Living In A Simulation Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Living In A Simulation. Here they are! All 134 of them:

We live in a world where there is more and more information, and less and less meaning.
Jean Baudrillard (Simulacra and Simulation)
His eyes search the crowd until they find my face. My heartbeat lives in my throat; lives in my cheeks. "I still don't understand," he says softly, "how she knew that it would work.
Veronica Roth (Insurgent (Divergent, #2))
You've always lived a life of pretense, not a real life-- a simulated existence, not a genuine existence. Everything about you, everything you are, has always been pretense, never genuine, never real.
Thomas Bernhard (Woodcutters)
To write is to forget. Literature is the most agreeable way of ignoring life. Music soothes, the visual arts exhilarates, the performing arts (such as acting and dance) entertain. Literature, however, retreats from life by turning in into slumber. The other arts make no such retreat— some because they use visible and hence vital formulas, others because they live from human life itself. This isn't the case with literature. Literature simulates life. A novel is a story of what never was, a play is a novel without narration. A poem is the expression of ideas or feelings a language no one uses, because no one talks in verse.
Fernando Pessoa (The Book of Disquiet)
Seemingly innocuous language like 'Oh, I'm flexible' or 'What do you want to do tonight?' has a dark computational underbelly that should make you think twice. It has the veneer of kindness about it, but it does two deeply alarming things. First, it passes the cognitive buck: 'Here's a problem, you handle it.' Second, by not stating your preferences, it invites the others to simulate or imagine them. And as we have seen, the simulation of the minds of others is one of the biggest computational challenges a mind (or machine) can ever face.
Brian Christian (Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions)
There are no arguments. Can anyone who has reached the limit bother with arguments, causes, effects, moral considerations, and so forth? Of course not. For such a person there are only unmotivated motives for living. On the heights of despair, the passion for the absurd is the only thing that can still throw a demonic light on chaos. When all the current reasons—moral, esthetic, religious, social, and so on—no longer guide one's life, how can one sustain life without succumbing to nothingness? Only by a connection with the absurd, by love of absolute uselessness, loving something which does not have substance but which simulates an illusion of life. I live because the mountains do not laugh and the worms do not sing.
Emil M. Cioran (On the Heights of Despair)
We will live in this world, which for us has all the disquieting strangeness of the desert and of the simulacrum, with all the veracity of living phantoms, of wandering and simulating animals that capital, that the death of capital has made of us—because the desert of cities is equal to the desert of sand—the jungle of signs is equal to that of the forests—the vertigo of simulacra is equal to that of nature—only the vertiginous seduction of a dying system remains, in which work buries work, in which value buries value—leaving a virgin, sacred space without pathways, continuous as Bataille wished it, where only the wind lifts the sand, where only the wind watches over the sand.
Jean Baudrillard (Simulacra and Simulation)
When Thoreau considered "where I live and what I live for," he tied together location and values. Where we live doesn't just change how we live; it informs who we become. Most recently, technology promises us lives on the screen. What values, Thoreau would ask, follow from this new location? Immersed in simulation, where do we live, and what do we live for?
Sherry Turkle (Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other)
I love you. For real. No simulated affection or love ever again, because with you, I don’t need to simulate. You dragged that dead part of me out of the past and revived it. I didn’t die fifteen years ago, but I didn’t live either … until you.
Cora Reilly (Twisted Emotions (The Camorra Chronicles, #2))
Today, your cell phone has more computer power than all of NASA back in 1969, when it placed two astronauts on the moon. Video games, which consume enormous amounts of computer power to simulate 3-D situations, use more computer power than mainframe computers of the previous decade. The Sony PlayStation of today, which costs $300, has the power of a military supercomputer of 1997, which cost millions of dollars.
Michio Kaku (Physics Of The Future: How Science Will Shape Human Destiny And Our Daily Lives By The Year 2100)
In that sense, the creek is a reminder that we do not live in a simulation—a streamlined world of products, results, experiences, reviews—but rather on a giant rock whose other life-forms operate according to an ancient, oozing, almost chthonic logic. Snaking through the midst of the banal everyday is a deep weirdness, a world of flowerings, decompositions, and seepages, of a million crawling things, of spores and lacy fungal filaments, of minerals reacting and things being eaten away—all just on the other side of the chain-link fence.
Jenny Odell (How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy)
Dauntless traitors crowded the hallway; the Erudite crowd the execution room, but there, they have made a path for me already. Silently they study me as I walk to the metal table in the center of the room. Jeanine stands a few steps away. The scratches on her face show through hastily applied makeup. She doesn’t look at me. Four cameras dangle from the ceiling, one at each corner of the table. I sit down first, wipe my hands off on my pants, and then lie down. The table is cold. Frigid, seeping into my skin, into my bones. Appropriate, perhaps, because that is what will happen to my body when all the life leaves it; it will become cold and heavy, heavier than I have ever been. As for the rest of me, I am not sure. Some people believe that I will go nowhere, and maybe they’re right, but maybe they’re not. Such speculations are no longer useful to me anyway. Peter slips an electrode beneath the collar of my shirt and presses it to my chest, right over my heart. He then attaches a wire to the electrode and switches on the heart monitor. I hear my heartbeat, fast and strong. Soon, where that steady rhythm was, there will be nothing. And then rising from within me is a single thought: I don’t want to die. All those times Tobias scolded me for risking my life, I never took him seriously. I believed that I wanted to be with my parents and for all of this to be over. I was sure I wanted to emulate their self-sacrifice. But no. No, no. Burning and boiling inside me is the desire to live. I don’t want to die I don’t want to die I don’t want to! Jeanine steps forward with a syringe full of purple serum. Her glasses reflect the fluorescent light above us, so I can barely see her eyes. Every part of my body chants it in unison. Live, live, live. I thought that in order to give my life in exchange for Will’s, in exchange for my parents’, that I needed to die, but I was wrong; I need to live my life in the light of their deaths. I need to live. Jeanine holds my head steady with one hand and inserts the needle into my neck with the other. I’m not done! I shout in my head, and not at Jeanine. I am not done here! She presses the plunger down. Peter leans forward and looks into my eyes. “The serum will go into effect in one minute,” he says. “Be brave, Tris.” The words startle me, because that is exactly what Tobias said when he put me under my first simulation. My heart begins to race. Why would Peter tell me to be brave? Why would he offer any kind words at all? All the muscles in my body relax at once. A heavy, liquid feeling fills my limbs. If this is death, it isn’t so bad. My eyes stay open, but my head drops to the side. I try to close my eyes, but I can’t—I can’t move. Then the heart monitor stops beeping.
Veronica Roth (Insurgent (Divergent, #2))
Something as superfluous as "play" is also an essential feature of our consciousness. If you ask children why they like to play, they will say, "Because it's fun." But that invites the next question: What is fun? Actually, when children play, they are often trying to reenact complex human interactions in simplified form. Human society is extremely sophisticated, much too involved for the developing brains of young children, so children run simplified simulations of adult society, playing games such as doctor, cops and robber, and school. Each game is a model that allows children to experiment with a small segment of adult behavior and then run simulations into the future. (Similarly, when adults engage in play, such as a game of poker, the brain constantly creates a model of what cards the various players possess, and then projects that model into the future, using previous data about people's personality, ability to bluff, etc. The key to games like chess, cards, and gambling is the ability to simulate the future. Animals, which live largely in the present, are not as good at games as humans are, especially if they involve planning. Infant mammals do engage in a form of play, but this is more for exercise, testing one another, practicing future battles, and establishing the coming social pecking order rather than simulating the future.)
Michio Kaku (The Future of the Mind: The Scientific Quest to Understand, Enhance, and Empower the Mind)
But what becomes of the divinity when it reveals itself in icons, when it is simply incarnated in images as a visible theology? Or does it volatilize itself in the simulacra that, alone, deploy their power and pomp of fascination - the visible machinery of icons substituted for the pure and intelligible Idea of God? This is precisely what was feared by Iconoclasts, whose millennial quarrel is still with us today. This is precisely because they predicted this omnipotence of simulacra, the faculty simulacra have of effacing God from the conscience of man, and the destructive, annihilating truth that they allow to appear - that deep down God never existed, even God himself was never anything but his own simulacra - from this came their urge to destroy the images. If they could have believed that these images only obfuscated or masked the Platonic Idea of God, there would have been no reason to destroy them. One can live with the idea of distorted truth. But their metaphysical despair came from the idea that the image didn't conceal anything at all.
Jean Baudrillard (Simulacra and Simulation)
During World War II, when combat rations were tinned, meat hashes were a common entrée because they worked well with the filling machines. “But the men wanted something they could chew, something into which they could ‘sink their teeth,’” wrote food scientist Samuel Lepkovsky in a 1964 paper making the case against a liquid diet for the Gemini astronauts. He summed up the soldiers’ take on potted meat: “We could undoubtedly survive on these rations a lot longer than we’d care to live.” (NASA went ahead and tested an all-milkshake meal plan on groups of college students living in a simulated space capsule at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in 1964. A significant portion of it ended up beneath the floorboards.)
Mary Roach (Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal)
If you’re an adrenaline junkie, I understand why you’d find that exciting. But I’m not, and I don’t. To me, the only good reason to take a risk is that there’s a decent possibility of a reward that outweighs the hazard. Exploring the edge of the universe and pushing the boundaries of human knowledge and capability strike me as pretty significant rewards, so I accept the risks of being an astronaut, but with an abundance of caution: I want to understand them, manage them and reduce them as much as possible. It’s almost comical that astronauts are stereotyped as daredevils and cowboys. As a rule, we’re highly methodical and detail-oriented. Our passion isn’t for thrills but for the grindstone, and pressing our noses to it. We have to: we’re responsible for equipment that has cost taxpayers many millions of dollars, and the best insurance policy we have on our lives is our own dedication to training. Studying, simulating, practicing until responses become automatic—astronauts don’t do all this only to fulfill NASA’s requirements. Training is something we do to reduce the odds that we’ll die.
Chris Hadfield (An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth)
Compared with that of a great artist, the friendliness of a great nobleman, however charming it may be, seems like play-acting, like simulation. Saint-Loup sought to please; Elstir loved to give, to give himself. Everything he possessed, ideas, works, and the rest which he counted for far less, he would have given gladly to anyone who understood him. But, for lack of congenial company, he lived in an unsociable isolation which fashionable people call pose and ill-breeding, the authorities a recalcitrant spirit, his neighbours madness, his family selfishness and pride.
Marcel Proust (In the Shadow of Young Girls in Flower)
At no time in the history of man has the world been so full of pain and anguish. Here and there, however, we meet with individuals who are untouched, unsullied, by the common grief. We say of them that they have died to the world. They live in the moment, fully, and the radiance which emanates from them is a perpetual song of joy […] like the clown, we go through the motions, forever simulating, forever postponing the grand event- we die struggling to get born. We never were, never are. We are always in the process of becoming. Forever outside
Henry Miller (The Smile at the Foot of the Ladder)
In my eyes, PE was a twice-weekly period of anarchy during which the school’s most aggressive pupils were formally permitted to dominate and torment those they considered physically inferior. Perhaps if the whole thing had been pitched as an exercise in interactive drama intended to simulate how it might feel to live in a fascist state run by thick schoolboys – an episodic, improvised adaptation of Lord of the Flies in uniform sportswear – I’d have appreciated it more.
Charlie Brooker (I Can Make You Hate)
It might not be immediately obvious to some readers why the ability to perform 10^85 computational operations is a big deal. So it's useful to put it in context. [I]t may take about 10^31-10^44 operations to simulate all neuronal operations that have occurred in the history of life on Earth. Alternatively, let us suppose that the computers are used to run human whole brain emulations that live rich and happy lives while interacting with one another in virtual environments. A typical estimate of the computational requirements for running one emulation is 10^18 operations per second. To run an emulation for 100 subjective years would then require some 10^27 operations. This would be mean that at least 10^58 human lives could be created in emulation even with quite conservative assumptions about the efficiency of computronium. In other words, assuming that the observable universe is void of extraterrestrial civilizations, then what hangs in the balance is at least 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 human lives. If we represent all the happiness experienced during one entire such life with a single teardrop of joy, then the happiness of these souls could fill and refill the Earth's oceans every second, and keep doing so for a hundred billion billion millennia. It is really important that we make sure these truly are tears of joy.
Nick Bostrom (Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies)
Unlike real tissue, human tissue simulant doesn’t snap back: The cavity remains, allowing ballistics types to judge, and preserve a record of, a bullet’s performance. Plus, you don’t need to autopsy a block of human tissue simulant; because it’s clear, you just walk up to it after you’ve shot it and take a look at the damage. Following which, you can take it home, eat it, and enjoy stronger, healthier nails in thirty days.
Mary Roach (Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers)
I believe that in our culture of simulation, the notion of authenticity is for us what sex was for the Victorians—threat and obsession, taboo and fascination. I have lived with this idea for many years; yet, at the museum, I found the children’s position strangely unsettling. For them, in this context, aliveness seemed to have no intrinsic value. Rather, it is useful only if needed for a specific purpose. Darwin’s endless forms so beautiful were no longer sufficient unto themselves.
