Re: Any Transhumanists?
[quote author=“SpartanWarrior”]From the faq section, , he claims that this simulation argument is not a variant of “Descartes’ daemon or the brain-in-a-vat argument”.
Yes, well ... it appears to have a few differences, but those depend on questionable views about how future civilizations would spend their time (e.g., simulating past civilizations), and that they would do it effectively, and that entities simulated in simulations are themselves conscious.
It’s kind of an interesting thought experiment a la Derek Parfit.
It also reminds me a little of Pascal’s Wager, in that Pascal only assumes that one sort of god could be responsible for the wager. Also there are an infinite number of possible explanations for any possible ‘simulation’, and the assertion that we are living in one doesn’t decide between them.
[quote author=“SpartanWarrior”]My personal opinion is that the debate over whether a computer can be conscious will not be settled unless they actually succeed in building a conscious computer. Similarly with simulations.
Er, that begs the question. Also, whether a computer is conscious is only something knowable ‘from the inside’; the issue you’re after is something like the famous Turing Test. The Turing Test does not establish consciousness, only the behavior of consciousness.
Also, there is a distinction at least apparently between a computer being conscious and an element of a simulation running on a computer being conscious.
[quote author=“SpartanWarrior”]Modern-day followers of science-fiction religions include Tipler and the Omega Point Theory (the Omega Point will resurrect us as simulations), and the ‘Universal Immortalists’ (our highly advanced descendents will resurrect us as simulations).
I’ve heard of these guys but don’t recall anything about them.
[quote author=“SpartanWarrior”]One thing that bothers me about the simulation argument is that a former atheist told Bostrom that the argument is the best argument for the existence of god that he ever heard and thus became an agnostic. Why? I don’t understand why the simulation argument can be an argument for the existence of god…........?
??? Did he elaborate? The most it seems possible of showing is the existence of a very powerful civilization very taken with simulations.