Friday 22 March 2019

Born to do Math 113 - Matrioshka Embedment of the Universe: A World Behind the World or "Thank You and Fuck You, God"

Born to do Math 113 - Matrioshka Embedment of the Universe: A World Behind the World or "Thank You and Fuck You, God"
Scott Douglas Jacobsen & Rick Rosner
March 22, 2019

[Beginning of recorded material]

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: Okay, let's continue on the ideas of information discussed...

Rick Rosner: Basically, we have been talking off-tape roughly about the hardware that supports the information that the universe consists of, and if we can derive any subtle conclusions about the hardware or the world behind the world.

My claim is that you can make up stories or science fictioney stories about the world behind the world and the objectives of the beings, or the entities, either whose brains contain the information that the universe consists of or who build something, the hardware, that provides the support structure that contains the information that the universe consists of.

But in terms of deriving any conclusions that subtle about the ways in which those beings are like, we are really limited. You asked, "Can we, at least, disallow magic in the world?" I said, "No." A powerful entity with a lot of computing power could build a toy world in which the rules of physics could be violated.

Jacobsen: Do we live in such a world?

Rosner: It is doubtful. There are some arguments to be made that a world that proceeds according to the rules of physics, a rule set in motion and then proceeds according to the rules of physics, is more efficient in terms of computing power compared to a world constantly fiddled with to allow magic.

I would argue that worlds that follow the rules of physics are more probable than toy worlds. Although, that's a hard argument to make. We seem to live in a world that follows the rules of physics. It seems intuitive that such a world would be more probable than a toy world, which is equivalent to a Matrix-type world.

A world that is created. A world of limited scale that appears to be of a larger scale designed to contain conscious entities that are being fooled about the scope of the world. The people in the Matrix think that they are living in the full natural world.

Until, they take the red pill. Then they realize that they are living in the Matrix world. It seems intuitive that the natural world is less unlikely than some toy world. On the other hand, we are on the verge, technologically, of building all sorts of toy worlds that contain or have the capacity to contain conscious beings.

So, that argument will be hard to defend. It is not unreasonable to think that a video game or some video games 25 years from now will allow you to play, operate, guide, or have as part of your world, creatures that are conscious within their simulated worlds.

If you wanted to drop in Al Capone or Abe Lincoln, or Jane Austen into your simulated world, you would be able to drop in a conscious being that has been built in based on the best guess of what Al Capone, Abe Lincoln, or Jane Austen would be.

This being would wake up in this world and believe the world is some version of the world. You could brief the conscious being and say, "This is a simulated world. You're a simulated being. This is an afterlife of sorts," or, "This is not an afterlife. This is a world you have been technologically resurrected into."

You would have beings living in toy worlds. Given the way technology is going, it is not unreasonable to think that there will be tens of millions of toy worlds in operation at any given time. Maybe, we will develop ethics as to what is or is not fair to do to beings that are artificially conscious.

Maybe, it will be free for all. These simulated beings will come into existence and then be slaughtered over and over again. Everybody will think that it is alright because once their consciousness ends in the game, then it is no harm and no foul because no memory or trace persists of the suffering, because the entire simulated being along with its memory and experiences is erased.

Or maybe, there will be more durable simulated beings that can live from iteration to iteration, where this will put limits on how much suffering you can put a durable simulated being through. But you can certainly design worlds.

If you can simulate consciousness, there are degrees. One is fake, like Cortana and Alexa. Their creators aspire to have you think of them as almost conscious beings. You can have more and more sophisticated versions of that without them being conscious.

You can have simulated beings who have actual consciousness. You put them in video games. Those  video games may be more interesting. It may be that the hottest video games of 2044 may allow you to pilot conscious simulated beings in a simulated world.

You may even have a conscious buddy, like a Cortana who is with you half of the time and is conscious to some extent. Where, she functions as a real-life imaginary friend. Toy worlds and conscious simulated beings are coming.

They are coming within this century. You can't have worlds that allow magic, but simulated ones can. There are arguments as to why magic worlds are less probable than worlds without magic, where the most persuasive arguments lie in the realm of not having a really big ass world.

It is more likely to have a really big ass world that follows the rules of physics. The argument is that it is likely that a big ass world is not an engineered world. It is kind of naturally evolved. This isn't even a discipline that exists yet.