Sherry Turkle (Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other)
When The Matrix debuted in 1999, it was a huge box-office success. It was also well received by critics, most of whom focused on one of two qualities—the technological (it mainstreamed the digital technique of three-dimensional “bullet time,” where the on-screen action would freeze while the camera continued to revolve around the participants) or the philosophical (it served as a trippy entry point for the notion that we already live in a simulated world, directly quoting philosopher Jean Baudrillard’s 1981 reality-rejecting book Simulacra and Simulation). If you talk about The Matrix right now, these are still the two things you likely discuss. But what will still be interesting about this film once the technology becomes ancient and the philosophy becomes standard? I suspect it might be this: The Matrix was written and directed by “the Wachowski siblings.” In 1999, this designation meant two brothers; as I write today, it means two sisters. In the years following the release of The Matrix, the older Wachowski (Larry, now Lana) completed her transition from male to female. The younger Wachowski (Andy, now Lilly) publicly announced her transition in the spring of 2016. These events occurred during a period when the social view of transgender issues radically evolved, more rapidly than any other component of modern society. In 1999, it was almost impossible to find any example of a trans person within any realm of popular culture; by 2014, a TV series devoted exclusively to the notion won the Golden Globe for Best Television Series. In the fifteen-year window from 1999 to 2014, no aspect of interpersonal civilization changed more, to the point where Caitlyn (formerly Bruce) Jenner attracted more Twitter followers than the president (and the importance of this shift will amplify as the decades pass—soon, the notion of a transgender US president will not seem remotely implausible). So think how this might alter the memory of The Matrix: In some protracted reality, film historians will reinvestigate an extremely commercial action movie made by people who (unbeknownst to the audience) would eventually transition from male to female. Suddenly, the symbolic meaning of a universe with two worlds—one false and constructed, the other genuine and hidden—takes on an entirely new meaning. The idea of a character choosing between swallowing a blue pill that allows him to remain a false placeholder and a red pill that forces him to confront who he truly is becomes a much different metaphor. Considered from this speculative vantage point, The Matrix may seem like a breakthrough of a far different kind. It would feel more reflective than entertaining, which is precisely why certain things get remembered while certain others get lost.
Chuck Klosterman (But What If We're Wrong?: Thinking About the Present As If It Were the Past)
it could be accurately stated that one purpose of our lives, when taken in total, is to generate possible solutions to obstacles and problems, as defined by the entity or advanced civilization on the next level up running the simulation.
Mark J. Solomon (On Computer Simulated Universes)
And what of our own universe? The newest conjecture is that all that we experience—from the tiniest vibrating string of energy to that massive galaxy spinning around a maelstrom of reality-ripping black holes—may be nothing more than a hologram, a three-dimensional illusion that, in fact, we may all be living in a created simulation. Could that be possible? Could Plato have been right all along: that we are blind to the true reality around us, that all we know is nothing more than the flickering shadow on a cave wall?
James Rollins (The Eye of God (Sigma Force, #9))
Men are ‘ungrateful, fickle, simulators and deceivers, avoiders of danger, and greedy for gain. While you work for their benefit, they are completely yours, offering you their blood, their property, their lives, and their sons, as I said above, when the need is far away. But when it draws nearer to you, they turn away’ (Ch. XVII). It is therefore better to be feared than to be loved, if one cannot be both, because ‘men are less hesitant about injuring someone who makes himself loved than one who makes himself feared’.
Niccolò Machiavelli (The Prince)
When our decision-making is nurtured by corporate algorithm, when so many of our experiences are their simulations of experience, when we’ve outsourced our memories to be stored and filed away, by them. When our every moment is sampled, deconstructed, and built back into Trojans—advertising, architecture, news reports—that reformat our lives. How can we exist, then, when we’re someone else’s dream? They create these cities, Jack, and cities are huge external memory devices. But the memories are not ours, always those of others.
T.R. Napper (Neon Leviathan)
A beam of pink light blinded him; he felt dreadful pain in his head, and clapped his hands to his eyes. I am blind! he realized. With the pain and the pink light came understanding, an acute knowledge; he knew that Zina was not a human woman, and he knew, further, that the boy Manny was not a human boy. This was not a real world he was in; he understood that because the beam of pink light had told him that. This world is a simulation, and something living and intelligent and sympathetic wanted him to know. Something cares about me and it has penetrated this world to warn me, he realized, and it is camouflaged as this world so that the master of this world, the lord of this unreal realm, will not know; not know it is here and not know it has told me. This is a terrible secret to know, he thought. I could be killed for knowing this.
Philip K. Dick (The Divine Invasion)
I had this idea we would have ordered some good champagne, launched toast after toast to our humanity, which after all had created everything: the opportunities for the bug, the bug itself, and its solution. I think now it might have changed us, softened our failures, made us feel we belonged to—had a true stake in—those lives full of code we had separately stumbled into. I like to think it would have reassured him, saved him: To know that at the heart of the problem was the ancient mystery of time. To discover that between the blinks of the machine’s shuttered eye—going on without pause or cease; simulated, imagined, but still not caught—was life.
Ellen Ullman (The Bug)
Love allows freedom for the beloved, even the freedom to leave. It surely grants the freedom to make mistakes, or to make decisions that bring out challenging situations. Challenges are part of this life simulation game after all. Love doesn't judge the person by their choices and deeds. Love says: "I trust and respect that you will eventually find your path on your own, whatever it may be. You don't need to agree with me—I love your 'yes' and I love your 'no.' I may get upset at you, but I still love you. You use your free will to do what you believe to be right. You live your life, with your choices and their results. It's just an additional honor and fun to have you in my life while we both enjoy it.
Akemi G. (Why We Are Born: Remembering Our Purpose through the Akashic Records)
Perhaps we are all living inside a giant computer simulation, Matrix-style. That would contradict all our national, religious and ideological stories. But our mental experiences would still be real. If it turns out that human history is an elaborate simulation run on a super-computer by rat scientists from the planet Zircon, that would be rather embarrassing for Karl Marx and the Islamic State. But these rat scientists would still have to answer for the Armenian genocide and for Auschwitz. How did they get that one past the Zircon University’s ethics committee? Even if the gas chambers were just electric signals in silicon chips, the experiences of pain, fear and despair were not one iota less excruciating for that. Pain is pain, fear is fear, and love is love – even in the matrix. It doesn’t matter if the fear you feel is inspired by a collection of atoms in the outside world or by electrical signals manipulated by a computer. The fear is still real. So if you want to explore the reality of your mind, you can do that inside the matrix as well as outside it.
Yuval Noah Harari (21 Lessons for the 21st Century)
You no longer watch TV, it is TV that watches you (live),” or again: “You are no longer listening to Don’t Panic, it is Don’t Panic that is listening to you”—a switch from the panoptic mechanism of surveillance (Discipline and Punish [Surveiller et punir]) to a system of deterrence, in which the distinction between the passive and the active is abolished. There is no longer any imperative of submission to the model, or to the gaze “YOU are the model!” “YOU are the majority!” Such is the watershed of a hyperreal sociality, in which the real is confused with the model, as in the statistical operation, or with the medium. …Such is the last stage of the social relation, ours, which is no longer one of persuasion (the classical age of propaganda, of ideology, of publicity, etc.) but one of deterrence: “YOU are information, you are the social, you are the event, you are involved, you have the word, etc.” An about-face through which it becomes impossible to locate one instance of the model, of power, of the gaze, of the medium itself, because you are always already on the other side.
Jean Baudrillard (Simulacra and Simulation)
He [the actor] abundantly illustrates every month or every day that so suggestive truth that there is no frontier between what a man wants to be and what he is. Always concerned with better representing, he demonstrates to what a degree appearing creates being. For that is his art - to simulate absolutely, to project himself as deeply as possible into lives that are not his own. At the end of his effort his vocation becomes clear: to apply himself wholeheartedly to being nothing or to being several.
Albert Camus (The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays)
Whenever I ask my Russian bosses, the older TV producers and media types who run the system, what it was like growing up in the late Soviet Union, whether they believed in the Communist ideology that surrounded them, they always laugh at me. “Don’t be silly,” most answer. “But you sang the songs? Were good members of the Komsomol?” “Of course we did, and we felt good when we sang them. And then straight after we would listen to ‘Deep Purple’ and the BBC.” “So you were dissidents? You believed in finishing the USSR?” “No. It’s not like that. You just speak several languages at the same time, all the time. There’s like several ‘you’s.” Seen from this perspective, the great drama of Russia is not the “transition” between communism and capitalism, between one fervently held set of beliefs and another, but that during the final decades of the USSR no one believed in communism and yet carried on living as if they did, and now they can only create a society of simulations. For this remains the common, everyday psychology: the Ostankino producers who make news worshiping the President in the day and then switch on an opposition radio as soon as they get off work; the political technologists who morph from role to role with liquid ease—a nationalist autocrat one moment and a liberal aesthete the next; the “orthodox” oligarchs who sing hymns to Russian religious conservatism—and keep their money and families in London. All cultures have differences between “public” and “private” selves, but in Russia the contradiction can be quite extreme.
Peter Pomerantsev (Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible: The Surreal Heart of the New Russia)
Life is not only about going after name, money, success, fame and fortune and getting all of them. It is also about how you live with humility, dignity, and discipline when all of what you attained and acquired are taken away from you. Resilience and equanimity cannot be developed and deployed in simulated environments. They are always discovered within you, when you stand in the middle of the battle of Life, in the chaos, in the eye of the storm. It is by facing Life and learning to be happy, to be useful, despite your circumstances, that you become stronger.
AVIS Viswanathan
Is there some amazing rational thing you do when your mind's running in all different directions?" she managed. "My own approach is usually to identify the different desires, give them names, conceive of them as separate individuals, and let them argue it out inside my head. So far the main persistent ones are my Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, Gryffindor, and Slytherin sides, my Inner Critic, and my simulated copies of you, Neville, Draco, Professor McGonagall, Professor Flitwick, Professor Quirrell, Dad, Mum, Richard Feynman, and Douglas Hofstadter." Hermione considered trying this before her Common Sense warned that it might be a dangerous sort of thing to pretend. "There's a copy of me inside your head?" "Of course there is!" Harry said. The boy suddenly looked a bit more vulnerable. "You mean there isn't a copy of me living in your head?" There was, she realized; and not only that, it talked in Harry's exact voice. "It's rather unnerving now that I think about it," said Hermione. "I do have a copy of you living in my head. It's talking to me right now using your voice, arguing how this is perfectly normal." "Good," Harry said seriously. "I mean, I don't see how people could be friends without that.
Eliezer Yudkowsky
One can live with the idea of distorted truth. But their metaphysical despair came from the idea that the image didn't conceal anything at all, and that these images were in essence not images, such as an original model would have made them, but perfect simulacra, forever radiant with their own fascination. Thus this death of the divine referential must be exorcised at all costs. One can see that the iconoclasts, whom one accuses of disdaining and negating images, were those who accorded them their true value, in contrast to the iconolaters who only saw reflections in them and were content to venerate a filigree God.
Jean Baudrillard (Simulacra and Simulation)
LOG ENTRY: SOL 14 I got my undergrad degree at the University of Chicago. Half the people who studied botany were hippies who thought they could return to some natural world system. Somehow feeding seven billion people through pure gathering. They spent most of their time working out better ways to grow pot. I didn’t like them. I’ve always been in it for the science, not for any New World Order bullshit. When they made compost heaps and tried to conserve every little ounce of living matter, I laughed at them. “Look at the silly hippies! Look at their pathetic attempts to simulate a complex global ecosystem in their backyard.
Andy Weir (The Martian)
Today’s young people have grown up with robot pets and on the network in a fully tethered life. In their views of robots, they are pioneers, the first generation that does not necessarily take simulation to be second best. As for online life, they see its power—they are, after all risking their lives to check their messages—but they also view it as one might the weather: to be taken for granted, enjoyed, and sometimes endured. They’ve gotten used to this weather but there are signs of weather fatigue. There are so many performances; it takes energy to keep things up; and it takes time, a lot of time. “Sometimes you don’t have time for your friends except if they’re online,” is a common complaint.
Sherry Turkle (Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other)
Did you know the average age of a gamer is thirty-two? Now, I don't see anything inherently wrong with diversion and games, but that is certainly telling about our culture, isn't it? Instead of raising families or creating culture, we are sitting around in our living rooms with our eyes glued to the television, simulating life. We are escapists, cowards, and thieves. We hide, occasionally stealing crumbs from the table of those living the good life. We are avoiding the truth that screams at us from the stillness: 'There is more. You are more than this.' So we anesthetize the truth with busyness. Maybe if we just do more, this feeling of emptiness will go away. And we won't actually have to do any real work.
Jeff Goins (Wrecked: When a Broken World Slams into your Comfortable Life)
Walking is nonverbal communication. Like I can tell if [she's] mad by her footsteps. Walking isn't as overt as other signals, like the way someone smells, their voice, their laugh, their facial expressions. Steps can be frivolous, but they're often distinct from person to person. Familiarity grows over time, slowly, inadvertently. I never tried to get to know her walk deliberately. This stuff happens unwittingly... Living with someone can't be simulated or rehearsed. It has to be experienced, in real time. There is no substitute for shared involvement, for creating actual memories. Like, I know how [she] blows her nose. I've never thought about it until now, but I do. I know the cadence, the rhythm. She does it in the same tempo every time. These observations - her footsteps, how she blows her nose - they're like little secrets.
Iain Reid (Foe)
The main thing is not to be deceived, that is, to lie and and simulate better than the others. All Stendhal's great novels revolve around the problem of hypocrisy, around the secret of how to deal with men and how to rule the world; they are all in the nature of text-book of political realism and courses of instruction in political amoralism. In his critique of Stendhal, Balzac already remarks that Chartreuse de Parme is a new Principe, which Machiavelli himself, if he had lived as an emigre in the Italy of nineteenth century, would not have been able to write any differently. Julien Sorel's Machiavellian motto, "Qui veut les fins veut les moyens," here acquires its classical formulation, as used repeatedly by Balzac himself, namely that one must accept the rules of the world's game, if one wants to count in the world and to take part in the play.
Arnold Hauser (The Social History of Art: Volume 4: Naturalism, Impressionism, The Film Age)
In this section I have tried to demonstrate that Darwinian thinking does live up to its billing as universal acid: it turns the whole traditional world upside down, challenging the top-down image of designs flowing from that genius of geniuses, the Intelligent Designer, and replacing it with the bubble-up image of mindless, motiveless cyclical processes churning out ever-more robust combinations until they start replicating on their own, speeding up the design process by reusing all the best bits over and over. Some of these earliest offspring eventually join forces (one major crane, symbiosis), which leads to multicellularity (another major crane), which leads to the more effective exploration vehicles made possible by sexual reproduction (another major crane), which eventually leads in one species to language and cultural evolution (cranes again), which provide the medium for literature and science and engineering, the latest cranes to emerge, which in turn permits us to “go meta” in a way no other life form can do, reflecting in many ways on who and what we are and how we got here, modeling these processes in plays and novels, theories and computer simulations, and ever-more thinking tools to add to our impressive toolbox. This perspective is so widely unifying and at the same time so generous with detailed insights that one might say it’s a power tool, all on its own. Those who are still strangely repelled by Darwinian thinking must consider the likelihood that if they try to go it alone with only the hand tools of tradition, they will find themselves laboring far from the cutting edge of research on important phenomena as diverse as epidemics and epistemology, biofuels and brain architecture, molecular genetics, music, and morality.
