Comic-book movies, in their own sprawling simulated narrative universes, have been raising the stakes to this level for years: Every summer we watch dozens of villains plotting to blow up the entire universe, but the motivations are always hazy. Why, exactly, does the baddie want to destroy everything again? Now we know.
(… or even ‘Reloaded‘):
… Musk is a respected billionaire everyone seems fascinated by; or at least they aren’t letting on that they think his suggestion is in any way out of the realm of possible… By contrast, while Dick was also a respected sci-fi writer, when he gave the audience his opinion about The Matrix, they all sort of looked at him like he was nuts.
“There’s a billion to one chance we’re living in base reality,” Elon Musk said tonight on stage at Recode’s Code Conference, meaning that one of the most influential and powerful figures in tech thinks that it’s overwhelmingly likely we’re just characters living inside a simulation.
— Cliff Pickover (@pickover) April 22, 2016
There’s something hideous about close approximations. They show how deeply it’s possible to be tricked.
Some exorbitant multiverse complications:
[Paul] Davies argued that in a multiverse, “‘fake universes’ would be even more likely to vastly outnumber real universes [than in our one universe without a multiverse], so that if we live in multiverse, we would be overwhelmingly more likely to be living in a simulated reality. But that would imply that the laws of physics in our universe are also overwhelmingly more likely to be simulations and therefore cannot be used to conclude that there is a multiverse! So there is an inconsistency at the heart of the multiverse concept.”
Let’s unpack the argument and lay it out. To Davies, “If you take seriously the possibility of a multiverse of all possible universes, including all possible variations, then there would have to be at least some of those universes where sentient civilizations would advance to the point where they would have sufficient computing power to simulate entire fake worlds (like in the ‘Matrix’ movies). Simulated universes are much cheaper to make than the real thing. So once you’ve got civilizations throughout the multiverse that can simulate universes,” Davies stressed, then this is what they will do, and do increasingly.
As a result, “the number of fake universes in a multiverse will proliferate greatly and very soon outnumber real ones.” [Is Our Universe a Fake?]
Fake universes, Davies said, “undermine all the arguments for a multiverse,” because arguments for a multiverse are based on the physics of this universe. “But if ours is a simulated universe, then our laws are simulated, too, which means that the whole of physics is a fake.” And if the whole of physics is a fake, Davies said, then the whole argument for a multiverse collapses. The reason is that while the multiverse argument proceeds from the physics humans have discovered in this universe, people cannot use this argument because it then leads, surprisingly, to the conclusion that this is a fake universe, with fake physics.
With Human Revolution, DeMarle and the narrative team had a bit of breathing room because the game was set so far before the original Deus Ex. There was time and space to build something totally new within the existing universe. But with Mankind Divided, and any other sequels that may follow, that space is shrinking. “With the sequel, we now have to stay true to what we were building,” she says, “but we also have to be aware that we’re getting closer and closer to the established future.”