Nick Bostrom's revelations about his hypothesis of simulating our reality

In 2003, Nick Bostrom, the future professor andDirector of the Institute for the Future of Humanity at the University of Oxford, and at that time a philosopher from Yale University shook the scientific community with his work “Are we not living in a computer simulation?” the question of whether our reality can be a very complex computer model. If you watched the Matrix film trilogy, the basic concept of this idea will be familiar to you.

The film is about a computer hacker,who joins the uprising against the machines that have taken possession of the world, possess artificial intelligence and keep in computer-modeled reality (the very “Matrix”) all of humanity, which does not even suspect that their bodies serve as machines for biochemical batteries.

In one of his last interviews hegave the Vulture portal, Nick Bostrom admitted that he hadn’t actually watched a sci-fi blockbuster that came out in 1999 when he was preparing his article on the computer model of our reality. Can this be called a glitch of the Matrix? No, says Bostrom.

According to him, the proposed hypothesis of simulationour reality has become the logical culmination of two things: his interest in the anthropic principle (explains from a scientific point of view why a number of non-trivial relations between the fundamental physical parameters necessary for the existence of intelligent life) occur in the observable universe, which at one time became the subject of his doctoral dissertation as well as his thirst to find out what potential impact on humanity in the future could have the technological development of our civilization.

“When you combine these two things, you are literally a step away from the simulation hypothesis,” commented Bostrom Vulture.


At first glance, the hypothesis of the simulation of Bostrom is notlooks as wild as the same grim future is described in The Matrix. There are no oracles, kung-fu and time dilation in it - only the assumption that at least one of the following hypotheses about our future may be true:

Humanity is likely to become extinct before it reaches the posthuman state (the so-called era of transnghumanism)

According to Bostrom, transhumanism will come then,when a person will be able to discover and achieve almost all the technological capabilities, given the physical limitations of our Universe. This would also include a technology that made it possible to create a convincing computer model of reality, similar to the one that could make hacker Neo believe that he is an ordinary programmer named Thomas Anderson.

One day, humankind will reach the era of transhumanism, but “extremely unlikely” that it will be able to create a significant amount of stimulation of its history.

If so, then I would like to believe that this is only because we will be too busy forming intergalactic alliances or opening the eighth Jurassic Park in the world.

We "almost certainly" live in a computer simulation of the history of a posthuman civilization

Oddly enough, this statement hasmath argument In the end, if humanity has already reached the “posthuman” stage and decided to create computer simulations of its history, then such simulations should already be a great many. At the same time, among all these models there will be only one “real” reality, and this, according to Bostrom, makes it much more likely that we live in one of these “fakes”.


If our reality, how to say it,really real, then we still have a lot of time and possible ways for how and when to reach the posthuman epoch (if, of course, we ever reach it at all - see the first assumption). However, this does not prevent people like Neil DeGrasse Tyson and Ilon Musk from showing hypersensitivity to the hypothesis proposed by Bostrom.

Moreover, it is said that some Westernbillionaires from the world of technoindustry pay scientists to try to “free us from the shackles of computer simulation”. Bostrom does not share this idea and says that everyone needs to calm down a bit.

"It is extremely unwise to try to break free fromhypothetical computer simulation. The probability of success in this matter will be minimal. If this does not work, it will be a common waste of a huge pile of money, but if it works, it can be a disaster for all of humanity. In this case, before trying to do this, it’s best to sit down and think about whether it really benefits, ”says Bostrom.

Do you understand, Silicon Valley? The matrix is ​​not going anywhere, so you had better relax and eat Twix not to try to force humanity to take the red pill.

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