Daniel C. Dennett (Intuition Pumps And Other Tools for Thinking)
My uncle arranged for us to have a day together at a simulated shooting range near where he lived on the West Coast. The entire staff turned out to make sure we had fun-and to catch a glimpse of the newly famous hero. I went through the range with him, and the results were not quite what I expected. I did well, but… To give you some background: The range featured tactical situations where you did more than stand behind a bench and shoot at a paper target and a bale of hay. Videos supplied an immersive experience; it was a little like being part of a video game, except that you moved around and had a full-sized weapon as opposed to a game controller. The results were recorded, and we reviewed them later on. Chris’s shots were all head and chest. Mine were all in the crotch. “Do we need to talk?” asked Chris. I swear, there was no hostility. I was just aiming low, expecting the recoil to bring the shot up. Really.
Taya Kyle (American Wife: Love, War, Faith, and Renewal)
If biological algorithms are the important part of what makes us who we are, rather than the physical stuff, then it’s a possibility that we will someday be able to copy our brains, upload them, and live forever in silica. But there’s an important question here: is it really you? Not exactly. The uploaded copy has all your memories and believes it was you, just there, standing outside the computer, in your body. Here’s the strange part: if you die and we turn on the simulation one second later, it would be a transfer. It would be no different to beaming up in Star Trek, when a person is disintegrated, and then a new version is reconstituted a moment later. Uploading may not be all that different from what happens to you each night when you go to sleep: you experience a little death of your consciousness, and the person who wakes up on your pillow the next morning inherits all your memories, and believes him or herself to be you. Are
David Eagleman (The Brain: The Story of You)
He handed me something done up in paper. 'Your mask,' he said. 'Don't put it on until we get past the city-limits.' It was a frightening-looking thing when I did so. It was not a mask but a hood for the entire head, canvas and cardboard, chalk-white to simulate a skull, with deep black hollows for the eyes and grinning teeth for the mouth. The private highway, as we neared the house, was lined on both sides with parked cars. I counted fifteen of them as we bashed by; and there must have been as many more ahead, in the other direction. We drew up and he and I got out. I glanced in cautiously over my shoulder at the driver as we went by, to see if I could see his face, but he too had donned one of the death-masks. 'Never do that,' the Messenger warned me in a low voice. 'Never try to penetrate any other member's disguise.' The house was as silent and lifeless as the last time - on the outside. Within it was a horrid, crawling charnel-house alive with skull-headed figures, their bodies encased in business-suits, tuxedos, and evening dresses. The lights were all dyed a ghastly green or ghostly blue, by means of colored tissue-paper sheathed around them. A group of masked musicians kept playing the Funeral March over and over, with brief pauses in between. A coffin stood in the center of the main living-room. I was drenched with sweat under my own mask and sick almost to death, even this early in the game. At last the Book-keeper, unmasked, appeared in their midst. Behind him came the Messenger. The dead-head guests all applauded enthusiastically and gathered around them in a ring. Those in other rooms came in. The musicians stopped the Death Match. The Book-keeper bowed, smiled graciously. 'Good evening, fellow corpses,' was his chill greeting. 'We are gathered together to witness the induction of our newest member.' There was an electric tension. 'Brother Bud!' His voice rang out like a clarion in the silence. 'Step forward.' ("Graves For Living")
Cornell Woolrich
Luther is credited with being among the first to clearly recognize the biblical teaching that justified Christians are both sinners and saints. He used the Latin expression, “simul iustus et peccator.” This is an essential part of the doctrine of justification because it relates to imputation. In imputation, Christ’s righteousness is credited to our accounts with God. In God’s sight, we become what we are not. We are sinners, but through Christ, we are accounted righteous. But even after justification, we still sin and we are still sinners. Not as far as our status with God goes, but as we live out our daily experience on this earth. This is important to note because later on in church history, the doctrine of justification comes under attack in Protestantism and it is revised heavily in an unbiblical direction. As a result, simul iustus et peccator also comes under attack. However, Luther saw that this was a crucial part of the biblical doctrine of justification. By God’s grace he recovered it for us.
Anonymous
Sometimes adoptive parents will go through a virtual pregnancy, using “birth clinics” or accessories called “tummy talkers,” package kits that supply a due date and body modifications, including the choice to make the growing fetus visible or not; as well as play-by-play announcements (“Your baby is doing flips!”) and the simulation of a “realistic delivery,” along with a newborn-baby accessory. For Second Life parents who go through pregnancy after adopting in-world, it’s usually with the understanding that the baby they are having is the child they have already adopted. The process is meant to give both parent and child the bond of a live birth. “Really get morning sickness,” one product promises. “Get aches.” Which means being informed that a body-that-is-not-your-corporeal-body is getting sick. “You have full control over your pregnancy, have it EXACTLY how you want,” this product advertises, which does seem to miss something central to the experience: that it subjects you to a process largely beyond your control.
Leslie Jamison (Make It Scream, Make It Burn)
Since their invention about half a century ago, video games have come to play a vital role in modern human civilization. I think this is because we modern humans were never designed to live like we do now—sitting in traffic, working in offices, shopping in stores. We are, by design, hunter-gatherers. Millions of years of evolution have wired our brains with an inherent need to hunt, gather, explore, solve puzzles, form teams, and conquer challenge after challenge in order to survive as we claw our way to the top of the food chain. For most people, day-to-day life no longer requires many of those experiences or challenges, and so those primal, instinctive needs inside us have no natural outlet. To keep our minds and bodies healthy, we have to simulate those old ways in the midst of our modern, technological lives, where everything on the planet has already been hunted and gathered. Thankfully, the technology that created this problem also gave rise to its solution—a way for us modern city dwellers to exorcise our inner evolutionary demons: video games.
Ernest Cline (Press Start to Play)
In the absence of expert [senior military] advice, we have seen each successive administration fail in the business of strategy - yielding a United States twice as rich as the Soviet Union but much less strong. Only the manner of the failure has changed. In the 1960s, under Robert S. McNamara, we witnessed the wholesale substitution of civilian mathematical analysis for military expertise. The new breed of the "systems analysts" introduced new standards of intellectual discipline and greatly improved bookkeeping methods, but also a trained incapacity to understand the most important aspects of military power, which happens to be nonmeasurable. Because morale is nonmeasurable it was ignored, in large and small ways, with disastrous effects. We have seen how the pursuit of business-type efficiency in the placement of each soldier destroys the cohesion that makes fighting units effective; we may recall how the Pueblo was left virtually disarmed when it encountered the North Koreans (strong armament was judged as not "cost effective" for ships of that kind). Because tactics, the operational art of war, and strategy itself are not reducible to precise numbers, money was allocated to forces and single weapons according to "firepower" scores, computer simulations, and mathematical studies - all of which maximize efficiency - but often at the expense of combat effectiveness. An even greater defect of the McNamara approach to military decisions was its businesslike "linear" logic, which is right for commerce or engineering but almost always fails in the realm of strategy. Because its essence is the clash of antagonistic and outmaneuvering wills, strategy usually proceeds by paradox rather than conventional "linear" logic. That much is clear even from the most shopworn of Latin tags: si vis pacem, para bellum (if you want peace, prepare for war), whose business equivalent would be orders of "if you want sales, add to your purchasing staff," or some other, equally absurd advice. Where paradox rules, straightforward linear logic is self-defeating, sometimes quite literally. Let a general choose the best path for his advance, the shortest and best-roaded, and it then becomes the worst path of all paths, because the enemy will await him there in greatest strength... Linear logic is all very well in commerce and engineering, where there is lively opposition, to be sure, but no open-ended scope for maneuver; a competitor beaten in the marketplace will not bomb our factory instead, and the river duly bridged will not deliberately carve out a new course. But such reactions are merely normal in strategy. Military men are not trained in paradoxical thinking, but they do no have to be. Unlike the business-school expert, who searches for optimal solutions in the abstract and then presents them will all the authority of charts and computer printouts, even the most ordinary military mind can recall the existence of a maneuvering antagonists now and then, and will therefore seek robust solutions rather than "best" solutions - those, in other words, which are not optimal but can remain adequate even when the enemy reacts to outmaneuver the first approach.
Edward N. Luttwak
Just how important a close moment-to-moment connection between mother and infant can be was illustrated by a cleverly designed study, known as the “double TV experiment,” in which infants and mothers interacted via a closed-circuit television system. In separate rooms, infant and mother observed each other and, on “live feed,” communicated by means of the universal infant-mother language: gestures, sounds, smiles, facial expressions. The infants were happy during this phase of the experiment. “When the infants were unknowingly replayed the ‘happy responses’ from the mother recorded from the prior minute,” writes the UCLA child psychiatrist Daniel J. Siegel, “they still became as profoundly distressed as infants do in the classic ‘flat face’ experiments in which mothers-in-person gave no facial emotional response to their infant’s bid for attunement.” Why were the infants distressed despite the sight of their mothers’ happy and friendly faces? Because happy and friendly are not enough. What they needed were signals that the mother is aligned with, responsive to and participating in their mental states from moment to moment. All that was lacking in the instant video replay, during which infants saw their mother’s face unresponsive to the messages they, the infants, were sending out. This sharing of emotional spaces is called attunement. Emotional stress on the mother interferes with infant brain development because it tends to interfere with the attunement contact. Attunement is necessary for the normal development of the brain pathways and neurochemical apparatus of attention and emotional selfregulation. It is a finely calibrated process requiring that the parent remain herself in a relatively nonstressed, non-anxious, nondepressed state of mind. Its clearest expression is the rapturous mutual gaze infant and mother direct at each other, locked in a private and special emotional realm, from which, at that moment, the rest of the world is as completely excluded as from the womb. Attunement does not mean mechanically imitating the infant. It cannot be simulated, even with the best of goodwill. As we all know, there are differences between a real smile and a staged smile. The muscles of smiling are exactly the same in each case, but the signals that set the smile muscles to work do not come from the same centers in the brain. As a consequence, those muscles respond differently to the signals, depending on their origin. This is why only very good actors can mimic a genuine, heartfelt smile. The attunement process is far too subtle to be maintained by a simple act of will on the part of the parent. Infants, particularly sensitive infants, intuit the difference between a parent’s real psychological states and her attempts to soothe and protect the infant by means of feigned emotional expressions. A loving parent who is feeling depressed or anxious may try to hide that fact from the infant, but the effort is futile. In fact, it is much easier to fool an adult with forced emotion than a baby. The emotional sensory radar of the infant has not yet been scrambled. It reads feelings clearly. They cannot be hidden from the infant behind a screen of words, or camouflaged by well-meant but forced gestures. It is unfortunate but true that we grow far more stupid than that by the time we reach adulthood.
Gabor Maté (Scattered: How Attention Deficit Disorder Originates and What You Can Do About It)
Guilt and self-image. When someone says, “I can’t forgive myself,” it indicates that some standard or condition or person is more central to this person’s identity than the grace of God. God is the only God who forgives — no other “god” will. If you cannot forgive yourself, it is because you have failed your true god — that is, whatever serves as your real righteousness — and it is holding you captive. The moralists’ false god is usually a god of their imagination, a god that is holy and demanding but not gracious. The relativist/pragmatist’s false god is usually some achievement or relationship. This is illustrated by the scene in the movie The Mission in which Rodrigo Mendoza, the former slave-trading mercenary played by Robert de Niro, converts to the church and as a way of showing penance drags his armor and weapons up steep cliffs. In the end, however, he picks up his armor and weapons to fight against the colonialists and dies at their hand. His picking up his weapons demonstrates he never truly converted from his mercenary ways, just as his penance demonstrated he didn’t get the message of forgiveness in the first place. The gospel brings rest and assurance to our consciences because Jesus shed his blood as a “ransom” for our sin (Mark 10:45). Our reconciliation with God is not a matter of keeping the law to earn our salvation, nor of berating ourselves when we fail to keep it. It is the “gift of God” (Rom 6:23). Without the gospel, our self-image is based on living up to some standards — either our own or someone else’s imposed on us. If we live up to those standards, we will be confident but not humble; if we don’t live up to them, we will be humble but not confident. Only in the gospel can we be both enormously bold and utterly sensitive and humble, for we are simul justus et peccator, both perfect and sinner!
Timothy J. Keller (Center Church: Doing Balanced, Gospel-Centered Ministry in Your City)
Q7. The total output of all the mathematicians who have ever lived, together with the output of all the human mathematicians of the next (say) thousand years is finite and could be contained in the memory banks of an appropriate computer. Surely this particular computer could, therefore, simulate this output and thus behave (externally) in the same way as a human mathematician-whatever the Godel argument might appear to tell us to the contrary? While this is presumably true, it ignores the essential issue, which is how we (or computers) know which mathematical statements are true and which are false. (In any case, the mere storage of mathematical statements is something that could be achieved by a system much less sophisticated than a general purpose computer, e.g. photographically.) The way that the computer is being employed in Q7 totally ignores the critical issue of truth judgment. One could equally well envisage computers that contain nothing but lists of totally false mathematical 'theorems', or lists containing random jumbles of truths and falsehoods. How are we to tell which computer to trust? The arguments that I am trying to make here do not say that an effective simulation of the output of conscious human activity (here mathematics) is impossible, since purely by chance the computer might 'happen' to get it right-even without any understanding whatsoever. But the odds against this are absurdly enormous, and the issues that are being addressed here, namely how one decides which mathematical statements are true and which are false, are not even being touched by Q7. There is, on the other hand, a more serious point that is indeed being touched upon in Q7. This is the question as to whether discussions about infinite structures (e.g. all natural numbers or all computations) are really relevant to our considerations here, when the outputs of humans and computers are finite.
