An audacious theory has the support of a surprising number of Silicon Valley's biggest players: that all of humanity and the world as we know it is a giant, Matrix-style, computer-based "simulated reality" created by an advanced civilization.
In 2003 Oxford philosopher Nick Bostrom published a paper entitled “Are You Living in a Computer Simulation?” The theory posited that one of three possibilities for the future must be true: The first two lay out the very plausible paths to the idea that we do not live in a simulation.
The third, as Bostrom explained to VICE News, is "literally the hypothesis that we and everything around us that we see exists because it is implemented on some computer built by some advanced civilization.”
The theory has ardent supporters in Silicon Valley, including Tesla founder Elon Musk. But others aren't so sure. Like Lisa Randall, a professor of science at Harvard. “It's just not much of a theory; it's just an idea," she told VICE News. "I don't really understand why so many people are thinking about it right now either. There's a lot of hubris in thinking that this is what's happening.”
VICE News spoke to Bostrom, Randall, and Columbia professor Brian Greene about the theory.
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