The Instigator
Illegalcombatant
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
meowmixxx
Con (against)
Winning
6 Points

It is more likely that we live in a simulated reality than a real reality (2)

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
meowmixxx
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/29/2011 Category: Society
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,337 times Debate No: 16205
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (9)
Votes (2)

 

Illegalcombatant

Pro

What this debate is about

This debate is about which it more likely when compared to the other, that we live in a simulated reality ? or that we live in a real reality ?

Burden Of Proof

Both sides have a burden of proof in this debate.

Pro will argue that its more likely that we live in a simulated reality than a real reality

Con will argue that its more likely that we live in a real reality than a simulated reality

PROBLEMS ?

If you have any problem with the debate please post in the comments section first so we can try to come to an agreement before starting.
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EXPECTATIONS

It is expected that both parties act in good faith, eg no semantics.
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Definitions

Simulated Reality = Simulated reality is the proposition that reality could be simulated—perhaps by computer simulation—to a degree indistinguishable from "true" reality. [1]

Reality = Reality is the state of things as they actually exist, rather than as they may appear or may be thought to be. [2]

We = Anybody or anything reading this debate.
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The argument that we most likely live in an simulated reality than an real reality.

1) It is possible to create a simulated reality
2) If something/s can create a simulated reality then it probably will
3) If something/s does create a simulated reality it will probably create more than one
C1) Therefore its probable that simulated realities outnumber real realities
C2) Therefore its more likely that something exists in a simulated reality than real reality
C3) Therefore we are more likely to exist in a simulated reality than an real reality

1) It is possible to create a simulated reality

Anything that is not logically impossible is logically possible.

2) If something/s can create a simulated reality then it probably will

Here are some possible reasons that something/s would choose to create a simulated reality......

1) Scientific/knowledge purposes - Running experiments in a real world is a pain, as you are confined to the natural laws in that real world. Running experiments in a virtual world is alot quicker, as you can by pass the natural world limitations and even set up scenarios which are difficult or impossible in the real world.

2) Entertainment - Think of the Sims or Virtual pets......... but in this case the Sims and Virtual pets are alot more advanced than what we are used too.

3) Curiously - Ever wondered what would happen in a simulated reality if we do xyz ? Well only one way to find out, and that's to create that simulated reality and do xyz.

4) Boredom - Somethings like humans might watch football, some other things might create simulated realities, to each their own.

5) Profit motive. $$$

6) Popularity, If some one else has one, I want one too.

3) If something/s does create a simulated reality it will probably create more than one

With one simulated reality created, there are two possible outcomes in relation to how many simulated realities will be created either.........

Set A) 1 created simulated reality (no more created after the first one)
Set B) More than 1 simulated reality (anywhere between 1 and infinity)

With one reality created, these two sets contain all possible outcomes of how many simulated realities are created. Basically either one sim and no more after that, or more than one, for example 2 or 3 or 4 or 5.....unto infinity

I am no maths person, but Set B holds alot more possible outcomes than situation A, like 99.9999999%+ more than Set A

Conclusions

The conclusion follow from the above premises.

C1) Therefore its probable that simulated realities outnumber real realities (From P1,P2 & P3

C2) Therefore its more likely that something exists in a simulated reality than real reality
(From P1,P2,P3 & C1)

C3) Therefore we are more likely to exist in a simulated reality than an real reality

I look forward to Cons response.

Sources

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...
meowmixxx

Con

I'd like to thank my opponent for giving me the opportunity to post about such an interesting subject. I'll begin by looking to my opponent's argument and taking out the syllogism in two ways; first, showing that some of the premises fail to obtain, and then an argument by substitution. Thirdly, I will argue that the only conceivable, physical simulated reality just would be the real reality. Finally, I will argue that it's more likely for us to exist in this reality than in any others using IBE.

Part 1: My opponent's syllogism
1. It is possible to create a simulated reality
My opponent points out that if it isn't logically impossible, than it is logically possible. I completely grant this, however, there is a very large gap between logical possibility and physical possibility. We have absolutely no reason to believe that this is physically possible. At the very least, it's metaphysically possible, but that brings nothing to the topic at hand, because we're talking about this world, not any possible other world. This should already bring the debate to a screeching halt, because there's no reason to think that it is physically possible; the burden of proof is on him to show that it is.

2. My opponent attempts to say that just because something is able to do something, it will. I find the reasons he gives unsatisfactory for two reasons:
a: He is anthropomorphizing said creature; there's no reason to think they'd have similar motivations.
b: There's no reason to think that ability entails probability. I have the ability to go do many things, but there's almost no reason for me to do so.

C1: Fails to obtain, because there's no reason to believe that a simulated reality could even exist in the physical world, only in possible metaphysical worlds.
C2: Also fails to obtain both because C1 fails to obtain, and because he never defines what it is for something to exist in a simulated reality. The question of what it is for something to exist in a simulated reality needs to be clarified by Pro.
C3: Fails to obtain because it doesn't follow from the premises, in that it makes no link between what some vague and potentially metaphysical "something" existing in a simulated reality, and us existing in a simulated reality. That is to say, that something could potentially exist in a simulated reality gives us no reason to believe that we live in a simulated reality.