Roger Penrose (Shadows of the Mind: A Search for the Missing Science of Consciousness)
Unchopping a Tree. Start with the leaves, the small twigs, and the nests that have been shaken, ripped, or broken off by the fall; these must be gathered and attached once again to their respective places. It is not arduous work, unless major limbs have been smashed or mutilated. If the fall was carefully and correctly planned, the chances of anything of the kind happening will have been reduced. Again, much depends upon the size, age, shape, and species of the tree. Still, you will be lucky if you can get through this stages without having to use machinery. Even in the best of circumstances it is a labor that will make you wish often that you had won the favor of the universe of ants, the empire of mice, or at least a local tribe of squirrels, and could enlist their labors and their talents. But no, they leave you to it. They have learned, with time. This is men's work. It goes without saying that if the tree was hollow in whole or in part, and contained old nests of bird or mammal or insect, or hoards of nuts or such structures as wasps or bees build for their survival, the contents will have to repaired where necessary, and reassembled, insofar as possible, in their original order, including the shells of nuts already opened. With spider's webs you must simply do the best you can. We do not have the spider's weaving equipment, nor any substitute for the leaf's living bond with its point of attachment and nourishment. It is even harder to simulate the latter when the leaves have once become dry — as they are bound to do, for this is not the labor of a moment. Also it hardly needs saying that this the time fro repairing any neighboring trees or bushes or other growth that might have been damaged by the fall. The same rules apply. Where neighboring trees were of the same species it is difficult not to waste time conveying a detached leaf back to the wrong tree. Practice, practice. Put your hope in that. Now the tackle must be put into place, or the scaffolding, depending on the surroundings and the dimension of the tree. It is ticklish work. Almost always it involves, in itself, further damage to the area, which will have to be corrected later. But, as you've heard, it can't be helped. And care now is likely to save you considerable trouble later. Be careful to grind nothing into the ground. At last the time comes for the erecting of the trunk. By now it will scarcely be necessary to remind you of the delicacy of this huge skeleton. Every motion of the tackle, every slightly upward heave of the trunk, the branches, their elaborately reassembled panoply of leaves (now dead) will draw from you an involuntary gasp. You will watch for a lead or a twig to be snapped off yet again. You will listen for the nuts to shift in the hollow limb and you will hear whether they are indeed falling into place or are spilling in disorder — in which case, or in the event of anything else of the kind — operations will have to cease, of course, while you correct the matter. The raising itself is no small enterprise, from the moment when the chains tighten around the old bandages until the boles hands vertical above the stump, splinter above splinter. How the final straightening of the splinters themselves can take place (the preliminary work is best done while the wood is still green and soft, but at times when the splinters are not badly twisted most of the straightening is left until now, when the torn ends are face to face with each other). When the splinters are perfectly complementary the appropriate fixative is applied. Again we have no duplicate of the original substance. Ours is extremely strong, but it is rigid. It is limited to surfaces, and there is no play in it. However the core is not the part of the trunk that conducted life from the roots up to the branches and back again. It was relatively inert. The fixative for this part is not the same as the one for the outer layers and the bark, and if either of these is involved
W.S. Merwin
Certain shapes and patterns hover over different moments in time, haunting and inspiring the individuals living through those periods. The epic clash and subsequent resolution of the dialectic animated the first half of the nineteenth century; the Darwinian and social reform movements scattered web imagery through the second half of the century. The first few decades of the twentieth century found their ultimate expression in the exuberant anarchy of the explosion, while later decades lost themselves in the faceless regimen of the grid. You can see the last ten years or so as a return to those Victorian webs, though I suspect the image that has been burned into our retinas over the past decade is more prosaic: windows piled atop one another on a screen, or perhaps a mouse clicking on an icon. These shapes are shorthand for a moment in time, a way of evoking an era and its peculiar obsessions. For individuals living within these periods, the shapes are cognitive building blocks, tools for thought: Charles Darwin and George Eliot used the web as a way of understanding biological evolution and social struggles; a half century later, the futurists embraced the explosions of machine-gun fire, while Picasso used them to re-create the horrors of war in Guernica. The shapes are a way of interpreting the world, and while no shape completely represents its epoch, they are an undeniable component of the history of thinking. When I imagine the shape that will hover above the first half of the twenty-first century, what comes to mind is not the coiled embrace of the genome, or the etched latticework of the silicon chip. It is instead the pulsing red and green pixels of Mitch Resnick’s slime mold simulation, moving erratically across the screen at first, then slowly coalescing into larger forms. The shape of those clusters—with their lifelike irregularity, and their absent pacemakers—is the shape that will define the coming decades. I see them on the screen, growing and dividing, and I think: That way lies the future.
Steven Johnson (Emergence: The Connected Lives of Ants, Brains, Cities, and Software)
From the story he told me, I pictured him among those bands of vagrants that in the years that followed I saw more and more often roaming about Europe: false monks, charlatans, swindlers, cheats, tramps and tatterdemalions, lepers and cripples, jugglers, invalid mercenaries, wandering Jews escaped from the infidels with their spirit broken, lunatics, fugitives under banishment, malefactors with an ear cut off, sodomites, and along with them ambulant artisans, weavers, tinkers, chair-menders, knife-grinders, basket-weavers, masons, and also rogues of every stripe, forgers, scoundrels, cardsharps, rascals, bullies, reprobates, recreants, frauds, hooligans, simoniacal and embezzling canons and priests, people who lived on the credulity of others, counterfeiters of bulls and papal seals, peddlers of indulgences, false paralytics who lay at church doors, vagrants fleeing from convents, relic-sellers, pardoners, soothsayers and fortunetellers, necromancers, healers, bogus alms-seekers, fornicators of every sort, corruptors of nuns and maidens by deception and violence, simulators of dropsy, epilepsy, hemorrhoids, gout, and sores, as well as melancholy madness. There were those who put plasters on their bodies to imitate incurable ulcerations, others who filled their mouths with a blood-colored substance to feign accesses of consumption, rascals who pretended to be weak in one of their limbs, carrying unnecessary crutches and imitating the falling sickness, scabies, buboes, swellings, while applying bandages, tincture of saffron, carrying irons on their hands, their heads swathed, slipping into the churches stinking, and suddenly fainting in the squares, spitting saliva and popping their eyes, making the nostrils spurt blood concocted of blackberry juice and vermilion, to wrest food or money from the frightened people who recalled the church fathers’ exhortations to give alms: Share your bread with the hungry, take the homeless to your hearth, we visit Christ, we house Christ, we clothe Christ, because as water purges fire so charity purges our sins.
Umberto Eco (The Name Of The Rose)
THE IRIS OF THE EYE WAS TOO BIG TO HAVE BEEN FABRICATED AS A single rigid object. It had been built, beginning about nine hundred years ago, out of links that had been joined together into a chain; the two ends of the chain then connected to form a loop. The method would have seemed familiar to Rhys Aitken, who had used something like it to construct Izzy’s T3 torus. For him, or anyone else versed in the technological history of Old Earth, an equally useful metaphor would have been that it was a train, 157 kilometers long, made of 720 giant cars, with the nose of the locomotive joined to the tail of the caboose so that it formed a circular construct 50 kilometers in diameter. An even better analogy would have been to a roller coaster, since its purpose was to run loop-the-loops forever. The “track” on which the “train” ran was a circular groove in the iron frame of the Eye, lined with the sensors and magnets needed to supply electrodynamic suspension, so that the whole thing could spin without actually touching the Eye’s stationary frame. This was an essential design requirement given that the Great Chain had to move with a velocity of about five hundred meters per second in order to supply Earth-normal gravity to its inhabitants. Each of the links had approximately the footprint of a Manhattan city block on Old Earth. And their total number of 720 was loosely comparable to the number of such blocks that had once existed in the gridded part of Manhattan, depending on where you drew the boundaries—it was bigger than Midtown but smaller than Manhattan as a whole. Residents of the Great Chain were acutely aware of the comparison, to the point where they were mocked for having a “Manhattan complex” by residents of other habitats. They were forever freeze-framing Old Earth movies or zooming around in virtual-reality simulations of pre-Zero New York for clues as to how street and apartment living had worked in those days. They had taken as their patron saint Luisa, the eighth survivor on Cleft, a Manhattanite who had been too old to found her own race. Implicit in that was that the Great Chain—the GC, Chaintown, Chainhattan—was a place that people might move to when they wanted to separate themselves from the social environments of their home habitats, or indeed of their own races. Mixed-race people were more common there than anywhere else.
Neal Stephenson (Seveneves)
I try to catch my breath and calm myself down, but it isn’t easy. I was dead. I was dead, and then I wasn’t, and why? Because of Peter? Peter? I stare at him. He still looks so innocent, despite all that he has done to prove that he is not. His hair lies smooth against his head, shiny and dark, like we didn’t just run for a mile at full speed. His round eyes scan the stairwell and then rest on my face. “What?” he says. “Why are you looking at me like that?” “How did you do it?” I say. “It wasn’t that hard,” he says. “I dyed a paralytic serum purple and switched it out with the death serum. Replaced the wire that was supposed to ready your heartbeat with a dead one. The bit with the heart monitor was harder; I had to get some Erudite help with a remote and stuff--you wouldn’t understand it if I explained it to you.” “Why did you do it?” I say. “You want me dead. You were willing to do it yourself? What changed?” He presses his lips together and doesn’t look away, not for a long time. Then he opens his mouth, hesitates, and finally says, “I can’t be in anyone’s debt. Okay? The idea that I owed you something made me sick. I would wake up in the middle of the night feeling like I was going to vomit. Indebted to a Stiff? It’s ridiculous. Absolutely ridiculous. And I couldn’t have it.” “What are you talking about? You owed me something?” He rolls his eyes. “The Amity compound. Someone shot me--the bullet was at head level; it would have hit me right between the eyes. And you shoved me out of the way. We were even before that--I almost killed you during initiation, you almost killed me during the attack simulation; we’re square, right? But after that…” “You’re insane,” says Tobias. “That’s not the way the world works…with everyone keeping score.” “It’s not?” Peter raises his eyebrows. “I don’t know what world you live in, but in mine, people only do things for you for one of two reasons. The first is if they want something in return. And the second is if they feel like they owe you something.” “Those aren’t the only reasons people do things for you,” I say. “Sometimes they do them because they love you. Well, maybe not you, but…” Peter snorts. “That’s exactly the kind of garbage I expect a delusional stiff to say.” “I guess we just have to make sure you owe us,” says Tobias. “Or you’ll go running to whoever offers you the best deal.” “Yeah,” Peter says. “That’s pretty much how it is.
Veronica Roth (Insurgent (Divergent, #2))
you need only believe that everything is a lie. If the world is not real, if everything we see is a simulation or a game, then the fictions we append to it are no different from the ones which come to us through our senses. And it is true: the odds, overwhelmingly, tell us that we exist inside a computer. Any universe that can support technological life probably will, given enough time. Any technological civilisation will develop modelling, and will in a comparatively insignificant span be able to model everything a planet-bound species could expect to encounter. That being the case, the simulation will rapidly reach the point where it contains simulated computers with the ability to simulate likewise everything a planet-bound species could expect to encounter, and so on and so on in an infinite regress limited only by computing power. That might seem like a hard limit, but processing power still doubles every twelve to eighteen months, and doubling is more extraordinary than people understand. There’s a story that the Emperor of China once lost his throne gambling with a peasant, because he agreed if he lost to pay a single grain of rice on the first square of a chess board and double the amount on each square on the next until he had covered the board. His debt for the final square was eighteen and a half million trillion grains. It is almost impossible to imagine the capabilities of a machine that much more powerful than the ones we have today, but I think we can accept it could hold quite a lot of simulations of our world. The odds, therefore, are negligible that we live in the origin universe, and considerable that we are quite a few steps down the layers of reality. Everything you know, everything you have ever seen or experienced, is probably not what it appears to be. The most alarming notion is that someone – or everyone – you know might be an avatar of someone a level up: they might know that you’re a game piece, that you’re invented and they are real. Perhaps that explains your sense of unfulfilled potential: you truly are incomplete, a semi-autonomous reflection of something vast. And yet, if so, what does that say about those vast ones beyond? Are they just replicating a truth they secretly recognise about themselves? Russian dolls, one inside the other, until the smallest doll embraces the outermost and everything begins again? Who really inhabits whom, and who is in control?
Nick Harkaway (Gnomon)
There is no fault that can’t be corrected [in natural wine] with one powder or another; no feature that can’t be engineered from a bottle, box, or bag. Wine too tannic? Fine it with Ovo-Pure (powdered egg whites), isinglass (granulate from fish bladders), gelatin (often derived from cow bones and pigskins), or if it’s a white, strip out pesky proteins that cause haziness with Puri-Bent (bentonite clay, the ingredient in kitty litter). Not tannic enough? Replace $1,000 barrels with a bag of oak chips (small wood nuggets toasted for flavor), “tank planks” (long oak staves), oak dust (what it sounds like), or a few drops of liquid oak tannin (pick between “mocha” and “vanilla”). Or simulate the texture of barrel-aged wines with powdered tannin, then double what you charge. (““Typically, the $8 to $12 bottle can be brought up to $15 to $20 per bottle because it gives you more of a barrel quality. . . . You’re dressing it up,” a sales rep explained.) Wine too thin? Build fullness in the mouth with gum arabic (an ingredient also found in frosting and watercolor paint). Too frothy? Add a few drops of antifoaming agent (food-grade silicone oil). Cut acidity with potassium carbonate (a white salt) or calcium carbonate (chalk). Crank it up again with a bag of tartaric acid (aka cream of tartar). Increase alcohol by mixing the pressed grape must with sugary grape concentrate, or just add sugar. Decrease alcohol with ConeTech’s spinning cone, or Vinovation’s reverse-osmosis machine, or water. Fake an aged Bordeaux with Lesaffre’s yeast and yeast derivative. Boost “fresh butter” and “honey” aromas by ordering the CY3079 designer yeast from a catalog, or go for “cherry-cola” with the Rhône 2226. Or just ask the “Yeast Whisperer,” a man with thick sideburns at the Lallemand stand, for the best yeast to meet your “stylistic goals.” (For a Sauvignon Blanc with citrus aromas, use the Uvaferm SVG. For pear and melon, do Lalvin Ba11. For passion fruit, add Vitilevure Elixir.) Kill off microbes with Velcorin (just be careful, because it’s toxic). And preserve the whole thing with sulfur dioxide. When it’s all over, if you still don’t like the wine, just add a few drops of Mega Purple—thick grape-juice concentrate that’s been called a “magical potion.” It can plump up a wine, make it sweeter on the finish, add richer color, cover up greenness, mask the horsey stink of Brett, and make fruit flavors pop. No one will admit to using it, but it ends up in an estimated 25 million bottles of red each year. “Virtually everyone is using it,” the president of a Monterey County winery confided to Wines and Vines magazine. “In just about every wine up to $20 a bottle anyway, but maybe not as much over that.