The logic and epistemology of real versus simulated worlds. It seems intuitive. A big ass world or a world that we live in and apparently contains 10^85th or so particles is likely to be a non-engineered world. Because, for it to be an engineered world, it requires a world that contains it that would be much bigger than the world that contains the natural version of our world.

I don't know if that is our argument. Also, there are arguments to be made that if you are going to violate the laws of physics. It will require keeping track of the moment to moment affairs of the universe to maintain consistency, which is part of the package of the natural worlds of physics if you don't mess with the rules of physics.

You get the consistency kind of built-in. It doesn't require the massive moment to moment bookkeeping to maintain consistency if you are going to start allowing magical glitches in the world. There's a whole field of metaphysics and perhaps physics that could address the demands of a naturally progressing world versus a world that gets messed with - for the sake of magic or superheroes or narrative and excitement.

Jacobsen: How does this relate to two things? One is the structures relating to possible or potential functions. Another about the knowledge of possible functions of something given its structure. It is not precise, but it provides a context for heuristics of understanding.

Rosner: Your question makes me think of another question, which is, "How can we live in a world that is so tolerant of imprecision?" We consist of a bunch of tiny, tiny things: atoms and the particles that comprise atoms.

Those things exist on a scale of something like 1 ten billionths of a millimetre, really small. Those things are precisely located in space. The fuzziness doesn't kick in until you get to those tiny scales. The millionth of a micron scales. So if things are only fuzzy at a millionth of a micron, how can we do anything in the world where when you hit an elevator button, you're allowed a margin of error of like a half of an inch or more?

When you take a step, it doesn't matter where your foot lands within several inches. If you tried to step four feet in front of you, you would end up doing the splits. If you are just walking through the house or through the street, you have a margin of error as to foot placement that is a bunch of inches in either direction.

Part of the reason is that we're macro. We are these big and meaty constructions of a lot of cells. We are big and the macroness - I haven't thought this all through - of everything allows for macro margins of error, which is weird because we're built of the tiniest and most pin-pointy things in the universe.

To go to structure and function, it is kind of the same deal. If you look at it as whether or not you believe in God, look at what God has given us, it is the ability to exist in the world and to fill various drives and desires, because we are the current endpoint of evolutionary history that has covered several hundred million years.

It is coming with a technology that is encompassing several thousand years. We look at these as the natural progression of things. But for the sake of talking about it, you can say, "Thank you, God, for all this," but also, "Fuck you, God..."

Jacobsen: [Laughing].

Rosner: "...for the limitations of those things. If we're lucky, we will have 30 or 40 years of decay in mental and physical abilities on the way to death." Those things come from our place in a world that has been evolving 4.5 billion years since the Earth formed.

So, because we're macro and because we're sloppy and the products of persistent processes, we are able to operate in the world. We perform various functions. We develop tools to perform various functions.

You have been making arguments about trying to get at the world behind the world based on how our world functions; how a world of information that isn't our information but does follow the rules of physics and the operation of a large-scale world, the things this tells us is not much beyond the obvious.

That there is hardware. We can make various stories as to what the hardware might be. We can discuss the range of various hardwares based on our experience with hardware and mental ware or wetware in our world.

We know our brains can contain information. Our brains have a certain structure. We know computers contain information. We can imagine other structures that might contain information. We can even imagine structures that are so simple that they should not be able to contain information at all, like a Turing Tape.

Turing proved that a simple tape reader - a paper strip with holes punched in it - and a scanner that reads the holes punched in it. Given a paper strip long enough and rules simple enough, you could simulate a world of unlimited complexity.

Even though, you just have this strip of paper. It is possible to imagine all sorts of information containing structures. It is hard. I have not thought about it a whole lot in terms of what is the information containing structure that contains the universe.

But it seems pretty obvious that that structure would be vast in the amount of information that it contains the then the amount or length of time it has to exist for our world to persist across billions of years, and probably much more than billions of years.

It is along the metaphysics of all that and the epistemology of all is not worked out. It may be part of the future of thought. I think it will be.

That's that.

[End of recorded material]


Rick Rosner

American Television Writer
Rick Rosner

(Updated March 7, 2019)

According to semi-reputable sources, Rick Rosner has the world’s second-highest IQ. He earned 12 years of college credit in less than a year and graduated with the equivalent of 8 majors. He has received 8 Writers Guild Award and Emmy nominations, and was named 2013 North American Genius of the Year by The World Genius Registry.