Part 2: Argument from Substitution
This part will serve to outline just how easy it is to make my opponent's argument. Let's replace the words "simulated reality" with "reality made of sub-atomic marshmallow", given that these marshmallows are so small they will not ever be able to be learned about, and that the world is just as it would be without these marshmallows.

1) It is possible to create a reality made of sub-atomic marshmallow. (Logical possibility)
2) If something/s can create a reality made of sub-atomic marshmallow, then it probably will (Fun, tastes good, profit, and so forth)
3) If something/s does create a reality made of sub-atomic marshmallow it will probably create more than one (Argument from Disjunction)
C1) Therefore its probable that reality made of sub-atomic marshmallow outnumber real realities
C2) Therefore its more likely that something exists in a reality made of sub-atomic marshmallow than real reality
C3) Therefore we are more likely to exist in a reality made of sub-atomic marshmallow than an real reality

This illustrates that there really isn't a lot going for the simulated reality hypothesis, given that a simple substitution can reach the same conclusion. Because both Marshmallow hypothesis and the simulated reality hypothesis are untestable, they both give approximately the same amount of explanatory value. This means that there's a reason to think that we aren't in a real reality, but there is no reason to prefer a simulated reality over a marshmallow hypothesis. While you might think that this is a vote in favor of Pro regardless, remember that we could also substitute "simulated" with "real" and "real" with simulated, just in case we're in a simulated reality. This is another death knoll for Pro, since by his own argument, we could also show that we're more likely to be in a real reality than a simulated reality.


Part 3: Simulated = Real
As far as we know it, an sort of simulated reality would have to perform all the calculations present in the universe , it would have to simulate every sub-atomic particle, and so forth. However, it is not epistemically possible to calculate information perfectly to such a scale of degree without having the observed system being the size of the system. That is to say, to calculate the products of all chemical reactions in the universe, there's no reason to think that the best calculator for this wouldn't just be the universe itself. In other words, the only way to represent the universe computationally, is with the universe itself. If the universe were simulated by something far larger, than it's only simulated from their perspective, however, from ours, the universe isn't simulated, even if we found out that we were created by hyper-dimensional beings. The "simulated" universe would still be our universe, because it would be composed of the same 'stuff.' (Note that this argument is a further refutation of a simulated reality being physically possible, and says nothing about metaphysical possibility)


Part 4: Inference to the Best Explanation
This argument will largely be borrowed from Vogel [1]. My opponent lays out a minimal skeptical hypothesis (MSH) in that he is laying out an argument that when I claim that I see a cat in front of me, something is causing to not actually see a cat in front of me, and in this case, that something is the statement that I am in a simulated reality. This lacks explanatory value compared to the Real World Hypothesis, which states that I simply see a cat. MSH is weaker further because it can't explain the consistency that we see in the world: Why would a simulated reality behave as this world does, beyond it just being this world?

I think my opponent would want to say that his simulated reality conforms to our reality in the measure that it is predictable, that it is an Isomorphic Skeptical Hypothesis (ISH), in that it conforms strongly to the reality we think we're in. However, this ISH requires a lot of add-ons for it to work. For everything in the universe, it would require pseudo-time, pseudo-location, pseudo-properties, and so forth. So when I see a cat in my opponent's ISH, I'm not actually seeing a cat, I'm seeing a pseudo-cat with all the pseudo-properties that a real cat would have, in a pseudo-location at pseudo-time t1. On the other hand, the RWH lets me say that I see a cat, sitting on the table, at 10PM. This is a clear reason to prefer the RWH for two reasons:
1. It has more explanatory value, because rather than having to posit what it is that these pseudo-locations, properties, and so forth are, it lets me just call these things locations, properties, and so forth.
2. There's no need to posit extra "stuff". I have no reason to add on the pseudo, if I get just as good an explanation from the RWH. Adding on other stuff, in the sense of Occam's Razor, just makes the proposition less likely and less parsimonious. You should prefer the RWH because it doesn't need to conform to what we imagine is real, it just is, and hence is more likely. Us being in the real world is the best explanation for why we perceiving things as being in the real world, without having to come up with theories that tell us otherwise, with no strong reason to believe these alternate hypothesis. By logical abduction, the RWH is most likely.

Overview:
Part 1 shows the various ways in which my opponent's argument's don't obtain.
Part 2 shows a weakness in the Pro's BoP.
Part 3 is a further refutation of physical possibility.
Part 4 gives you conclusive reason to vote Con.

I now hand it over to Pro.
1. Vogel, Jonathan Refutation of Skepticism



Debate Round No. 1
Illegalcombatant

Pro

I thank Con for their reply.