Bianca Bosker (Cork Dork: A Wine-Fueled Adventure Among the Obsessive Sommeliers, Big Bottle Hunters, and Rogue Scientists Who Taught Me to Live for Taste)
Insurgent is one of the most exciting books you will ever read. Because of how exciting it is, how realistic the plot is, and the live lessons it teaches. The book has action, adventure and romance. Youll never want to put the book down. The was very suspenseful and kept you at the edge of your seat. Everything about the book was exciting. Like when Tris broke into the Dauntless compound to shut down the simulation. The plot was very realistic too. It shows what the world could become of one day. Likw how the factions were created and why, so it could make society more stable for people to live in. It can teach you important lessons. It shows how consequences occur with the action you take, and how you need to think before you act. Like how Tris snuck into the Eruidite compound and then she realized that she didn't want to die like how she thought she wanted to at first. I think that the book Insurgent is an amzing book then everyone should read. Because of how exctiting the book is, how realistic, and the lessons it teaches. This is why Insurgent is the best book I have ever read.
Insurgent
Paris-Plage: the operation would be perfect if an oil slick drifted in to pollute this pretty little beach. Then the illusion would be total: the beach attendants would be transformed into ecological clean-up agents; they would have stopped sunbathing stupid. WTC: no trace of the bodies of the 3,000 victims. It's as though they had been dropped into quicklime. All the images without the sound, silent, vitrified, pellicularized. The scrap metal and the rubble are auctioned off. The event has more or less vanished into thin air. The pope has reached the state of 'martyr', that is to say, of witness: witness to the possibility that the human race can live beyond death. Living experience of brain-death, of spirituality on a life-support system, of automatic piloting of the vital functions in their death throes. A great model for future generations
Jean Baudrillard (Cool Memories V: 2000 - 2004)
What kind of sadistic God would allow for all this to happen?” thought Robbie with anger, “What is the reason to live if we all die anyway sooner or later?
Iurii Vovchenko (Answers In Simulation: Simulation Hypothesis as a story)
The ability to have a choice is a wonderful gift we have, which is worth living for,
Iurii Vovchenko (Answers In Simulation: Simulation Hypothesis as a story)
The brain internally simulates what will happen if you were to perform some action under specific conditions. Internal models not only play a role in motor acts (such as catching or dodging) but also underlie conscious perception.
David Eagleman (Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain)
Unlike GTA, in real life, the law is a thing and jail is a thing. But that's about where the differences end. If someone gave you a perfect simulation of today's world to play in and told you that it's all fake with no actual consequences - with the only rules being that can't break the law or harm anyone, and you still have to make sure to support you and your family's basic needs - what would you do? My guess is that most people would do all kinds of things they'd love to do in their real life but wouldn't dare to try, and by behaving that way they'd end up quickly getting a life going on in the simulation that's both far more successful and much truer to themselves than the real life they're currently living. Removing the fear and the concern with identity or the opinions of others would thrust the person into the not-actually-risky Chef Lab and have them bouncing around all the exhilarating places outside their comfort zone - and their lives would take off. That's the life irrational fears blocks us from.
Tim Urban
When my son comes home today, he will play with the computer. Then he will go and do his homework, where he will use books for his reading, writing, and math exercises. My daughter, who is still in preschool, will simulate this process in reverse, playing with her notebooks, while the computer is still very much work for her. My hope is that these two categories, work and play, will remain as interwoven throughout their lives as the instruments that they use to engage in them, the book and the computer. I hope they are afforded the advantages of both, and that they pass on those advantages to others. My real hope, though, is that when it comes time to learn how these two very different instruments work (and play), I can send them to just one camp.
Andrew Piper (Book Was There: Reading in Electronic Times)
To summarize the strategy: An Angel is a low float Stock in Play which is gapping with heavy volume in the pre-market. At the market Open, our Angel makes a new high of the day but sells off quickly. You do not want to jump into the trade yet, not until it consolidates around an important trading level such as the low of the pre-market, or moving averages on your daily or 5-minute chart. This is where our Angel will have fallen to. As soon as the stock is coming back up with heavy volume, that is the place you take the trade to the long side. The entry signal is to see a new 1-minute or 5-minute high after the consolidation with MASSIVE volume only. You must remember that the volume on the way up needs to be significantly higher than previous candlesticks. The stop loss is below the consolidation period. The profit target can be (1) VWAP, (2) the then high of the day, (3) the high of the pre-market, and (4) any other important level nearby such as Y High or Y Low. If you don’t see an obvious support level and consolidation, do not trade the stock. If you see a breakout but it does not have strong volume, do not trade the stock. Fallen Angel is generally a difficult strategy to trade, especially since it is difficult to manage the risk in. You will have seen in the above examples that most of the drops are sharp, and if you are not quick in getting out of a losing trade, you may get stuck in a very bad position and be forced to accept a heavy loss. Remember, these stocks often gapped up significantly and can lose the majority of their gap during the day, so holding them during the day may not be a good idea, especially if volume is dropping during the day. I recommend trading this strategy in the simulator for some period of time before trading it live. When you go live, make sure to take small size. I know, it is easy to take a 10,000 share on a $1 stock, but remember, every cent up and down in a $1 stock is the equivalent of a 1% swing in your position. I usually take 4,000 shares for low float stocks below $10.
Andrew Aziz (Advanced Techniques in Day Trading: A Practical Guide to High Probability Day Trading Strategies and Methods)
Some scientists are saying that for some reason an advanced race of aliens might create such a computer game in order to see how their very remote ancestors (ancestors who may have lived thousands of years ago) lived and evolved. This is called an 'ancestor simulation'. Perhaps a very advanced race of aliens no longer needs physical bodies. A being from such an advanced race of aliens may want to create an 'ancestor simulation' program to experience what life was like when they had physical bodies, made love, felt physical pleasure, pain and had to work for a living.
Laurence Galian (Alien Parasites: 40 Gnostic Truths to Defeat the Archon Invasion!)
The equilibrium of the system is always in crisis, but this produces no serious consequences. The needle merely oscillates around a hypothetical centre, a statistical median. The oscillations no longer lead to the system being overturned, since it no longer has a centre of gravity. The 1929 crisis could not recur today. It has been replaced by a perpetual crisis simulation. In the same way, it is possible for the heroic or intrinsic values of a society to collapse, whereas the same values in renovated, simulated, face-lifted form (take Reagan, for example) no longer run the risk of ending in catastrophe. They are no longer in danger of having their weight plunge them to a sticky end. They either float or, like currencies, follow the writhing course of the snake. We do the same in our own lives: with a float on each side, we go forward oscillating around a hypothetical equilibrium path, keeping our distance from the fatal declinations.
Jean Baudrillard (Cool Memories)
I no longer even need a window to follow the journey. I can narrate it to myself hour by hour, live it from memory, all of it - canyons, towns, the reflection of the clouds in the rivers. Memory has taken on wings and speed has become an inner quality. A pity. No doubt it was better that this purely fornicatory and imaginary relationship, with her sexual voracity and her ankle bracelets, which we carried on all over the place - in the Badlands, in the Chelsea Hotel, in motels, in the sand, between the sheets - and which always meant immediate lovemaking in the minutes that followed, never satisfied, but just as sweet, and flexible and blonde, her eyes raised like a slavegirl's and her hand outstretched towards her sex, she free and servile, feminine and muscled, laughing and admiring, animal blood and metallic eyes - it was natural that this relationship should finish with a pathetic fellatio on a motel balcony, in the morning mist and a hypothetical child which no doubt was not mine and which I shall never see. I have even forgotten her name, but I have not forgotten the straw scent of her sex, nor the twenty-dollar bet on salt or snow, nor the sudden menstrual nosebleed I had one morning when I saw her arriving at my place in all her Californian splendour.
Jean Baudrillard (Cool Memories)
The creation of artificial realities is not much different from how we enjoy today's movies depicting life in Ancient Egypt, life during the Middle Ages, reenactment of wars, or life during the Renaissance. We are living in a virtual reality universe, a video game created by a civilization 1,000 to 100,000 years older than us. And they themselves are also simulations (virtual reality). These levels of hierarchies can extend to a vast degree above us, creating levels of gods or spirits.
Laurence Galian (Alien Parasites: 40 Gnostic Truths to Defeat the Archon Invasion!)
Whether we (humans) are living in a simulation or multiverse or in god made universe, some things are true everywhere. Freedom, unconditional love, goodness, consciousness , existence itself is real among those things.
Mohamed evanz
So you were dissidents? You believed in finishing the USSR?''No. It's not like that. You just speak several languages at the same time, all the time. There's like several "you"s.' Seen from this perspective, the great drama of Russia is not the 'transition' between communism and capitalism, between one fervently held set of beliefs and another, but that during the final decades of the USSR no one believed in communism and yet carried on living as if they did, and now they can only create a society of simulations.
Peter Pomerantsev (Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible: The Surreal Heart of the New Russia)
But any distrust regarding the analogy-based approach would soon vanish: at IBM, Kirkpatrick and Gelatt’s simulated annealing algorithms started making better chip layouts than the guru. Rather than keep mum about their secret weapon and become cryptic guru figures themselves, they published their method in a paper in Science, opening it up to others. Over the next few decades, that paper would be cited a whopping thirty-two thousand times. To this day, simulated annealing remains one of the most promising approaches to optimization problems known to the field.
Brian Christian (Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions)
But now, preposterously, the morning hard-on was gone. The things one has to put up with in life. The morning hard-on - like a crowbar in your hand, like something growing out of an ogre. Does any other species wake up with a hard-on? Do whales? Do bats? Evolution daily reminder to male Homo Sapiens in case, overnight, they forget why they're here. If a woman didn't know what it was, it might well scare her to death. Couldn't piss in the bowl because of that thing. Had to force it downward with your hand - had to train it as you would a dog to the leash - so that the stream struck the water and not the upturned seat. When you sat to shit, there it was, loyally looking up at its master. There eagerly waiting while you brush your teeth - "What are we going to do today?" Nothing more faithful in all of life than the lurid cravings of the morning hard-on. No deceit in it. No simulation. No insincerity. All hail to that driving force! Human living with a capital L! It takes a lifetime to determine what matters, and by then it's not there anymore. Well, one must learn to adapt. How is the only problem.
Philip Roth (Sabbath's Theater)
The metaphor of multiple lives entered the video game world well after the Eastern doctrines of reincarnation and its concept of multiple lives. It’s not clear whether the original moniker of “multiple lives” in video games had any connection with multiple lives in Eastern spiritual traditions.
Rizwan Virk (The Simulation Hypothesis)
Yet for those people born onto the autistic spectrum, this unedited, unfiltered and scary-as-all-hell reality is home. The functions that genetics bestows on the rest of us—the “editors”—as a birthright, people with autism must spend their lives learning how to simulate. It is an intellectual and emotional task of Herculean, Sisyphean and Titanic proportions, and if the autistic people who undertake it aren’t heroes, then I don’t know what heroism is, never mind that the heroes have no choice. Sentience itself is not so much a fact to be taken for granted, but a brick-by-brick, self-built construct requiring constant maintenance. As if this wasn’t a tall enough order, people with autism must survive in an outside world where “special needs” is playground slang for “retarded,” where meltdowns and panic attacks are viewed as tantrums, where disability allowance claimants are assumed by many to be welfare scroungers, and where British foreign policy can be described as “autistic” by a French minister. (M.
Naoki Higashida (The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy with Autism)
Is it hard for you to be in an Abnegation house again? I meant to ask before. We can go somewhere else, if it is.” I finish my second piece of bread. All Abnegation houses are the same, so this living room is exactly the same as my own, and it does bring back memories, if I look at it carefully. Light glowing through the blinds every morning, enough for my father to read by. The click of my mother’s knitting needles every evening. But I don’t feel like I’m choking. It’s a start. “Yes,” I say. “But not as hard as you might think.” He raises an eyebrow. “Really. The simulations in Erudite headquarters…helped me, somehow. To hold on, maybe.” I frown. “Or maybe not. Maybe they helped me to stop holding on so tightly.” That sounds right. “Someday I’ll tell you about it.” My voice sounds far away. He touches my cheek and, even though we’re in a room full of people, crowded by laughter and conversation, slowly kisses me. “Whoa there, Tobias,” says the man to my left. “Weren’t you raised a Stiff? I thought the most you people did was…graze hands or something.” “Then how do you explain all the Abnegation children?” Tobias raises his eyebrows. “They’re brought into being by sheer force of will,” the woman on the arm of the chair interjects. “Didn’t you know that, Tobias?” “No, I wasn’t aware.” He grins. “My apologies.” They all laugh. We all laugh. And it occurs to me that I might be meeting Tobias’s true faction. They are not characterized by a particular virtue. They claim all colors, all activities, all virtues, and all flaws as their own. I don’t know what binds them together. The only common ground they have, as far as I know, is failure. Whatever it is, it seems to be enough. I feel, as I look at him, that I am finally seeing him as he is, instead of how he is in relation to me. So how well do I really know him, if I have not seen this before?
