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It's good because... It's bad because...
Debate Score:10
Total Votes:15
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 It's good because... (4)
 It's bad because... (6)

Debate Creator

Mack(534) pic

What do you think of this argument?

This is an argument (from Nick Bostrom,but in my own words) about the possibility that we live in a simulation like the matrix.  Given some assumptions about the possibility of convincing simulations (in link) it claims there are three possibilities, one of which must be true:

(1). Very nearly all (if not all) civilizations that come into existence will go extinct before being able to develop convincing simulations like the matrix.
(2). Civilizations that become able develop this technology are extremely unlikely to actually develop it, for whatever reason.
(3). It is very likely that you live in a simulation like the matrix, because if other civilizations do produce simulations the number of simulated beings would probably be much greater than the number of non-simulated beings.

It can then be argued that (1) and (2) are less likely than (3), and therefore we probably live in a simulation.

Here's a link for those who are curious (though I haven't read this specific paper), it's the actual paper by the guy who invented the argument:

It's good because...

Side Score: 4

It's bad because...

Side Score: 6
0 points

The real reality is complete and utter chaos and is raw chaotic creativity in a random manner.

Side: It's good because...
TheMask(127) Clarified
1 point

Somewhere in all that chaos enough order must exist to create beings which can create our world if it is indeed a simulation. Why do you think it's necessarily anymore chaotic than our universe? Perhaps it's less chaotic, or maybe it is both more chaotic and less at the same time. For example what if they are on a higher frequency than us, and their world is more ordered and complex yet oscillating so violently that it would rip us apart?

Side: It's good because...
Mingiwuwu(1469) Disputed
0 points

No, must not. It has to be total chaos absent of any logic so as to enable things to come to be from absence of anything.

Side: It's bad because...
0 points

Although it may seem quite speculative, that doesn't mean it is wrong. I find it hard to believe either (1) or (2), so I guess I'm left with (3). I don't see a fourth option, and I think the reasoning and assumptions are acceptable.

Side: It's good because...
1 point

Infinite number of universes means that all possibilities occur. Therefore in some universes someone made a simulation that is convincingly real and people are unwittingly part of it, however such instances would be rare.

Consider that there would need to be a strong motive for imprisoning unwitting people in a simulation given the costs of such an endeavor. Moreover, it is not clear that scientifically advanced races from another completely different universe would even want to create simulation technology in the first place; we are assuming that they would be like humans. This also applies to many other parts of the chain of events and development that has led us to create the simulations that we are capable of.

Side: It's bad because...

Though its a good argument, its still based solely upon speculation. Which leads me to believe that we exist in a non simulated enviroment.

Side: It's bad because...
0 points

The best argument against that is Occam's razor. We don't need the idea that we're in a computer simulation to explain anything, and it doesn't make a difference if it is a computer simulations we would never know till we are out of it

To me the whole argument is just another version of the ontological argument in a different guise

Side: It's bad because...
Mack(534) Disputed
1 point

Occam's razor favors the simpler explanation over the more complex one only when there isn't compelling reason to believe the more complex one. To use Occam's razor as a counterargument here is to beg the question - to assume that there isn't compelling reason to believe this argument (or to assume that the argument isn't sound). Also, the simulation hypothesis as it is used here isn't intended as an explanation, it is simply a conclusion about the way the world is through reason.

I agree that it doesn't make much difference if we are simulated, I think we would still be 'real,' in a sense, but that is irrelevant to whether the argument works.

I don't see how it is another version of the ontological argument (which I think is sucky argument). It is of the same style of reasoning - a priori / armchair reasoning, yes, but that doesn't make it flawed in the same way.

Side: It's good because...
Dermot(5451) Disputed
1 point

Who’s doing all the downvoting ?

It seems very much like the ontological argument to me. Because we can think it, it must be possible.

Because we can simulate things, therefore it must be possible for a simulation to exist complicated and large enough that could simulate us.

It also leads to an infinite regression. If we are in a simulation, there's no reason why the simulators aren't also subject to the same likelihood and are also in one, and so on and so on.

Side: It's bad because...