1) It is possible to create a simulated reality

Con says "We have absolutely no reason to believe that this is physically possible"

Premise 1 does not state that the simulated reality has to be physical. It is not a necessary condition that the simulated reality be "physical".

Con says " there's no reason to think that it is physically possible; the burden of proof is on him to show that it is."

Once again, it is not a necessary pre condition that the simulated reality be physical.

Con says " At the very least, it's metaphysically possible, but that brings nothing to the topic at hand, because we're talking about this world, not any possible other world."

Our world doesn't have to be a world where its possible to create a simulated reality, after all, as this arguments shows, our so called world is probably a simulated world.

2) If something/s can create a simulated reality then it probably will

Con says "My opponent attempts to say that just because something is able to do something, it will."

This is a strawman. I never argued that just because something can do something, necessarily it follows that it will. I clearly argued that if something can create a simulated reality then its more likely that it will than it won't, and I gave some possible reasons.

Con says "There's no reason to think that ability entails probability. I have the ability to go do many things, but there's almost no reason for me to do so."

Indeed, unless there is a reason or reasons for you too do these things. I listed possible reasons why something with the ability to create a simulated reality would.

Con says "a: He is anthropomorphizing said creature; there's no reason to think they'd have similar motivations."

There is no reason to think that they don't have anything in common with humans either. As long as they have a reason, then its follows it is more probable they will.

CA = Counter Argument

CA: Cons Reality made of sub atomic marsh mellows argument

-- CA 2) If something/s can create a reality made of sub-atomic marshmallow, then it probably will (Fun, tastes good, profit, and so forth) ---

This argument doesn't show its more probable, cause if they wanted to eat marshmallows its is more probable that they would just create marshmallows than create a reality of sub atomic marshmallows.

Sure it might be fun, but is this the best they could come up with ? I think they can do better than that.

Profit ? maybe, but obviously if they were seeking profit, then they would create a reality which would be the most wanted. Is marshmallows the most wanted ? I doubt it.

Cons very specific simulated reality is less likely than a general simulated reality that I referred too , thus its an ineffective rebuttal.

CA Part 3: Simulated = Real

Con says "That is to say, to calculate the products of all chemical reactions in the universe, there's no reason to think that the best calculator for this wouldn't just be the universe itself. In other words, the only way to represent the universe computationally, is with the universe itself. If the universe were simulated by something far larger, than it's only simulated from their perspective,

I don't recall the universe being shown to be a giant calculator. But in any case, Con implies that the thing that is doing the calculating needs to be bigger than the simulated reality it is calculating. Even in our universe this is proven false, you don't need a calculator the size of a car, to calculate how fast its going. What matters is calculation power, not physical size.

CA: Part 4: Inference to the Best Explanation

Con asks "MSH is weaker further because it can't explain the consistency that we see in the world: Why would a simulated reality behave as this world does, beyond it just being this world? "

Why would a real world reality behave as this world does, beyond it just being a real word ?

Con argues that their real world hypothesis has better "explanatory" power. Even if this is true, so what ? How does this refute any of the premises in the argument ? It doesn't

Con says "Us being in the real world is the best explanation for why we perceiving things as being in the real world, without having to come up with theories that tell us otherwise, with no strong reason to believe these alternate hypothesis. By logical abduction, the RWH is most likely."

The sun circling the earth was the "best explanation" for why we perceive the sun rising up, and the sun going down too, how did that work out ? Obviously what we "seem" to "perceive" has be proven false time and time again. My argument is based on reason, not what is "perceived", so once again, how does any of this refute any of the premises in the argument ?

Con says " with no strong reason to believe these alternate hypothesis. By logical abduction, the RWH is most likely. "

I just gave you a reason to believe in an alternative hypothesis, and your justification for the RWH has been shown to be flawed. So it is not the case that the RWH is the most likely.

I look forward to Cons reply.
meowmixxx

Con

I think that my opponent has a few conceptual confusions, and also misunderstands my arguments in numerous locations. In this round, I will show where my opponent's argument failed to obtain out of the first round, and then present two horns to my opponents argument about possibility, and consolidate my views. Finally, there will be a defense of reason to the best explanation.

1. My opponent's syllogism:
My opponent cold drops the arguments I make on his conclusions, but most damning is that he drops C2 by omission and C3 totally. Recall that in C2 I said that my opponent needs to clarify what it is for something to exist in a simulated reality, otherwise it is unhelpful to understanding the situation.
But where you should really be ready to already stop thinking about Pro's position as viable is when you see that he dropped C3, which is the entire point of his argument. I argued that just because there is "something" that is more likely to exist in a simulated reality than a real reality, doesn't mean that it's more likely that WE live in a simulated reality: there is a massive epistemic gap, one that goes completely unaddressed. Remember, that something is more likely in one world doesn't mean it supervenes on this world.