Veronica Roth (Insurgent (Divergent, #2))
Whenever I ask my Russian bosses, the older TV producers and media types who run the system, what it was like growing up in the late Soviet Union, whether they believed in the communist ideology that surrounded them, they always laugh at me. ‘Don’t be silly,’ most answer. ‘But you sang the songs? Were good members of the Komsomol?’ ‘Of course we did, and we felt good when we sang them. And then straight after we would listen to Deep Purple and the BBC.’ ‘So you were dissidents? You believed in finishing the USSR?’ ‘No. It’s not like that. You just speak several languages at the same time, all the time. There’s like several “you”s.’ Seen from this perspective, the great drama of Russia is not the ‘transition’ between communism and capitalism, between one fervently held set of beliefs and another, but that during the final decades of the USSR no one believed in communism and yet carried on living as if they did, and now they can only create a society of simulations.
Peter Pomerantsev (Nothing is True and Everything is Possible: Adventures in Modern Russia)
From the story he told me, I pictured him among those bands of vagrants that in the years that followed I saw more and more often roaming about Europe: false monks, charlatans, swindlers, cheats, tramps and tatterdemalions, lepers and cripples, jugglers, invalid mercenaries, wandering Jews escaped from the infidels with their spirit broken, lunatics, fugitives under banishment, malefactors with an ear cut off, sodomites, and along with them ambulant artisans, weavers, tinkers, chair-menders, knife-grinders, basket-weavers, masons, and also rogues of every stripe, forgers, scoundrels, cardsharps, rascals, bullies, reprobates, recreants, frauds, hooligans, simoniacal and embezzling canons and priests, people who lived on the credulity of others, counterfeiters of bulls and papal seals, peddlers of indulgences, false paralytics who lay at church doors, vagrants fleeing from convents, relic-sellers, soothsayers and fortunetellers, necromancers, healers, bogus alms-seekers, fornicators of every sort, corruptors of nuns and maidens by deception and violence, simulators of dropsy, epilepsy, hemorrhoids, gout, and sores, as well as melancholy madness. There were those who put plasters on their bodies to imitate incurable ulcerations, others who filled their mouths with a blood-colored substance to feign accesses of consumption, rascals who pretended to be weak in one of their limbs, carrying unnecessary crutches and imitating the falling sickness, scabies, buboes, swellings, while applying bandages, tincture of saffron, carrying irons on their hands, their heads swathed, slipping into the churches stinking, and suddenly fainting in the squares, spitting saliva and popping their eyes, making the nostrils spurt blood concocted of blackberry juice and vermilion, to wrest food or money from the frightened people who recalled the church fathers’ exhortations to give alms: Share your bread with the hungry, take the homeless to your hearth, we visit Christ, we house Christ, we clothe Christ, because as water purges fire so charity purges our sins.
Umberto Eco (The Name of the Rose)
It is essential to consider as a constant point of reference in this essay the regular hiatus between what we fancy we know and what we really know, practical assent and simulated ignorance which allows us to live with ideas which, if we truly put them to the test, ought to upset our whole life.
Albert Camus (The Myth of Sisyphus)
1. Learn to love Parrots, dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits, they are all excellent simulators of tenderness, they teach kindness and love. Practice, learn from them to be gentle and sweet, empathetic, caring, faithful, all this will help you in a relationship with the opposite sex. To your soulmate, as often as possible, give affection, kiss, hug, love with your heart and soul, and only then with the genitals. 2. Love is like chewing gum. First you see a bubble of gum, and touching your lips, it tightens to her lips, and molded into a delicious kiss. Its body turns into a chewing gum and you stick to it tightly and you become one, completely turned into chewing gum, chewing gum becomes your single flesh. The fresh aroma of gum as a symbol of unstoppable passion, over time, loses the sweet taste of lust. But the only thing that remains is that it has neither color nor taste - this is love - this is a combination at the level of two eternal souls blinded together. 3. Love is the peace and tenderness of the light of souls, the union of tenderness. From love you fall into a gap in space and time, love outside the dimension is a very special space for two lovers in ordinary reality. 4. Reality is a snowstorm, and you, like a real man, must all your life, warm your darling with your love and care. 5. True love is the cure for lust. And lust is the cure for true love. 6. Never forget what you love your loved one for. 7. All wear the same bodies in the next lives, and feel deja vu. The most romantic guy in the world will say to his beloved: I have won your heart in this life. In the next life, I will find you, and conquer it again. 8. Your loved one is your best thought in all your mind, throughout your whole life. 9. Love is so similar to sex pose 69. 10. Love is a warm, gentle light that gives peace to the soul of a loved one, this divine light of disinterested nobility in the darkness of egoism, this light is priceless. 11. Slippery macho inside you, takes away your true love. 12. Love is a giant star in your own cosmos. Which is located in the center of the universe, which is filled, it is surrounded by everyday garbage, various trifles. 13. Two lovers are two galaxies merged together, merged into the ages.
Musin Almat Zhumabekovich
This approach, called Simulated Annealing, seemed like an intriguing way to map physics onto problem solving. But would it work? The initial reaction among more traditional optimization researchers was that this whole approach just seemed a little too … metaphorical. “I couldn’t convince math people that this messy stuff with temperatures, all this analogy-based stuff, was real,” says Kirkpatrick, “because mathematicians are trained to really distrust intuition.
Brian Christian (Algorithms To Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions)
Equipped with the right amount of dark matter, computer simulations reveal the formation of large regions of filamentary web-like networks of dark matter and hydrogen gas. At the nodes of these filaments, hydrogen gas coalesces, similar to water droplets on a spiderweb after a rainfall. It is in these regions, called protogalaxies, where hydrogen gas gets gravitationally concentrated into the first stars. Through nuclear fusion, the immense gravitational pressure in the star converts hydrogen into heavier elements. These first-generation stars can be up to one million times more massive than our sun. The first generation of stars lives on the order of one hundred million years and eventually dies through supernova explosions.
Stephon Alexander (The Jazz of Physics: The Secret Link Between Music and the Structure of the Universe)
When collected, the simulations plot a map showing the highest chance of the evolution of the lactase persistence allele, and it locates it in an area engulfing Slovakia, with Poland to the north and Hungary to the south. This fits with the archaeology, and the residues found in those Hungarian and Polish farmyard digs. At 7,500 years ago, these people were farmers with structured garden farms, where they grew wheat, peas, lentils, and millet. They husbanded cattle, swine, and goats, and occasionally hunted boar and deer on top of their agrarian lifestyle.
Adam Rutherford (A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived: The Human Story Retold Through Our Genes)
we now think of the sound of recordings when we think of a song or piece of music, and the live performance of that same piece is now considered an interpretation of the recorded version. What was originally a simulation of a performance—the recording—has supplanted performances, and performances are now considered the simulation.
David Byrne (How Music Works)
you want to decide how something (a new job, an exotic trip) will feel in the future, you might try to imagine yourself doing it in the present.4 Simulate the events as vividly as possible, in great detail, by essentially pre-living them.
Walter Mischel (The Marshmallow Test: Understanding Self-control and How To Master It)
1. Music rap beat: The creak of a door wao wao wao. Wao Wao Tum Tum Tum Wao WaoThe smashing sword of feelings cuts the emptiness of reality that feels the powerlessness of the fighter against fate 2. Music rap beat: Tuk tchak tututu tchak tutu tchak tututu tchak tutu tchak tchak tchak tutu tchak.Memory is a palace of photographs and in each room you can watch a video of memories, this palace is on fire, and new photos fly out of your head that rebuild a new castle. 3. Music rap beat: empty drum sound and beat rhythm house here tuka tu dum tuk tutu tuka house. Fake laughter as a simulated orgasm of optimism. 4. Music: Bowl Sound: woo-woo-beat rhythm: Tu-Ta-Ta-Tu-Tu-Doom Remembering, fears, desires, mysterious entities, all of them are in your hotel subconscious where you are just a doorman. 5. Compass of awareness in the hands of the one who is eating in the elevator of consciousness, awareness in the very top. On the higher floors, they will understand that they have not yet grown to logic, and where logic breaks down and the highest level of thinking begins: infinite love. 6. Thinking is life, the death of thinking and philosophy gives birth to a new form of life in a new dimension of thinking. 7. Instincts are fear, therefore we are still part of the animal world, because of fear we live in a cultural ghetto. Intuition is the courage of conscience in the heart. 8. Love is when it is pleasant to dream and think about your beloved person and to receive sincere pleasure taking care of him. 9. A philosopher is a whirling six-barreled machine gun firing thoughts, ideas into people's souls and bullets never end; a slight evil smile of awareness comes from them; everyone realizes the evil joke of reality. 10. Periodically, the light of the stairs illuminates the corridors of the staircases, everything changes and is illuminated by a beacon of good luck for our lives. 11. Insanely laughing psycheFrom disappointment, the soul cannot stop laughing with a frightening uncontrolled laugh, between fear and uncontrolled angry laughter. The smiling, insanely laughing psyche growls and tears to pieces from the high-voltage psychic tension that gives birth to truth, from a smile the philosophy of the psyche breaks into two parts of the duality of the world. A huge smile is visible in the broken mirror of the psyche, and only sometimes the image of a person is reflected in them as a reflection of conscience. 12. Everyone hurries to their graves. 13. Instincts are terrible toys of the subconscious, there is a toy world that is developed at the expense of all lived lives, they call to have fun at the expense of oneself. Author: Musin Almat Zhumabekovich
Musin Almat Zhumabekovich.
And yet they obey and will continue to obey the orders that come to them. As in the famous Charge of the Light Brigade, these soldiers give up their lives, trusting that their commanders are using them well. While we sit safely here in these simulator rooms, playing an elaborate computer game, they are obeying, dying so that all of humankind can live.
Orson Scott Card (Ender's Shadow (Shadow, #1))
Slow doesn’t necessarily mean boring: if future life lives in a simulated world, its subjectively experienced flow of time need not have anything to do with the glacial pace at which the simulation is being run in the outside world, so the prospects of infinite computation could translate into subjective immortality for simulated
Max Tegmark (Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence)
Having had some experience as a sci-fi writer myself, I found Suddenly Paris to be a very nicely written, YA Sci-Fi novel that turns the story of THE MATRIX on its head. It explores the following question. What if, instead of being people trapped in a synthesized dream world, we only think we are real? The ethical and existential questions that go along with computer generated characters inside a simulation acquiring self-awareness without an awareness that they are living in a simulated world are dealt with in a very entertaining story. Enjoy.
Richard Phillips (The Rho Agenda Inception (3 Book Series))
that he lived in a universe whose complexity defied algorithmic simulation.
Neal Stephenson (Fall or, Dodge in Hell)
A mobile device adds rich contextual sensors and is aware of the world around it. Context is now much more than knowing where you are in an interface—it is where you are in a densely rich real-world environment. No longer is it enough to present a “map” of archived, published information. No longer is it enough to simulate a virtual world. The mobile device must be able to sense where a user is and facilitate actions situated in an immediate, living moment of experience defined by real places and times, by real states of being.
Frank Bentley (Building Mobile Experiences)
Without the gospel, our self-image is based on living up to some standards — either our own or someone else’s imposed on us. If we live up to those standards, we will be confident but not humble; if we don’t live up to them, we will be humble but not confident. Only in the gospel can we be both enormously bold and utterly sensitive and humble, for we are simul justus et peccator, both perfect and sinner!
Timothy J. Keller (Center Church: Doing Balanced, Gospel-Centered Ministry in Your City)
if we live in a simulated reality, we should expect to come across occasional ‘glitches’ or experimental results that we can’t repeat or even very slow drifts in the supposed constants and laws of Nature that we can’t explain.
Anonymous
Natural intelligence is a product of evolution. Therefore, by simulating biological evolution, we might expect to discover how living systems are propelled towards high-level intelligence.
Ifalaye Books (Artificial Intelligence: A Guide to Intelligent Systems)
...much of what you see “out there” is actually manufactured “in here” by your brain, painted in like computer-generated graphics in a movie. Only a small fraction of the inputs to your occipital lobe comes directly from the external world; the rest comes from internal memory stores and perceptual-processing modules (Raichle 2006). Your brain simulates the world—each of us lives in a virtual reality that’s close enough to the real thing that we don’t bump into the furniture.
Rick Hanson & Richard Mendius (Buddha's Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom)
However, from our present point of view, it is not clear that creating a human race is immoral.
Nick Bostrom (Are You Living In a Computer Simulation?)
The human brain can be compared to a modern flight simulator in several respects. Like a flight simulator, it constructs and continuously updates an internal model of external reality by using a continuous stream of input supplied by the sensory organs and employing past experience as a filter. It integrates sensory-input channels into a global model of reality, and it does so in real time. However, there is a difference. The global model of reality constructed by our brain is updated at such great speed and with such reliability that we generally do not experience it as a model. For us, phenomenal reality is not a simulational space constructed by our brains; in a direct and experientially untranscendable manner, it is the world we live in. Its virtuality is hidden, whereas a flight simulator is easily recognized as a flight simulator—its images always seem artificial. This is so because our brains continuously supply us with a much better reference model of the world than does the computer controlling the flight simulator. The images generated by our visual cortex are updated much faster and more accurately than the images appearing in a head-mounted display. The same is true for our proprioceptive and kinesthetic perceptions; the movements generated by a seat shaker can never be as accurate and as rich in detail as our own sensory perceptions.
Thomas Metzinger (The Ego Tunnel: The Science of the Mind and the Myth of the Self)
The 8 Basic Headers Work Family & Kids Spouse Health & Fitness Home Money Recreation & Hobbies Prospects for the Future Work The Boss Time Management Compensation Level of interest Co-workers Chances of promotion My Job Description Subordinates Family Relationship with spouse Relationship with children Relationship with extended family Home, chores and responsibilities Recreation & hobbies Money, expenses and allowances Lifestyle and standard of living Future planes and arrangements Spouse Communication type and intensity Level of independence Sharing each other's passions Division of roles and responsibilities Our time together Our planes for our future Decision making Love & Passion Health & Fitness General health Level of fitness Healthy lifestyle Stress factors Self awareness Self improvement Level of expense on health & fitness Planning and preparing for the rest of my life Home Comfort Suitability for needs Location Community and municipal services Proximity and quality of support/activity centers (i.e. school. Medical aid etc) Rent/Mortgage Repair / renovation Emotional atmosphere Money Income from work Passive income Savings and pension funds Monthly expenses Special expenses Ability to take advantage of opportunities / fulfill dreams Financial security / resilience Financial IQ / Understanding / Independent decision making Social, Recreation & Hobbies Free time Friends and social activity Level & quality of social ties Level of spending on S, R&H Culture events (i.e. theater, fairs etc) Space & accessories required Development over time Number of interests Prospect for the future Type of occupation Ratio of work to free time Promotion & Business development (for entrepreneurs) Health & Fitness Relationships Family and Home Financial security Fulfillment of vision / dreams  Creating Lenses with Excel If you wish to use Excel radar diagrams to simulate lenses, follow these steps: Open a new Excel spreadsheet.
