with it!

    THEY DID IT!!! wooot!!! physicistsfindcad.
    TheEconomist and chelloveck like this.
  9. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    It's entirely plausible, since it wouldn't be completely impossible. The measuring problem concerning quantum physics is just one of many examples. In fact, the more we assign the human variable to the equation, and take in mind the macrocosm of the microcosm (man creating machine for example), the redundancy alone falls in line with other interesting effects such as fractal theory. This computer simulation theory comes as no surprise to me, and I personally find the Matrix movies to be quite amazing. Although I prefer to not lay all my bet on any single theory, it is nevertheless fascinating to me.

    After everything I have experienced and witnessed in this life, I would not permit my ego and emotions to rule by any factor my better judgement. You folks might want to reconsider a quick shun to these ideas; the computers of the future are slated to be organic -ask anybody who works in the field of nanotechnology.

    "If real is what you can feel, smell, taste and see, then 'real' is simply electrical signals interpreted by your brain." -Morpheus

    As for movies, they can have a duality to them which is commonly mistaken. Some believe if it is "just in a movie", it couldn't possibly be real. Fiction can sometimes be stranger than "reality", but to a person asking the right questions, what reality is may not always be too far from fiction.
    Quigley_Sharps likes this.
  10. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    I've considered the idea of a cosmic creator....just about every human culture has a creation myth in their grab bag of religious beliefs. I have always thought of our universe as being created by some nerdy cosmic science geek as a part of a failed lab experiment at God School, in Deistic Creation 101. (It cannot be said that the experiment was wildly successful...wisdom teeth surplus to requirements...a useless appendix, and a prostate gland anatomically positioned so that it can cut off my water supply in my dotage...WTF!) oh...and the afterthought of creating women from spare bits of male anatomy....hmmm....he must have gotten some grade reductions for that blooper.

    Now the alternative hypothesis is a nerdy computer geek creating a cosmic pornographic sim game for his amusement and the amusement of his nerdy God School frat buddies...like....Sim Universe!....now that would be a remarkable improvement for the ID crowd.
    Quigley_Sharps and Brokor like this.
  11. Ajax

    Ajax Monkey++

    Sure thing man, you can believe whatever you want and you will take your choices with you to the grave, if your willing to except that then it makes no difference to me, I could care less what you believe, think or what you want to trash.
  12. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    Thank you kindly for the concession, but it would seem that what I wrote did make enough of a difference to you for you to care sufficiently to post a response. There are few actions that we take in life that are without some consequence or other, often affecting others well beyond the duration of our own lifespans. As to what happens to us beyond our own physical life here in this universe, is speculative to say the least, despite the certitude of those who have a belief in an after life.

    I don't think that any belief system is so precious that it cannot be questioned and critiqued...even the idea of life as a sim in a simulated universe...with presumably simulated beliefs in simulated gods....it makes no less sense than the "just so" stories of bronze and iron age theologies...(and gunpowder and jet age theologies in the case of LDS and Scientology respectively).

    Who knows what conclusions might be drawn from the reseach into this particular area of enquiry, but usually there are some useful spinoffs from basic research, even if the discoveries are serendipidous accidents (the discovery of penicillin among other discoveries was unintended but useful none the less).

    Simulation hypothesis - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    tulianr likes this.
  13. UGRev

    UGRev Get on with it!

    I often wonder if you wonder how wondering can actually help you wonder how not to wonder about things that are full of wonder. Do you care so much as to wonder how traveling half of a half ad infinitum still allows you to achieve your result of arriving at point B? or if you just do this to make yourself sound like you could. I wonder if you interact by mere use of your mind. Stephen, is that you?

    Sometimes, just letting it go can help you move..on.
  14. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    It's a forum UGrev....open to those who have an opinion to offer, whether it be popular or unpopular, whether it be sensible or silly, whether it be serious or light hearted. There's no shortage of people here who have their obsessions and hobby horses and good luck to them; each and every one of them...I don't feel the need to offer them gratuitous advice to find something new or different to talk about or to hint that they should let go of what interests them, even though I may not share their interest or obsession. If someone wants to rabbit on about something that doesn't interest me or to debate something in an arcane or obscure way that doesn't gell with me...I just don't bother continuing to read what they write it. Often just the thread title, or the post contributor's handle is sufficient for me not to even bother looking at a thread or a post.

    For those who find that what I write bores them or distresses them....they are under no obligation to read what I contribute. They are welcome however to challenge the substantive issues that arise out of my responses.
    TheEconomist, oldawg and tulianr like this.
  15. UGRev

    UGRev Get on with it!

    Hopefully you don't think that I think your posts bore or distress me. On the contrary. I read, on average, 99% of your posts to completion. Admittedly, I have a short attention span to the point that if I could speed up with world about 20%, I'd finally be in sync with it and I could say with certainty that I would read 99.09% of your posts. However, that being said... your posts are interesting reads. I can't say that I agree with you all the time, but I suspect you already understand that.

    What I find most interesting is in your willingness to express yourself with such profundity to the a point that if it were a face to face conversation, I'd ask if you wanted another drink just see if you could speak while drinking. Not that there's anything inherently wrong with it, and that would be a neat trick for the ladies... but it almost seems like you over-complicate things; whether out of desire or just by nature. I think the latter is true here.

    Lastly, I'm honored to have you reply. It means that you likely read the first sentence of my post, at least half way (give or take a few letters).

    Even more lastly... you're a good guy. I like you more every day in spite of your verbosity. In a way, you remind me of my wife who can't sit still for more than 5 minutes. I sat on her one day to attempt to prove that point. She didn't like it much. I'm not sure if it was the fact that I sat on her, or the fact that she couldn't be in motion. I never bothered to ask for reasons which I think you would agree are obvious (if you're married).
  16. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    I have been married.....and do understand what you are saying.....most men have a daily quota of about 1500 to 2000 words a day to get through before they have exhausted their need for interpersonal communication...whereas many women have a ration of 10,000 words or more before they are even begin to slow down...by the time a guy arrives home after spending pretty much all of his talking ration...he's down to shrugs and grunts while his wife has quite a few thousand words to get through before her word store is exhausted....many successful marriages are built on nodding, smiling and preemptive agreement by men who's main focus is on the ball game or world championship wrestling! :oops:
    TheEconomist and UGRev like this.
  17. UGRev

    UGRev Get on with it!

    You complete me, lol. I love that you can accept a mild attempt at me roasting you with another, well expressed, reply.
    Hey guys! He can take a ribbing :)
    oldawg likes this.
  18. Ajax

    Ajax Monkey++

    Well, considering I posted in this thread first it would seem like your first sentence applies more to you than I.
  19. TheEconomist

    TheEconomist Creighton Bluejay

    I never thought about that. This does somewhat describe how things are some days...

    ...I am going to make an extra effort to engage my wife tonight...
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