Elon Musk: The chance we are not living in a computer simulation is ‘one in billions’

Elon Musk, SpaceX CEO: ‘One-in-billions’ chance humans not in computer simulation

Humanity will eventually produce video games ‘indistinguishable from reality’

Elon Musk has said that there is only a “one in billions” chance that we’re not living in a computer simulation.

Our lives are almost certainly being conducted within an artificial world powered by AI and highly-powered computers, like in The Matrix, the Tesla and SpaceX CEO suggested at a tech conference in California.

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Mr Musk, who has donated huge amounts of money to research into the dangers of artificial intelligence, said that he hopes his prediction is true because otherwise it means the world will end.

“The strongest argument for us probably being in a simulation I think is the following,” he told the Code Conference. “40 years ago we had Pong – two rectangles and a dot. That’s where we were.

“Now 40 years later we have photorealistic, 3D simulations with millions of people playing simultaneously and it’s getting better every year. And soon we’ll have virtual reality, we’ll have augmented reality.

“If you assume any rate of improvement at all, then the games will become indistinguishable from reality, just indistinguishable.”

He said that even if the speed of those advancements dropped by 1000, we would still be moving forward at an intense speed relative to the age of life.

Since that would lead to games that would be indistinguishable from reality that could be played anywhere, “it would seem to follow that the odds that we’re in ‘base reality’ is one in billions”, Mr Musk said.

Asked whether he was saying that the answer to the question of whether we are in a simulated computer game was “yes”, he said the answer is “probably”.

He said that arguably we should hope that it’s true that we live in a simulation. “Otherwise, if civilisation stops advancing, then that may be due to some calamitous event that stops civilisation.”

He said that either we will make simulations that we can’t tell apart from the real world, “or civilisation will cease to exist”.

Mr Musk said that he has had “so many simulation discussions it’s crazy”, and that it got to the point where “every conversation [he had] was the AI/simulation conversation”.

The question of whether what we see is real or simulated has perplexed humans since at least the Ancient philosophers. But it has been given a new and different edge in recent years with the development of powerful computers and artificial intelligence, which some have argued shows how easily such a simulation could be created.

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27 Comments

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  1. Agree with Gary Rezende why couldn’t i have been Doctor Who or Lara Croft but simulation definate. Only other explination is its information that cannot be destroyed everything that happens in the universe is recorded in its event horizon ad infinitum so could be the universe died eons ago and just keeps replaying it’s existance over and over again would explain deja vu in which case I’ll be re writting this comment in about 100 trillion years again same as last time

  2. Yes then I most assuredly exist during this moment as an illusion unto my own self.. My perception could be at or below what is considered normal.. Maybe?? The TRUTH is that we all exist together within this paradoxica state of Divine Consciousness.. We are all very closely connected on many levels.. Thoughts exist within the cerribrial cortex as electrical impulses at a detectable wave length.. The frequency bands cover a broad portion of the Alpha-NanoWave 8690-9790nhrtz.. Come Buy My Book Tomorrow When I’m Done Writing Draft #1 This will be Huge!!! I mean really Huge HUGE!! Together We Will Not Only Educate A Very Large Portion Of America But,, We Will Make America Great Again!! It’ll Be HUGE!!!

  3. Funny thing is we are the computer one of the most sophisticated successful the universe has come up with, odd thing is we still haven’t been able to decipher our capabilities we are able to connect with other dimensions through thought forms waves we are but a drop a part of the infinite universe in all its glory have you stopped to think the real meaning of created in the image of God

  4. The chance we are is equaly as high….
    Does this make me a genius? No ut just neans we are all still uneducated 😉
    The sooner we get disclosure… The bigger the lie gets… Something to ponder i guess

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