Re: effing the ineffable

From: Brian Atkins (
Date: Thu Jul 12 2001 - 20:49:49 MDT

Chris Hibbert wrote:
> Brian Atkins wrote:
> > wrote:
> > > Occasionally people ask if I want to upload when it becomes possible, and
> > > the answer is no. I want to enhance my mentality, but I don't want to
> > > climb simulated mountains, I want to climb the real rocks, eroding, subject
> > > to unpredictable weather, and requiring great effort to reach in some cases.
> >
> > See this is what I was talking about when I reviewed the Final Fantasy
> > movie. Many people when you talk about living in a computer/simulation
> > have this idea that it will be some kind of cheesy unrealistic sim. When
> > in actuality it can be just as real as the "real world".
> I don't claim it will be any less "realistic" than reality. By the time
> people (or at least I) will be willing to move in, the resolution will be
> as good as you want. But someone will have to have made a choice about
> which moment in the lifetime of the rock to recreate, and at what rate to

That "someone" will be you. And you can, if you want, climb a simulated
mountain that is an exact, down to every little micro-crack, copy of a
current mountain on the real Earth in realtime. In other words you can
import the real world in its current state into your VR, no problemo.

> let it erode, if at all. Different people will climb different mountains,
> and few of them will choose to climb with potentially fatal consequences
> enabled. It will be a different sport. I also climb at an indoor climbing
> gym. It's a different sport.

Again, you can climb this perfect virtual replica of realtime Mt. Everest
in an exact replica of your pre-upload body (or whatever) set to really
truly kill you if you fall. You can even do it with no backups of yourself
if you really want to. It's all going to be up to you. Other people can
climb with you, in fact perhaps there will spring up some kind of "real
world rockclimbing" league of people who are into climbing only realtime
replicas of Earth objects. Whatever blows your hair back...

The point I guess is that upload civilization is really a /superset/ of
"real" civilization. It can contain a complete copy of the real world,
in fact I think this is very likely. Or you can still transfer your
mind into some kind of robot body which might look and feel exactly like
an old-school human if you want to physically move around in the origin
world. Or you can create brand new worlds either designed by yourself
or randomly evolved and eroded. etc. etc.

> > BTW, you do
> > realize you may be already living in a sim right now?
> I realize that it's possible that that is how this reality is implemented.
> At this point, I don't see any reason to lend more credence to that
> hypothesis than to the one that suggests that there's an omnipotent,
> omniscient being who doesn't interfere in our affairs very often.

You might want to ask Nick Bostrom about that... he seems to find
evidence supporting the life-in-sim conclusion. If you found out you
were living in a sim, would that bother you?

> I should probably mention, in the context of recent discussions of
> filtering that I run my filters differently than most. I have the list
> turned off, except for authors whose writings I've chosen to read. I
> occasionally see a new name quoted in other people's replies, and decide I
> want to add that name to the list of people whose messages I see. Your
> name wasn't on my list before, so I only saw your message in Mike Lorrey's
> reply. I will add your name to my list. If there was more to your message
> than the paragraph I quoted above, I'd appreciate it if you'd resend it.

Nope that was it.

Brian Atkins
Director, Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Fri Oct 12 2001 - 14:39:44 MDT