Shmaya David (15 Minutes Coaching: A "Quick & Dirty" Method for Coaches and Managers to Get Clarity About Any Problem (Tools for Success Book 2))
We live in a simulated reality, craving an image that has no significance, cherishing the desire when there is no answer.
Leila Samarrai (Avanture Borisa K.)
Others reckoned that as long as the termination was instant, with no warning and therefore no chance that those about to be switched off could suffer, then it didn’t really matter. The wretches hadn’t existed, they’d been brought into existence for a specific, contributory purpose, and now they were nothing again; so what? Most people, though, were uncomfortable with such moral brusqueness, and took their responsibilities in the matter more seriously. They either avoided creating virtual populations of genuinely living beings in the first place, or only used sims at that sophistication and level of detail on a sustainable basis, knowing from the start that they would be leaving them running indefinitely, with no intention of turning the environment and its inhabitants off at any point. Whether these simulated beings were really really alive, and how justified it was to create entire populations of virtual creatures just for your own convenience under any circumstances, and whether or not – if/once you had done so – you were sort of duty-bound to be honest with your creations at some point and straight out tell them that they weren’t really real, and existed at the whim of another order of beings altogether – one with its metaphorical finger hovering over an Off switch capable of utterly and instantly obliterating their entire universe… well, these were all matters which by general and even relieved consent were best left to philosophers. As was the ever-vexing question, How do we know we’re not in a simulation? There
Iain M. Banks (The Hydrogen Sonata (Culture, #10))
Futuring,” says Bunyan, is based upon Hope. Hope is the force that propels us through life, giving us nourishment, purpose, and energy for our actions. Futuring causes us to question assumptions we make about life. Through the techniques of writing and sharing stories, creating images and participating in role-plays, we can simulate events as though we are already in the future. Our objective in such visualizations is not to predict the future, but to perceive potential futures in the here-and-now and to conceptualize what it will take to get from here to there.… There is no monopoly on futurism. Every person has the childlike ability to spontaneously create.6 At the 1992 futuring conference I created a vision of Detroit Youth in the year 2032. A record-breaking snow storm had occurred on the eve of the celebration of Martin Luther King’s 103rd birthday, I wrote, but people had no trouble getting to the celebration because young people, organized in Youth Block Clubs, had assumed the right and responsibility to keep the streets clean and safe for the community, especially elders. The vision goes on to describe how community work had been incorporated into the school curriculum, so that elementary schoolchildren working with elders were growing most of the food for the city while middle and high school students were doing most of the work of preparing and serving food in the community, and so on.7 Having that vision in my head and heart since the futuring conference has helped me time and again to project youth activities that transform young people at the same time that they improve the community.
Grace Lee Boggs (Living for Change: An Autobiography)
Consistent with this, computer simulations show that conditional cooperators who are a bit forgiving do better than individuals who hold grudges indefinitely, so long as they live in a world in which things don’t always go as planned. Chimps seems to follow this logic.
Joshua Greene (Moral Tribes: Emotion, Reason, and the Gap Between Us and Them)
That’s why all of those records from high school sound so good. It’s. It that the songs were better- it’s that we were listening to them with our friends, drunk for the first time on liqueurs, touching sweaty palms, staring for hours at a poster on the wall, not grossed out by carpet or dirt or crumpled, oily bedsheets. These songs and albums were the best ones because of how huge adolescence felt then, and how nostalgia recasts it now. Nostalgia is so certain: the sense of familiarity it instills makes us feel like we know ourselves, like we’ve lived. To get a sense that we have already journeyed through something- survived it, experienced it- is often so much easier and less messy than the task of currently living though something. Though hard to grasp, nostalgia is elating to bask in- temporarily restoring color to the past. It creates a sense memory that momentarily simulates context. Nostalgia is recall without the criticism of the present day, all the good parts, memory without the pain. Finally, nostalgia asks so little of us, just to be noticed and revisited; it doesn’t require the difficult task of negotiation, the heartache and uncertainty that the present does.
Carrie Brownstein (Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl)
How might you put this into practice? Here are a few things I’ve done repeatedly for 3 to 14 days at a time to simulate losing all my money: Sleeping in a sleeping bag, whether on my living room floor or outside Wearing cheap white shirts and a single pair of jeans for the entire 3 to 14 days Using CouchSurfing.com or a similar service to live in hosts’ homes for free, even if in your own city Eating only A) instant oatmeal and/or B) rice and beans Drinking only water and cheap instant coffee or tea Cooking everything using a Kelly Kettle. This is a camping device that can generate heat from nearly anything
Timothy Ferriss (Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers)
Superintelligence, Nick Bostrom estimates that 1058 human lives could be simulated with more conservative assumptions about energy efficiency. However we slice and dice these numbers, they’re huge, as is our responsibility for ensuring that this future potential of life to flourish isn’t squandered. As Bostrom puts it: “If we represent all the happiness experienced during one entire such life by a single teardrop of joy, then the happiness of these souls could fill and refill the Earth’s oceans every second, and keep doing so for a hundred billion billion millennia.
Max Tegmark (Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence)
Dharma Master Cheng Yen is a Buddhist nun living in Hualien County, a mountainous region on the east coast of Taiwan. Because the mountains formed barriers to travel, the area has a high proportion of indigenous people, and in the 1960s many people in the area, especially indigenous people, were living in poverty. Although Buddhism is sometimes regarded as promoting a retreat from the world to focus on the inner life, Cheng Yen took the opposite path. In 1966, when Cheng Yen was twenty-nine, she saw an indigenous woman with labor complications whose family had carried her for eight hours from their mountain village to Hualien City. On arriving they were told they would have to pay for the medical treatment she needed. Unable to afford the cost of treatment they had no alternative but to carry her back again. In response, Cheng Yen organized a group of thirty housewives, each of whom put aside a few cents each day to establish a charity fund for needy families. It was called Tzu Chi, which means “Compassionate Relief.” Gradually word spread, and more people joined.6 Cheng Yen began to raise funds for a hospital in Hualien City. The hospital opened in 1986. Since then, Tzu Chi has established six more hospitals. To train some of the local people to work in the hospital, Tzu Chi founded medical and nursing schools. Perhaps the most remarkable feature of its medical schools is the attitude shown to corpses that are used for medical purposes, such as teaching anatomy or simulation surgery, or for research. Obtaining corpses for this purpose is normally a problem in Chinese cultures because of a Confucian tradition that the body of a deceased person should be cremated with the body intact. Cheng Yen asked her volunteers to help by willing their bodies to the medical school after their death. In contrast to most medical schools, here the bodies are treated with the utmost respect for the person whose body it was. The students visit the family of the deceased and learn about his or her life. They refer to the deceased as “silent mentors,” place photographs of the living person on the walls of the medical school, and have a shrine to each donor. After the course has concluded and the body has served its purpose, all parts are replaced and the body is sewn up. The medical school then arranges a cremation ceremony in which students and the family take part. Tzu Chi is now a huge organization, with seven million members in Taiwan alone—almost 30 percent of the population—and another three million members associated with chapters in 51 countries. This gives it a vast capacity to help. After a major earthquake hit Taiwan in 1999, Tzu Chi rebuilt 51 schools. Since then it has done the same after disasters in other countries, rebuilding 182 schools in 16 countries. Tzu Chi promotes sustainability in everything it does. It has become a major recycler, using its volunteers to gather plastic bottles and other recyclables that are turned into carpets and clothing. In order to promote sustainable living as well as compassion for sentient beings all meals served in Tzu Chi hospitals, schools, universities, and other institutions are vegetarian.
Peter Singer (The Most Good You Can Do: How Effective Altruism Is Changing Ideas About Living Ethically)
Professional life requires that one live with the tension of using technology and remembering to distrust it.
Sherry Turkle (Simulation and Its Discontents)
I live the essence of living, while you spin your simulations of life in machines wrought by genius and lust. Your lies become truth, your way becomes lost, your frittered souls slip like sand through your fingers. Billions lost to the winds of time. You hold out the golden chalice, but it is empty. A rest stop on the way to nowhere. You sit on a bench, like a boy waiting in the rain for his lover to return, not knowing she’s already been crushed by the gears of your ambition.
Anonymous
Diablos: the name given to the igniting of, and ignited, farts. Trevor Hickey is the undisputed master of this arcane and perilous art. The stakes could not be higher. Get the timing even slightly wrong and there will be consequences far more serious than singed trousers; the word backdraught clamours unspoken at the back of every spectator’s mind. Total silence now as, with an almost imperceptible tremble (entirely artificial, ‘just part of the show’ as Trevor puts it) his hand brings the match between his legs and – foom! a sound like the fabric of the universe being ripped in two, counterpointed by its opposite, a collective intake of breath, as from Trevor’s bottom proceeds a magnificent plume of flame – jetting out it’s got to be nearly three feet, they tell each other afterwards, a cold and beautiful purple-blue enchantment that for an instant bathes the locker room in unearthly light. No one knows quite what Trevor Hickey’s diet is, or his exercise regime; if you ask him about it, he will simply say that he has a gift, and having witnessed it, you would be hard-pressed to argue, although why God should have given him this gift in particular is less easy to say. But then, strange talents abound in the fourteen-year-old confraternity. As well as Trevor Hickey, ‘The Duke of Diablos’, you have people like Rory ‘Pins’ Moran, who on one occasion had fifty-eight pins piercing the epidermis of his left hand; GP O’Sullivan, able to simulate the noises of cans opening, mobile phones bleeping, pneumatic doors, etc., at least as well as the guy in Police Academy; Henry Lafayette, who is double-jointed and famously escaped from a box of jockstraps after being locked inside it by Lionel. These boys’ abilities are regarded quite as highly by their peers as the more conventional athletic and sporting kinds, as is any claim to physical freakishness, such as waggling ears (Mitchell Gogan), unusually high mucous production (Hector ‘Hectoplasm’ O’Looney), notable ugliness (Damien Lawlor) and inexplicably slimy, greenish hair (Vince Bailey). Fame in the second year is a surprisingly broad church; among the two-hundred-plus boys, there is scarcely anyone who does not have some ability or idiosyncrasy or weird body condition for which he is celebrated. As with so many things at this particular point in their lives, though, that situation is changing by the day. School, with its endless emphasis on conformity, careers, the Future, may be partly to blame, but the key to the shift in attitudes is, without a doubt, girls. Until recently the opinion of girls was of little consequence; now – overnight, almost – it is paramount; and girls have quite different, some would go so far as to say deeply conservative, criteria with regard to what constitutes a gift. They do not care how many golf balls you can fit in your mouth; they are unmoved by third nipples; they do not, most of them, consider mastery of Diablos to be a feather in your cap – even when you explain to them how dangerous it is, even when you offer to teach them how to do it themselves, an offer you have never extended to any of your classmates, who would actually pay big money for this expertise, or you could even call it lore – wait, come back!
Paul Murray (Skippy Dies)
Based on the balancing act of the golden mean, bourgeois marriage mixed moderate but continuing sexual attraction, a mutual social and economic interest in living together, respect for the wife, a will to create a lineage, significant socio-cultural similarity, hypocrisy for dissimulating and managing adulterous liaisons (hence the importance of legal prostitution), and the building up of a patrimony to be transmitted. When the couple gets old, this leads to a habitual tenderness much stronger than the passionate and ephemeral simulation of today’s young couples.
Guillaume Faye (Sex and Deviance)
...I conducted a number of experiments to get in touch with my future self. Here are my favorite three: • Fire up AgingBooth. While hiring a programmer to create a 3-D virtual reality simulator is probably out of your price range, I personally love an app called AgingBooth, which transforms a picture of your face into what you will look like in several decades. There are also other apps like it, like Merrill Edge’s web app that shows you a live avatar of what you’ll look like at retirement (faceretirement.merilledge.com). AgingBooth is my favorite of them all, and it’s available for both Android and iOS, and it’s free. On the website for this book (productivityprojectbook.com), you can see what to expect out of the app—I’ve framed a picture of myself that hangs above my computer in my office, where I see it every day. Visitors are usually freaked out. • Send a letter to your future self. Like the letter I wrote at camp, writing and sending a letter to yourself in the future is a great way to bridge the gap between you and your future self. I frequently use FutureMe.org to send emails to myself in the future, particularly when I see myself being unfair to future me. • Create a future memory. I’m not a fan of hocus-pocus visualizations, so I hope this doesn’t sound like one. In her brilliant book The Wallpaper Instinct, Kelly McGonigal recommends creating a memory of yourself in the future—like one where you don’t put off a report you’re procrastinating on, or one where you read ten interesting books because you staved off the temptation of binge-watching three seasons of House of Cards on Netflix. Simply imagining a better, more productive version of yourself down the line has been shown to be enough to motivate you to act in ways that are helpful for your future self.
Chris Bailey (The Productivity Project: Accomplishing More by Managing Your Time, Attention, and Energy)
There are five assessment simulations; fear, frustration, anger, confusion and humiliation. The outcomes of which will determine the usefulness of each prisoner and how long they will be allowed to live.
Jill Thrussell (Robot : Colony 25 (Colony #1))
I see that both the living and the dead commute, riding their familiar trains. I am not, as you will have gathered, a person who needs false excitement, or simulated innovation. I am willing, though, to tear up the timetable and take some new routes; and I know I shall find, at some unlikely terminus, a hand that is meant to rest in mine.
Hilary Mantel (The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher)
Humanity is living in a virtual reality universe, a video game created by a civilization 1,000 to 100,000 years older than the human race. And they themselves are also simulations (virtual reality). These levels of hierarchies can extend to a vast degree above us, creating levels of gods or spirits.
