# A Bayesian Approach to the Simulation Argument

^{1}

^{2}

## Abstract

**:**

## 1. Introduction

- “The fraction of human-level civilizations that reach a posthuman stage (that is, one capable of running high-fidelity ancestor simulations) is very close to zero”;
- “The fraction of posthuman civilizations that are interested in running simulations of their evolutionary history, or variations thereof, is very close to zero”;
- “The fraction of all people with our kind of experiences that are living in a simulation is very close to one”.

## 2. A Statistical Analysis of the Simulation Argument

#### 2.1. Dreams within Dreams

#### 2.2. Simulation Counting

#### 2.3. Counting Nulliparous Simulations

#### 2.4. The Physical Hypothesis

#### 2.5. Bayes Factors Conditioned Upon Nulliparity

#### 2.6. Understanding the Transition from Near-Certainty to Ambiguity

#### 2.6.1. Neglecting our Nulliparity

#### 2.6.2. Negating Bayesian Model Comparison

#### 2.7. Bayesian Model Averaging with the “Cogito, Ergo Sum” Conditional

#### 2.8. Bayesian Model Averaging with the Nulliparous Conditional

#### 2.9. What If We Were Parous?

## 3. Discussion

## Funding

## Acknowledgments

## Conflicts of Interest

## References

- Bostrom, N. Are We Living in a Computer Simulation? Philos. Q.
**2003**, 53, 243–255. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] - Solon, O. Is Our World a Simulation? Why Some Scientists Say it’s More Likely than Not. Available online: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/oct/11/simulated-world-elon-musk-the-matrix (accessed on 11 October 2016).
- Alexander, D. We Are Probably Living in a Simulation, Here’s What You Need to Know About Simulation Theory. Available online: www.interestingengineering.com (accessed on 20 April 2020).
- Wall, M. We’re Probably Living in a Simulation, Elon Musk Says. Available online: www.space.com (accessed on 7 September 2018).
- Beane, S.R.; Davoudi, Z.; Savage, M.J. Constraints on the universe as a numerical simulation. Eur. Phys. J. A
**2014**, 50, 148–161. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef][Green Version] - Mithcell, J.B.O. We are probably not Sims. Sci. Christian Belief
**2020**, 32, 45–62. [Google Scholar] - Ringel, Z.; Kovrizhin, D. Quantized gravitational responses, the sign problem, and quantum complexity. Sci. Adv.
**2017**, 3, e1701758. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed][Green Version] - Weatherson, B. Are You a Sim? Philos. Q.
**2003**, 53, 425–431. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] - Russell, B. The Analysis of Mind; Allen & Unwin: London, UK, 1921. [Google Scholar]
- Poundstone, W. The Doomsday Calculation: How an Equation that Predicts the Future is Transforming Everything We Know about Life and the Universe; Little, Brown Spark: New York, NY, USA, 2019. [Google Scholar]
- Richmond, A.M. Why Doomsday Arguments are Better than Simulation Arguments. Ratio
**2016**, 30, 221–238. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] - Bostrom, N. The doomsday argument is alive and kicking. Mind
**1999**, 108, 539–551. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] - Carter, B. The anthropic principle and its implications for biological evolution. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc.
**1983**, A310, 347–363. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] - Gott, R. Implications of the Copernican principle for our future prospects. Nature
**1993**, 363, 315–319. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] - Korb, K.B.; Oliver, J.J. A refutation of the doomsday argument. Mind
**1998**, 107, 403–410. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] - Lampton, M. Doomsday: A Response to Simpson’s Second Question. Available online: https://arxiv.org/abs/2003.00132 (accessed on 29 February 2020).
- Simpson, F. Apocalypse Now? Reviving the Doomsday Argument. Available online: https://arxiv.org/abs/1611.03072 (accessed on 1 November 2016).
- Carroll, S. Maybe We Do Not Live in a Simulation: The Resolution Conundrum. Available online: www.preposterousuniverse.com (accessed on 22 August 2016).

1. | Although deception may not even necessary, since the sims have no experience/knowledge of base reality, they cannot even judge plainly unnatural phenomenon as unphysical. |

2. | This can be thought of as an example of applying Gott’s Copernican Principle [14], if most realities are X, then we most likely live in an X-type reality. |

**Figure 1.**An illustrative depiction of a hypothetical hierarchical framework of simulated realities embedded spawned from a base civilization.

© 2020 by the author. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

## Share and Cite

**MDPI and ACS Style**

Kipping, D. A Bayesian Approach to the Simulation Argument. *Universe* **2020**, *6*, 109.
https://doi.org/10.3390/universe6080109

**AMA Style**

Kipping D. A Bayesian Approach to the Simulation Argument. *Universe*. 2020; 6(8):109.
https://doi.org/10.3390/universe6080109

**Chicago/Turabian Style**

Kipping, David. 2020. "A Bayesian Approach to the Simulation Argument" *Universe* 6, no. 8: 109.
https://doi.org/10.3390/universe6080109