2. Argument from substitution
While I will only cover this briefly, this argument still stands. My opponent misunderstands the goal, and drops the relevant part of the argument. The argument is solely intended to show that his syllogism only gains uniqueness due to ad hoc reasons for believing premise (2). He drops the point I make that in a nearby world where we believe we are in a simulated reality, his argument could just as easily be made for an argument that we are more likely to be in a real reality.

3. Argument on possibility
Let's set up some groundwork first. My opponent argues that if it isn't logically impossible, it's logically (let's say metaphysically) possible. My argument was thus: My opponent needs to give us a reason that the physical reality we live in could be simulated, but I think he misunderstood what I meant by physical. Physical possibility is just the possibility relating to what the world is actually like, I don't stipulate that it has to be made out of physical matter. None the less, because BoP is on both sides, he should be forced to defend what this sort of reality would be like if it weren't physical in the non-philosophical sense. Another confusion I think my opponent has is regarding to what metaphysical possibility is. Because something is metaphysically possible, that does not mean that it is possible in this world or in this given reality', where reality' signifies both this reality and some hypothetical simulated reality. In other words, there is no interaction between a metaphysically close world and this world, because the possible worlds theory only stipulates their existence, not any interaction. (Ex Hypothesi, it might insist that all possible worlds are closed systems). Hence, to say that it is metaphysically possible, or probable, says nothing about the probability of our reality'. My opponent needs to either explain why it is physically, or nomonologically possible, or what the link between a metaphysically possible world and our reality'.
A: Horn 1, Physical possibility
This argument is mostly held up by my argument against (1), where by there is no reason to believe that we are in a simulated reality, and by my third argument about a simulation being reality. Here again my opponent completely misses the thrust of the argument. My opponent makes an ad hoc argument about you not needing a calculator the size of a car, to calculate the speed of the car. This misses the point in two ways:
1. The speed of a car is only a contingent and temporal property of the car, it is not a calculation for the car. In other words, you aren't calculating the car, just something about the car.
2. I never claimed you need something scalar to calculate facts about something.

The argument was that were we to be in a physical reality, the only thing that is epistemically possible is that we are simulated by the matter itself, and we are being manipulated by something vastly larger. The reason is because the only thing that can represent a proton is a proton, nothing smaller can represent said proton because it lacks the completeness, and anything bigger contains "other information." In order to simulate a reality, it would have to be chunked out of mass. This shows that even if we are a "simulated" reality, our reality is still the way we perceive it.
B: Horn 2, metaphysical possibility
First argument: To say that because it is metaphysically possible, that it is more probable is a non-starter to take, because realities are closed systems, since otherwise we'd observe quantum crosstalk.
Second argument: Let [ brackets indicate some set.
Assumption: All possible worlds where there is the possibility for there to be a simulated reality have a real reality, because otherwise there would be nowhere to ground the simulation.
1. [All possible worlds] contain [worlds with simulations]
2. [All possible worlds] > [worlds with simulations], since for each world with a simulation, there could be an identical without.
C: There are more possible worlds than worlds with simulations. Using my opponent's syllogism, it is more probable we live in a real world

4: Inference to the best explanation.
Here, I'll quote my opponent:
Con argues that their real world hypothesis has better "explanatory" power. Even if this is true, so what ? How does this refute any of the premises in the argument ? It doesn't
Explanatory power matters because according to any kind of naturalist, reductive, or even intuitive account, what provides the most explanation with the most parsimony is also the most likely. Hence, since my opponent completely drops all of the pseudo-location arguments, you can easily see why we're more likely to exist in a real reality, rather than a simulated reality; it's far more parsimonious, as it requires far less stuff, while providing the same amount of explanation as any skeptical hypothesis can give. As for it not refuting any premises in the argument; it doesn't. My opponent apparently forgot that I also have BoP, Inference to the Best Explanation is my method of fulfilling that burden.

The sun circling the earth was the "best explanation" for why we perceive the sun rising up, and the sun going down too, how did that work out ? Obviously what we "seem" to "perceive" has be proven false time and time again. My argument is based on reason, not what is "perceived", so once again, how does any of this refute any of the premises in the argument ?
This argument doesn't hold relevance to IBE, had my opponent read up on the theory itself. The sun circling the earth is in no way a better explanation for anything, because it doesn't match up with our findings. We have lots of experience with math showing how the sun rising and setting works out, that also gives explanatory value to the other cosmic movements. Something is only the best explanation if it can account for all of the relevant information, something which "the sun revolves around the earth" fails to do. The perception claim was loose talk, the lines of reasoning were more along that of, it has to explain why the world functions as it does, given our body of evidence.

Regardless, my opponent completely conceded the pseudo-location / time / quality argument, as well as conceding that this gives them explanatory power. With explanatory power, we have the most reason and most probability to accept the RWH, because it doesn't require anything extra. Don't let him make ad hoc responses in his next speech, he had plenty of characters left to argue against IBE in terms of pseudo-propositions, which he completely fails to do. Thus far, my opponent is failing to fulfill his BoP, while I cleanly extend the warrants for mine without any real opposition.