He has written for Remote ControlCrank YankersThe Man ShowThe EmmysThe Grammys, and Jimmy Kimmel Live!. He worked as a bouncer, a nude art model, a roller-skating waiter, and a stripper. In a television commercial, Domino’s Pizza named him the "World’s Smartest Man." The commercial was taken off the air after Subway sandwiches issued a cease-and-desist. He was named "Best Bouncer" in the Denver Area, Colorado, by Westwood Magazine.

Rosner spent much of the late Disco Era as an undercover high school student. In addition, he spent 25 years as a bar bouncer and American fake ID-catcher, and 25+ years as a stripper, and nearly 30 years as a writer for more than 2,500 hours of network television. He came in second or lost on Jeopardy!, sued Who Wants to Be a Millionaire over a flawed question and lost the lawsuit. He won one game and lost one game on Are You Smarter Than a Drunk Person? (He was drunk). Finally, he spent 37+ years working on a time invariant variation of the Big Bang Theory. 

Currently, Rosner sits tweeting in a bathrobe (winter) or a towel (summer). He lives in Los Angeles, California with his wife, dog, and goldfish. He and his wife have a daughter. You can send him money or questions at LanceversusRick@Gmail.Com, or a direct message via Twitter, or find him on LinkedIn, or see him on YouTube.

Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Editor-in-Chief, In-Sight Publishing
In-Sight Publishing

(Updated September 28, 2016)

Scott Douglas Jacobsen founded In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal and In-Sight Publishing. He authored/co-authored some e-books, free or low-cost. If you want to contact Scott:, Scott.Jacobsen@TrustedClothes.Com, Scott@ConatusNews.Com,, Scott@Karmik.Ca, or SJacobsen@AlmasJiwaniFoundation.Org.

He is a Moral Courage Webmaster and Outreach Specialist (Fall, 2016) at the UCI Interdisciplinary Center for the Scientific Study of Ethics and Morality (Ethics Center), Interview Columnist for Conatus News, Writer and Executive Administrator for Trusted Clothes, Interview Columnist for Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN), Chair of Social Media for the Almas Jiwani Foundation, Councillor for the Athabasca University Student Union, Member of the Learning Analytics Research Group, writer for The Voice MagazineYour Political Party of BCProBCMarijuana Party of CanadaFresh Start Recovery CentreHarvest House Ministries, and Little Footprints Big Steps International Development Organization, Editor and Proofreader for Alfred Yi Zhang Photography, Community Journalist/Blogger for Gordon Neighbourhood House, Member-at-Large, Member of the Outreach Committee, the Finance & Fundraising Committee, and the Special Projects & Political Advocacy Committee, and Writer for Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy, Member of the Lifespan Cognition Psychology Lab and IMAGe Psychology Lab, Collaborator with Dr. Farhad Dastur in creation of the CriticalThinkingWiki, Board Member, and Foundation Volunteer Committee Member for the Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation, and Independent Landscaper.

He was a Francisco Ayala Scholar at the UCI Ethics Center, Member of the Psychometric Society Graduate Student Committee, Special Advisor and Writer for ECOSOC at NWMUN, Writer for TransplantFirstAcademy and ProActive Path, Member of AT-CURA Psychology Lab, Contributor for a student policy review, Vice President of Outreach for the Almas Jiwani Foundation, worked with Manahel Thabet on numerous initiatives, Student Member of the Ad–Hoc Executive Compensation Review Committee for the Athabasca University Student Union, Volunteer and Writer for British Columbia Psychological Association, Community Member of the KPU Choir (even performed with them alongside the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra), Delegate at Harvard World MUN, NWMUN, UBC MUN, and Long Beach Intercollegiate MUN, and Writer and Member of the Communications Committee for The PIPE UP Network.

He published in American Enterprise InstituteAnnaborgiaConatus NewsEarth Skin & EdenFresh Start Recovery CentreGordon Neighbourhood HouseHuffington PostIn-Sight: Independent Interview-Based JournalJolly DragonsKwantlen Polytechnic University Psychology DepartmentLa Petite MortLearning Analytics Research GroupLifespan Cognition Psychology LabLost in SamaraMarijuana Party of CanadaMomMandyNoesis: The Journal of the Mega SocietyPiece of MindProduction ModeSynapseTeenFinancialThe PeakThe UbysseyThe Voice MagazineTransformative DialoguesTreasure Box KidsTrusted Clothes.


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