The simulation argument: Some explanations

Analysis 69 (3):458-461 (2009)
Abstract
Anthony Brueckner, in a recent article, proffers ‘a new way of thinking about Bostrom's Simulation Argument’ . His comments, however, misconstrue the argument; and some words of explanation are in order.The Simulation Argument purports to show, given some plausible assumptions, that at least one of three propositions is true . Roughly stated, these propositions are: almost all civilizations at our current level of development go extinct before reaching technological maturity; there is a strong convergence among technologically mature civilizations such that almost all of them lose interest in creating ancestor-simulations; almost all people with our sorts of experiences live in computer simulations. I also argue that conditional on you should assign a very high credence to the proposition that you live in a computer simulation. However, pace Brueckner, I do not argue that we should believe that we are in simulation. 1 In fact, I believe that we are probably not simulated. The Simulation Argument purports to show only that, as well as , at least one of – is true; but it does not tell us which one.Brueckner also writes: " It is worth noting that one reason why Bostrom thinks that the number of Sims [computer-generated minds with experiences similar to those typical of normal, embodied humans living in a Sim-free early 21 st century world] will vastly outstrip the number of humans is that Sims ‘will run their … "
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By Nick Bostrom (2003). Are We Living in a Computer Simulation? Philosophical Quarterly 53 (211):243–255.
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