I look forward to Pro's response.
Debate Round No. 2
Illegalcombatant

Pro

I thank Con for their response.

1) It is possible to create a simulated reality

Con asks "Recall that in C2 I said that my opponent needs to clarify what it is for something to exist in a simulated reality, otherwise it is unhelpful to understanding the situation. "

I refer Con to the definition given in the first round "Simulated Reality = Simulated reality is the proposition that reality could be simulated—perhaps by computer simulation—to a degree indistinguishable from "true" reality."

Con says "Because something is metaphysically possible, that does not mean that it is possible in this world or in this given reality" & "My argument was thus: My opponent needs to give us a reason that the physical reality we live in could be simulated"

If con is saying that's its impossible for our world to be a simulated world, then on what basis does con claim this ? Absent any reason to the contrary, then it is indeed possible that "our" world is a simulated reality.

CA: 2. Argument from substitution

Con says "his argument could just as easily be made for an argument that we are more likely to be in a real reality."

Then show how.

CA: 3. Argument on possibility

Con says "None the less, because BoP is on both sides, he should be forced to defend what this sort of reality would be like if it weren't physical in the non-philosophical sense"

Why ? Premise 1 doesn't make any claim about what "type" of simulated reality would be, other than it being a simulated reality.

Con says "In other words, there is no interaction between a metaphysically close world and this world, because the possible worlds theory only stipulates their existence, not any interaction. "

If a world is a simulated reality, then its a necessary that a real world is in casual relations with the simulated reality, since a simulated reality can't exist without a real world that was the origin of its existence, as Con later says "Assumption: All possible worlds where there is the possibility for there to be a simulated reality have a real reality, because otherwise there would be nowhere to ground the simulation."

CA: A: Horn 1, Physical possibility

Con says "The argument was that were we to be in a physical reality, the only thing that is epistemically possible is that we are simulated by the matter itself, and we are being manipulated by something vastly larger" & "In order to simulate a reality, it would have to be chunked out of mass. This shows that even if we are a "simulated" reality, our reality is still the way we perceive it."

Once again, my argument never said that a simulated reality has to be physical, it can appear physical but it doesn't have to be physical.

CA: B: Horn 2, metaphysical possibility

Con says "First argument: To say that because it is metaphysically possible, that it is more probable is a non-starter to take, "

Been over this, I clearly provide more argument to justify the probability argument, I never argued just because something is possible that in its self makes it more probable over its negation.

Con presents the following argument........

1. [All possible worlds] contain [worlds with simulations]
2. [All possible worlds] > [worlds with simulations], since for each world with a simulation, there could be an identical without.
C: There are more possible worlds than worlds with simulations. Using my opponent's syllogism, it is more probable we live in a real world

I agree that there "could be an identical world without", but I provided argument why it is more probable that something with the capacity to create a simulated world would, and would also create more than 1, thus its is more likely that there are more simulated realities than real realities.

CA: 4: Inference to the best explanation.

Con says "Hence, since my opponent completely drops all of the pseudo-location arguments, you can easily see why we're more likely to exist in a real reality, rather than a simulated reality; it's far more parsimonious, as it requires far less stuff, while providing the same amount of explanation as any skeptical hypothesis can give. "

I thank Con for bringing this to my attention.

Con says "So when I see a cat in my opponent's ISH, I'm not actually seeing a cat, I'm seeing a pseudo-cat with all the pseudo-properties that a real cat would have"

I would also point out, that you don't need a real cat to exist, in order to simulate one, that's the great things with simulated realities, you don't have to simulate things that are real.

Con had said "1. It has more explanatory value, because rather than having to posit what it is that these pseudo-locations, properties, and so forth are, it lets me just call these things locations, properties, and so forth.
2. There's no need to posit extra "stuff". I have no reason to add on the pseudo, if I get just as good an explanation"

Con themself posits extra "stuff" when they add to their perception of the cat. If Con does perceive a cat, then why add the extra stuff of "real" to it. If adding "Pseudo" is unwarranted, why isn't adding "real" unwarranted to our feline friend ?

I ask Con to justify this, if not then its a double standard and thus undermines the RWH as being more likely.

Con says "Something is only the best explanation if it can account for all of the relevant information,"

How does the real world Hypothesis explain why our world is the real world ? How does it explain why our world even exists ?

Seeing it doesn't account for all relevant information, doesn't this by your own standard show that the RWH is not the best explanation ?

Once again the RWH is undermined.

I look forward to Cons response.
meowmixxx

Con

First, I'm going to clarify something again, because my opponent seems to have difficulty understanding what "physically" is in a philosophically interesting sense. "Physically" does not have anything to do with the world being built out of physical constituents. Instead, when philosophers use physical, they mean 'in this world.' 'In this world' means in the context of the debate not only the "reality" we're in, but also the reality that would be simulating this one. This means that his arguments "I never said it had to be physical"

Next, a metaphysical possibility is a possible world where the contingent laws of nature are otherwise, such that things that are not possible in this "physical" or nomological world are possible. This is also known as logical possibility.

