As outlined in this recent paper, “Constraints on the Universe as a Numerical Simulation,” some physicists have proposed a method to test whether our universe is a numerical simulation. Given that the technical aspects of the paper are hard to understand without the requisite education, the philosophical side of the coin captures me more — though I would love a cogent summary of what a “lattice QCD” is.

The graduate thesis of some slacking student who belongs to a inconceivably advanced civilization — I’d be curious to see if that’s all we are.

In some of the comments discussing this paper online, people have questioned the societal ramifications and implications should we discover that we are residing in a civilization, that we ourselves are essentially more nuanced Sims. The obvious notion that there would be adamant rejection of the conclusion by a set of the global populace, especially and ironically by the heavily religious, was mentioned. Others discussed the possibility that throngs of people would give up spending effort on their lives, no longer seeing any point to their simulated existence.

Me? I’d marvel at the discovery for a couple minutes. Then I’d go back to checking my EMail. And dream about my next adventure.

So what if we are a simulation? I’d still want to make this the most pleasant and habitable numerically simulated Earth possible.

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