Great article from Vice today exploring the probability that we may be living our lives in a computer simulation inside a computer simulation inside a computer simulation.
A few excerpts:
According to Moore’s Law, which states that computing power doubles roughly every two years, all of this will be theoretically possible in the future. Sooner or later, we’ll get to a place where simulating a few billion people—and making them believe they are sentient beings with the ability to control their own destinies—will be as easy as sending a stranger a picture of your genitals on your phone.
Right now the fastest NASA supercomputers are cranking away at about double the speed of the human brain. If you make a simple calculation using Moore’s Law, you’ll find that these supercomputers, inside of a decade, will have the ability to compute an entire human lifetime of 80 years—including every thought ever conceived during that lifetime—in the span of a month.
The universe is also pixelated—in time, space, volume, and energy. There exists a fundamental unit that you cannot break down into anything smaller, which means the universe is made of a finite number of these units. This also means there are a finite number of things the universe can be; it’s not infinite, so it’s computable. And if it only behaves in a finite way when it’s being observed, then the question is: Is it being computed? Then there’s a mathematical parallel. If two things are mathematically equivalent, they’re the same. So the universe is mathematically equivalent to the simulation of the universe.