This should trace out the problem my opponent has had since the beginning, which he has not answered.

1. My opponent's first premise is that if it is not logically impossible, then it is logically (or metaphysically) possible.
Remember that logical possibilities do not interfere with the nomological world, there's no relation between the two.
2.This means that this premise tells us nothing about the physical (in the philosophically interesting way) world, because logical possibility doesn't connect to what is nomologically possible.
3. My opponent has to explain why it is nomologically possible, IE he needs to give a hypothesis as to why it conforms with the current world. A definition doesn't work, a positive argument that isn't about possibilities needs to work. Remember that his entire argument is based on his first premise, which doesn't matter because it has nothing to do with the nomological world.

Hence the two horns: He had to choose (but didn't, making this debate extremely untidy) whether he was advocating a metaphysical possibility or a physical possibility, and I outlined the problems for him in both. If he goes for physical possibility, his premise 1 has nothing to do with the argument, if he goes with metaphysical, then it can't explain how we could be in a simulated reality, only a that there could be some possible world. If my opponent doesn't understand this, I suggest that he read Lewis' account on metaphysically possibility worlds before continuing [1]. The two horns also contain sub arguments, which I will get to later.

Re-extend my attack on his conclusion C3, and how it doesn't obtain. This is the second time he'd dropped it, and it's twice over conceded for the entire round. This means that the rest of the arguments on Pro's case shouldn't matter, because he doesn't show how something more likely existing in a simulated reality leads to us being more likely to exist in a simulated reality; it's a complete non sequitur. THIS HAS BEEN DROPPED, DON'T LET HIM BRING IT UP IN HIS LAST SPEECH.

On Substitution:
"Then show how."
Well, I did, let me lay it out again:
Create some world where people believe that they are in a simulated reality, and someone argues that they are more likely to be in a real reality. Replace all of my opponent's "real reality" with "simulated" and visa versa in his argument structure. Replace Premise 2 with some ad hoc, as follows:
1. Inference to the best explanation, (which is a wonderful argument that went unaddressed and misunderstood, as I will show)
2. If we were simulated there would be more problems
3. Why would the world be so rich and colorful?
4. I can't imagine of anything creating a simulated reality
etc, for whatever reasons people would believe that they are in a real reality instead of a simulated reality. This shows that my opponent's argument is only justified by ad hoc, not by substantial reasoning.

On The Two Horns
My opponent makes a few arguments answering back the ground work I laid out, but I think this was out of misunderstanding. I have hopefully cleared that up at the top of this round.

Horn A
This is where I talk about physically in the non-interesting sense. The argument is that nothing can represent the information found per piece of matter other than a said piece of matter representing it. A proton cannot give complete data about anything other than a proton. Hence, the only way for this to be simulated, is for it to be the universe. My opponent drops all of my warrants and basically says "nuh uh", without looking at the reason for why I made the argument. Horn A still obtains.

Horn B
My opponent drops set theory and makes an argument that has no bearing on it. He failed to address validity of the argument. Saying "there would be more than one" doesn't answer the argument back. For every [universe where there is n], regardless of n, there are infinite other worlds where n = 0.

On IBE
First: My opponent totally dropped this, and I extended this argument. On face, you shouldn't accept any of his new arguments against it that weren't in Round 2. If he concedes the argument, he shouldn't be able to go back later and argue against it. I'm going to address his blips in any case.

I would also point out, that you don't need a real cat to exist, in order to simulate one, that's the great things with simulated realities, you don't have to simulate things that are real.
This is a complete failure to understand the argument. The argument on pseudo-ness is that you have to posit an extra "pseudo" in order to justify it not being the real thing. This fails parsimony.

Con themself posits extra "stuff" when they add to their perception of the cat. If Con does perceive a cat, then why add the extra stuff of "real" to it. If adding "Pseudo" is unwarranted, why isn't adding "real" unwarranted to our feline friend ?
This is again a total failure to understand the argument, and the metaphysics of 'simulated realities'. I don't have to "add" real, it's the basic assumption. When I perceive a cat, I perceive it as being real, it is in the nature of perception, as well as interacting with the world, in all the relevant ways, that we start from the ground point that this is a real reality. Arguments about simulated realities or alternate realities build up from there. [2] Again, to reiterate: ALL of our immediate perceptions about the world are formed with an intrinsic notion of reality, hence the RWH is our starting point. There's no double standard, and there is no "extra" real. Without 'real' it exists nowhere and notime [3].

How does the real world Hypothesis explain why our world is the real world ? How does it explain why our world even exists ?

Seeing it doesn't account for all relevant information, doesn't this by your own standard show that the RWH is not the best explanation ?

