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Elon Musk says that we are probably living in a simulation

Elon Musk thinks that we are all likely to be caught in a “Matrix”-like pseudo-existence.

(Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Elon Musk thinks that we are all likely to be caught in a “Matrix”-like pseudo-existence.

The universe is 13.8 billion years old, so all the civilizations that have arisen throughout the cosmos have had loads and loads of time to hone their technological know-how, the SpaceX founder and CEO explained this morning (Sept. 7) during a long, wide and very nice appearance on comedian Joe Rogan’s popular podcast, “The Joe Rogan Experience.”

“If you assume a rate of improvement on all games will be indistinguishable from reality, or civilization will end. One of two things will happen,” Musk said. “So, we are most likely in a simulation, because we exist.” [13 Ways to Hunt Intelligent aliens]

“I think that the most probably — this is just about probability, there are many, many, many simulations,” he added. “You could call them the reality, or you could call them multiverse.”

The “substrate” of these simulations are executed, whatever it may be, is probably quite boring, at least in comparison with the simulation itself, Musk also told Rogan.

“Why would you want a simulation is that boring? You would have to create a simulation that is much more interesting than the reality,” Musk said, referring to the video games and movies that man makes, which are “distillation[s] of what is interesting about life.”

The billionaire entrepreneur is far from alone in this interpretation; a number of physicists, cosmologists, and philosophers find the simulation hypothesis convincing. Even if an advanced alien civilization with a penchant for making simulations is ever to arise, the reasoning goes, then it can in theory pop out of thousands or maybe even millions or billions — of “fake” universes. And it would be difficult for the inhabitants of these digital spheres to find out the truth, because all the evidence it could collect, it would probably be planted by the creators.

Indeed, the simulation idea is one of the many possible explanations for the famous Fermi paradox, which basically asks, “Where is everybody?” (“Everyone” being aliens, of course.)

This was far from the only ground which Musk and Rogan during their 2.5-hour conversation. For example, Musk reiterated his concern about unregulated and uncontrolled artificial intelligence; stresses that a clear and attractive future for the mankind comes to exploring and settling other worlds both in our solar system and beyond; and discussed in the traffic-reducing potential extensive tunnel systems, which are Dull Company wants to build in the major cities all over the world.

Musk also spoke in detail about Tesla, the electric car company he runs, and the need for our species to wean itself from fossil fuels. Musk described the humanity mass movement of carbon from the soil to the atmosphere (and from there into the oceans) as an incredibly dangerous experiment whose final outcome is unknown.

“We should not do this,” he told Rogan. “We know that sustainable energy is at the endpoint. So why are we doing this experiment? It is an insane experiment. It is the stupidest experiment in human history.” [Images of Melt: Earth’s Vanishing Ice]

Musk also casually mentioned that he had an idea for an electric supersonic plane that takes off and lands vertically. But he said he had no views on the development of this concept as a priority at the moment, given the other pressing problems of the humanity to solve.

Musk and Rogan sipped whiskey during their conversation. And at one point, the comedian lights up a joint, and Musk took a puff.

This was apparently a rare event; the SpaceX CEO said he almost never smokes marijuana (which is legal in California, where The Joe Rogan Experience is stuck) and do not enjoy, because it undermines its famous productivity.

“It is like a cup of coffee in reverse,” Musk said. “I like to get things done. I like to be useful.”

He told Rogan that ideas bounce around in his head the whole time — “it is a never-ending explosion” — and that, he realized that he was different than other people, when he was just 5 or 6 years old.

“I thought I was insane,” Musk said. As a child, he added, he worried that authorities might notice his “strangeness” and put him away somewhere.

There was so many other interesting things. For example, Musk appreciatively treated with a samurai sword in the studio which Rogan said was 500 years old. And at one point towards the end of the call, Musk said: “This may sound corny, but love is the answer.” (Another choice quote: “I don’t know what would happen if I was in a sensory-deprivation tank. Sounds about.”)

You can watch the whole thing on The Joe Rogan Experience YouTube page.

Originally published on Space.com.

 

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