I'm not exactly sure what argument this is supposed to be making. The real world hypothesis is just the hypothesis that our world is the real world. It gets there from inference to the best explanation: This is laid out in round 1 and 2. It isn't designed to explain why our world exists, and that is entirely out of the scope of this debate. This debate is only about probability of this world being real or simulated. Hence, I'm not sure where the idea that it doesn't account for all the relevant information comes from; it does. Instead of saying that things are as they are because an evil demon is tricking us, it explains that things are as they are, because they're real. This accounts for all relevant information in the real world, including our mathematics and physics. It gives total completeness of information, something that was never challenged.

Inference to the Best Explanation has not, throughout this entire debate, been adequately challenged, and in fact was dropped by my opponent in round 2. It gives us good reason to not posit other worlds, as was shown in both round 1 and 2, if you'd feel like rereading it. The basic argument has not been challenged.

1. Lewis, David Counterfactuals, Harvard University Press 1973
2 Hales, Steven D. Metaphysics: Contemporary Readings. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing, 1999.
3. Kant, Immanuel Critique of Pure Reason
Debate Round No. 3
Illegalcombatant

Pro

I thank Con for their reply. I am running short on time some I will make it short and sweet.

Con wasn't able to prove that its impossible for a simulated world to exist, nor was Con able to prove that it was impossible for what we consider our "physical" world to be a simulated reality.

Previously I alluded to, that a perception doesn't necessarily correspond to reality in the Sun rising example. This undermines the basic assumption that what we perceive is in line with reality, as such it can't be a given that just because we perceive we live in a real world, that means we must live in a real world. Con didn't refute this, so Con can't just take it for granted that a "perceived" cat is a real cat.

Con did present a counter argument to my probability premise, but there counter argument was even less probable, so was ineffective.

Vote Pro.

I thank Con for participating in this debate.
meowmixxx

Con

I thank Pro for his response, however short it was. First, I'll extend all of my arguments from the the last round, then, I'll go over my opponent's last round and dissect it. Finally, I'll crystallize and give you really clear reasons for voting Con.

First off, the 2 most important thing for you to look at is:
1. He completely dropped, throughout all the rounds, that there is no link between the type of possibility that he's outlined, and the argument he's trying to make. Logical possibility never supervenes or interacts with a nomological possibility. His entire argument falls apart when he doesn't show how logical possibility shows anything relevant to us existing in a simulated reality. This was dropped through each round, though I gave him a choice to either go the physical possibility (first horn) or metaphysical [in his terms, logical] possibility (second horn) route.
On the first horn, he failed to understand and argue against my argument that a physical manifestation of the universe is the only epistemically open one to us. That means if you're inclined to go the physical route, which is how his first premise would obtain, you still vote con, because any physical simulation is the real one, meaning that if he goes the physical route, which is the only way to make his argument work, he negates himself.
On the second horn, he again failed to argue against two claims:
a: that the metaphysical world doesn't interact with this one
b: The set theory argument shows immediately that a real world is more likely.
In the second horn, which the first premise seems to be arguing, he fails to answer two pertinent objections

In either case, the first premise falls, and since his case is a syllogism, the rest of it falls apart.

2. Since round 1, he has failed to show the connection between C2 -> C3, which is something that I've been bringing up throughout the round. There's no reason to think that "something being more possible for X" translates to "it being more possible for us that X". Since his case also hinges around this argument, which went unrefuted, he failed his burden of proof.

Just based off of these two, if there's even a risk of the RWH fulfilling my BoP, you vote Con.
---
3. On the argument from substitution, my opponent asked me to show him. I did, and demonstrated that his entire case is built off of ad hoc justifications given in Premise (2).

4. Multiple things about Inference to the best explanation have been dropped. Extend across
a That he dropped the bulk of the argument, that being pseudo-status of propositions, until round 3.
b my answers to his attacks, which went unrefuted. This means that Inference to the Best Explanation holds, and that the Real World Hypothesis is the best provided in this round.
This means that I fulfill my BoP, and you should vote Con already.
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My opponent's last argument
Con wasn't able to prove that its impossible for a simulated world to exist, nor was Con able to prove that it was impossible for what we consider our "physical" world to be a simulated reality.

Well, I never had to. It was never my Burden of Proof to say that it was impossible, only that it was more probable that one exists over the other. Never in this debate until my opponent's final speech did my requiring to prove that it was impossible for it to exist come up. Disregard this as a new argument.

Previously I alluded to, that a perception doesn't necessarily correspond to reality in the Sun rising example. This undermines the basic assumption that what we perceive is in line with reality, as such it can't be a given that just because we perceive we live in a real world, that means we must live in a real world. Con didn't refute this, so Con can't just take it for granted that a "perceived" cat is a real cat.

(1) First, the Sun example was refuted in round 2. Furthermore, I claimed in round 2 that the perception was "loose talk", it's a word efficient way to talk about my argument. 3rd, this is in no way enough to argue against the entirety of inference to the best explanation, 4th, if you don't buy my second argument about loose talk, it doesn't even matter. The only counter argument to the way we perceive things is the sun rising example, which was answered back as not being able to provide full explanatory power, which was dropped. You have no reason to buy his perception argument in the slightest, and even if you do, give weight to the pseudo-proposition argument, which was completely dropped.

(2) Again, I absolutely refuted the sun example, and gave you reasons to think that the world that we're in is the real world, or at the very least, is the metaphysical starting point. This directly answers why we can, and do, make assumptions about the 'realness' of the cat being metaphysically prior. Both of these went unrefuted, and instantly refute the argument he is trying to make about the cat.

Both (1) and (2) here answer back this entire paragraph in two different ways, (1) for the perceived argument, and (2) for reality as being metaphysically prior.


Con did present a counter argument to my probability premise, but there counter argument was even less probable, so was ineffective.


This is vague. Is he talking about the probability premise (1), which has been the focus of much of this debate? The counter argument was that it was non-functional, which has been dropped by pro through out the round. If he's talking about the argument from substitution, he needs a warrant. If he's talking about IBE, he again needs a warrant for why it's less probable, even though I've clearly developed why it is, in all the relevant senses, more probable.
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The way out:
You've got a lot of ways out of this debate. Let's take a look at how the debate has manifested, in terms of BoP:
My opponent has two fundamental parts of his case challenged, Premise 1 and Conclusion 3, and the attacks against them went unrefuted. He failed on two counts to uphold his burden of proof.

The argument from substitution, if you don't buy it, is at the very least a way of contesting his BoP.

On my side, there is a weak attempt to refute IBE, which is mostly a response to an argument he dropped. The other response was promptly refuted, at which point he dropped it, only to bring it back in the last round.

Even if you're unwilling to vote off of IBE, it's easy to see which side's argument stands more complete, better defended, and and provides a better explanation. My opponent hasn't extend any of his arguments, and on balance, failed to justify his claims. At best, you could make the claim that we're gridlocked at IBE, but I don't think this is the case.

Finally, the argument on physical manifestation in horn A functions as offense, if you're inclined to go that route. If you want to make my opponent's argument work for him by making him have nomological possibility, you still vote con, because the simulated reality and real reality would be the same.

Thank you very much for your time. I thank Pro again for starting this debate, and I wish him good luck in this and future debates. That being said, for all the reasons stated above, I urge a vote for Con.

Debate Round No. 4
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by meowmixxx 5 years ago
meowmixxx
I think he was talking about the impossibility burden (?)
Posted by Illegalcombatant 5 years ago
Illegalcombatant
Reformed says " If there was a justified reason to need to prove this, assigning dual BoP would be acceptable, otherwise it is just poor form. This lost him the Conduct Vote."

Read the Burden of proof at the start, Con has to show that its more likely that we live in a "real" world than a "simulated" reality. Its hardly poor form to point out that part of Cons argument was an inbuilt assumption that the world we live in is real.......the very thing Con was making a case for.
Posted by Cliff.Stamp 5 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
IC, as a general note, you have some of the most interesting topics on DDO but often you seem to run out of steam in the debate and the debates seem to be a little long. It might work better if the debates were three rounds as this one seemed to cycle after the opening.
Posted by Dimmitri.C 5 years ago
Dimmitri.C
Sorry, I meant this is an interesting debate*.
Posted by Dimmitri.C 5 years ago
Dimmitri.C
This debate will be interesting!
Posted by meowmixxx 5 years ago
meowmixxx
Forgot to finish my sentence:
This means that his arguments "I never said it had to be physical" don't amount to anything*

If you don't want to take this into account for debate, that's fine.

Also, when I use Lewis, I don't support his actual views about possible worlds, just how he lays them out.
Posted by meowmixxx 5 years ago
meowmixxx
I probably should have said nomological possibility because that's clearer -_-.
Posted by Cliff.Stamp 5 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
"Once again, it is not a necessary pre condition that the simulated reality be physical."

Now that is interesting. IC you add a unique flavor to DDO.
Posted by tvellalott 5 years ago
tvellalott
Good luck. Love the simulated reality theory. I hope that Giledersomething guy doesn't come in and argue that God makes realities therefore your argument is invalid.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by ReformedArsenal 5 years ago
ReformedArsenal
IllegalcombatantmeowmixxxTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con dismantled the assertions easily. That won him arguments. Pro shifted BoP, which is a low move. There is no justified reason why Con should have to prove an accepted truth (that we live in an actual reality). If there was a justified reason to need to prove this, assigning dual BoP would be acceptable, otherwise it is just poor form. This lost him the Conduct Vote.
Vote Placed by Cliff.Stamp 5 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
IllegalcombatantmeowmixxxTied
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Reasons for voting decision: "1. My opponent's first premise is that if it is not logically impossible, then it is logically (or metaphysically) possible. Remember that logical possibilities do not interfere with the nomological world, there's no relation between the two. 2.This means that this premise tells us nothing about the physical (in the philosophically interesting way) world, because logical possibility doesn't connect to what is nomologically possible." - this is the crux, well done Con. 2 pt