Laurence Galian (Alien Parasites: 40 Gnostic Truths to Defeat the Archon Invasion!)
While the Archons cannot physically touchdown on Planet Earth, they can project their thoughts telepathically and their images holographically. They are experts in creating simulations of all kinds, inverting and distorting your perception and in this way, they create an Archontic Inversion. Archons are deceivers par excellence. They live in hive-like structures. They are more like robots than living beings, as they lack intentionality and imagination. In other words, they follow orders like an army of automatons.
Laurence Galian (Alien Parasites: 40 Gnostic Truths to Defeat the Archon Invasion!)
All things considered, what we look for in other people is perhaps the same gentle deterritorialization we look for in travel. The temptation of exile in the desire of another and of journey across that desire come to be substituted for one's own desire and for discovery. Often looks and amorous gestures already have the distance of exile, language expatriates itself into words which are afraid to mean, the body is like a hologram, gentle on the eyes and soft to the touch, and can thus easily be striated in all directions by desire like an aerial space. We move circumspectly within our emotions, passing from one to another, on a mental planet made up of convolutions. And we bring back the same transparent memories from our excesses and passions as we do from our travels. The more advanced life-simulation technology becomes, the more the question of the soul intervenes, perversely, as an accident. Everything becomes transformed into a pure, incessant production of accidents. From the moment we leave the world of substance and come to live in that of accident, perversion becomes normal and constitutive.
Jean Baudrillard (Cool Memories)
Training focuses on simulations. Coaching lives in the real world with real situations.
David Brock (Sales Manager Survival Guide: Lessons from Sales' Front Lines)
If the body is no longer a site of otherness but of identification, then we have urgently to become reconciled with it, repair it, perfect it, turn it into an ideal object. Everyone treats their bodies the way men treat women in projective identification: they invest them as a fetish, making an autistic cult of them, subjecting them to a quasi-incestuous manipulation. And it is the body's resemblance to its model which becomes a source of eroticism and 'white' seduction -- in the sense that it effects a kind of white magic of identity, as opposed to the black magic of otherness. This is how it is with body-building: you get into your body as you would into a suit of nerve and muscle. The body is not muscular, but muscled. It is the same with the brain and with social relations or exchanges: body-building, brainstorming, word-processing. Madonna is the ideal specimen of this, our muscled Immaculate Conception, our muscular angel who delivers us from the weaknesses of the body (pity the poor shade of Marilyn!). The sheath of muscles is the equivalent of character armour. In the past, women merely wrapped themselves in their image and their finery -- Freud speaks of those people who live with a kind of inner mirror, in a fleshly, happy self-reference. That narcissistic ideal is past and gone; body-building has wiped it out and replaced it with a gymnastic Ego-Ideal -- cold, hard, stressed, artificial self-reference. The construction of a double, of a physical and mental identity shell. Thus, in `body simulation', where you can animate your body remotely at any moment, the phantasy of being present in more than one body becomes an operational reality. An extension of the human being. And not a metaphorical or poetic extension, as in Pessoa's heteronyms, but quite simply a technical one.
Jean Baudrillard (The Perfect Crime)
Revolutionary theory also enshrined the living utopian hope that the State would wither away, and that the political sphere would negate itself as such, in the apotheosis of a finally transparent social realm. None of this has come to pass. The political sphere has disappeared, sure enough - but so far from doing so by means of a self-transcendence into the strictly social realm, it has carried that realm into oblivion with it. We are now in the transpolitical sphere; in other words, we have reached the zero point of politics, a stage which also implies the reproduction of politics, its endless simulation. For everything that has not successfully transcended itself can only fall prey to revivals without end. So politics will never finish disappearing - nor will it allow anything else to emerge in its place. A kind of hysteresis of the political reigns. Art has likewise failed to realize the utopian aesthetic of modern times, to transcend itself and become an ideal form of life. (In earlier times, of course, art had no need of self-transcendence, no need to become a totality, for such a totality already existed - in the shape of religion.) Instead of being subsumed in a transcendent ideality, art has been dissolved within a general aestheticization of everyday life, giving way to a pure circulation of images, a transaesthetics of banality. Indeed, art took this route even before capital, for if the decisive political event was the strategic crisis of 1929, whereby capital debouched into the era of mass trans politics, the crucial moment for art was undoubtedly that of Dada and Duchamp, that moment when art, by renouncing its own aesthetic rules of the game, debouched into the transaesthetic era of the banality of the image. Nor has the promised sexual utopia materialized. This was to have consisted in the self-negation of sex as a separate activity and its self-realization as total life. The partisans of sexual liberation continue to dream this dream of desire as a totality fulfilled within each of us, masculine and feminine at once, this dream of sexuality as an assumption of desire beyond the difference between the sexes. In point of fact sexual liberation has succeeded only in helping sexuality achieve autonomy as an undifferentiated circulation of the signs of sex. Although we are certainly in transition towards a transsexual state of affairs, this has nothing to do with a revolution of life through sex - and everything to do with a confusion and promiscuity that open the door to virtual indifference (in all senses of the word) in the sexual realm.
Jean Baudrillard (The Transparency of Evil: Essays in Extreme Phenomena)
People are obsessed with spectacle. We live in the society of the spectacle. People are addicted to the spectacular. They want bigger and better spectacles. They need more and more to keep them stimulated. They crave entertainment. They crave more powerful simulations, more breathtaking special effects, more everything. No one wants POR – plain old reality. Simulation – hyperreality – the simulacrum – these are what the people desire. We all live in Disneyland now – an utter fantasy world. Our true God is Mickey Mouse. At least he’s a lot nicer than Yahweh.
Adam Weishaupt (Hypersex)
The simulated perfection that surrounds us is mediated by screens. On every screen we look at it, perfection stares out at us. Screens are everywhere. We are always staring at screens. Cinema screens, TV screens, iPhone screens, computer screens… Screens are omnipresent in our lives. And they are the delivery mechanisms of perfect images of perfect lives. Celebrities, the nobility and the super rich are those with the perfect lives we so envy. They rule the screens.
Adam Weishaupt (Hypersex)
We learned that to lie to a machine, you don't need to be a perfect writer: rather, you need only believe that everything is a lie. If the world is not real, if everything we see is a simulation or a game, then the fictions we append to it are no different from the ones which come to us through our senses. And it is true: the odds, overwhelmingly, tell us that we exist inside a computer. Any universe that can support technological life probably will, given enough time. Any technological civilisation will develop modelling, and will in a comparatively insignificant span be able to model everything a planet-bound species could expect to encounter. That being the case, the simulation will rapidly reach the point where it contains simulated computers with the ability to simulate likewise everything a planet-bound species could expect to encounter, and so on and so on in an infinite regress limited only by computing power. That might seem like a hard limit, but processing power still doubles every twelve to eighteen months, and doubling is more extraordinary than people understand. There’s a story that the Emperor of China once lost his throne gambling with a peasant, because he agreed if he lost to pay a single grain of rice on the first square of a chess board and double the amount on each square on the next until he had covered the board. His debt for the final square was eighteen and a half million trillion grains. It is almost impossible to imagine the capabilities of a machine that much more powerful than the ones we have today, but I think we can accept it could hold quite a lot of simulations of our world. The odds, therefore, are negligible that we live in the origin universe, and considerable that we are quite a few steps down the layers of reality. Everything you know, everything you have ever seen or experienced, is probably not what it appears to be. The most alarming notion is that someone – or everyone – you know might be an avatar of someone a level up: they might know that you’re a game piece, that you’re invented and they are real. Perhaps that explains your sense of unfulfilled potential: you truly are incomplete, a semi-autonomous reflection of something vast. And yet, if so, what does that say about those vast ones beyond? Are they just replicating a truth they secretly recognise about themselves? Russian dolls, one inside the other, until the smallest doll embraces the outermost and everything begins again? Who really inhabits whom, and who is in control? None of this is as it appears.
Nick Harkaway (Gnomon)
We learned that to lie to a machine, you don't need to be a perfect liar: rather, you need only believe that everything is a lie. If the world is not real, if everything we see is a simulation or a game, then the fictions we append to it are no different from the ones which come to us through our senses. And it is true: the odds, overwhelmingly, tell us that we exist inside a computer. Any universe that can support technological life probably will, given enough time. Any technological civilisation will develop modelling, and will in a comparatively insignificant span be able to model everything a planet-bound species could expect to encounter. That being the case, the simulation will rapidly reach the point where it contains simulated computers with the ability to simulate likewise everything a planet-bound species could expect to encounter, and so on and so on in an infinite regress limited only by computing power. That might seem like a hard limit, but processing power still doubles every twelve to eighteen months, and doubling is more extraordinary than people understand. There’s a story that the Emperor of China once lost his throne gambling with a peasant, because he agreed if he lost to pay a single grain of rice on the first square of a chess board and double the amount on each square on the next until he had covered the board. His debt for the final square was eighteen and a half million trillion grains. It is almost impossible to imagine the capabilities of a machine that much more powerful than the ones we have today, but I think we can accept it could hold quite a lot of simulations of our world. The odds, therefore, are negligible that we live in the origin universe, and considerable that we are quite a few steps down the layers of reality. Everything you know, everything you have ever seen or experienced, is probably not what it appears to be. The most alarming notion is that someone – or everyone – you know might be an avatar of someone a level up: they might know that you’re a game piece, that you’re invented and they are real. Perhaps that explains your sense of unfulfilled potential: you truly are incomplete, a semi-autonomous reflection of something vast. And yet, if so, what does that say about those vast ones beyond? Are they just replicating a truth they secretly recognise about themselves? Russian dolls, one inside the other, until the smallest doll embraces the outermost and everything begins again? Who really inhabits whom, and who is in control? None of this is as it appears.
Nick Harkaway (Gnomon)
the creek is a reminder that we do not live in a simulation—a streamlined world of products, results, experiences, reviews—but rather on a giant rock whose other life-forms operate according to an ancient, oozing, almost chthonic logic.
Jenny Odell (How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy)
Therefore, so long as we live in this fallen world, we are simul iustus et peccator (saint and sinner simultaneously), until the destruction of the "old Adam" is completed as God makes all things new (Rev. 21:5; Isa. 42:9; 43:19; Gal. 6:15).
Fleming Rutledge (The Crucifixion: Understanding the Death of Jesus Christ)
Chess simulates a truth that we tend to suppress, namely that life is hazardous and we are always at risk. The game is fun but is not entirely innocent fun which is why we tend to reach for chess metaphors in tense situations with high stakes. Love for instance, is a tense situation with high stakes. Or at least it can be. Historically various works of art and literature associate chess with courtly love and by extension with love in general. However chess is a metaphor for love not because the players long for each another or want to knock down the pieces and make out on the board - though there is of course a time and place for that. The link between chess and love is much more oblique. The spirit of eros permeates the game in the forms of suffering and passion that characterise unrequited and unconsummated romantic love ... And shared attention of any process of co creation is a rare and profoundly intimate process. In fact the intimacy we feel through shared attention may be an unconscious emotional driver that keeps us coming back to the game. Moreover, chess thinking in some ways entails compassion because it is about cultivating order through chaos through caring about the felt significance of particular pieces and squares and ideas and outcomes … Caring is a fundamental feature of being in the world … Controlling for all other variables, those given a potted plant to look after consistently lived longer than those who were not.
Jonathan Rowson (The Moves That Matter: A Chess Grandmaster on the Game of Life)
The high point of the struggle against domination was the historic movement of liberation, be it political, sexual or otherwise - a continuous movement, with guiding ideas and visible actors. But liberation also occurred with exchanges and markets, which brings us to this terrifying paradox: all of the liberation fights against domination only paved the way for hegemony, the reign of general exchange -against which there is no possible revolution, since everything is already liberated.
Jean Baudrillard (The Agony of Power)
Gandhi always said that he wanted to live like the poorest of the poor. The question is, can poverty be simulated? Poverty, after all, is not just a question of having no money or no possessions. Poverty is about having no power.
Arundhati Roy (The Doctor and the Saint: The Ambedkar-Gandhi Debate: Caste, Race and Annihilation of Caste)
It is the same with text, with any 'virtual' text (the Internet, word-processing): you work on it like a computer-generated image, which no longer bears any relation to the transcendence of the gaze or of writing. At any rate, as soon as you are in front of the screen, you no longer see the text as a text, but as an image. Now, it is in the strict separation of text and screen, of text and image, that writing is an activity in its own right, never an interaction. Similarly, it is only with the strict separation of stage and auditorium that the spectator is an actor in his/her own right. Everything today conspires to abolish that separation: the immersion of the spectator in the spectacle, 'living theatre', 'happenings' The spectacle becomes user-friendly, interactive. The apogee of spectacle or its end? When everyone is an actor, there is no action any longer, no scene. It's the death of the spectator as such. The end of the aesthetic illusion.
Jean Baudrillard (The Intelligence of Evil or the Lucidity Pact)
Do you think they’ll ever be a place for us? I mean, do you think there’s a place for someone who lives under the radar, someone who has to pretend, someone who is a spy?” “Yes.” Daly said it with such confidence that I sat up in my bed, my cast dangling over the edge. “How do you know?” I asked. “There has to be. I don’t usually philosophize, but I do know one thing.” “What’s that?” “That even when we’re pretending, even when we’re hiding under wigs or accents or clothes that aren’t our style, we can’t hide our nature. Just like I knew from the moment I met you that you would choose this life. And just like I knew, when you told me about this mission, that you would agree to help the CIA find this girl. You would sacrifice yourself and your time with your brother to save someone. It’s just who you are.” “I’ve already messed things up, Daly. What if I’m not good enough? What if I can’t do it?” “That’s the thing, though. You’ll find a way.” I lay back again and buried the side of my face into my pillow. “I’m just not sure how.” “If you continue to think as you’ve always thought, you’ll continue to get what you’ve always got,” Daly said. I considered that. I wasn’t ready to give up. At least not yet. “That one is Itosu wisdom, in case you wondered.” I yawned into the phone. “It’s good advice.” “I’ll let you go. You should be resting. Don’t you have school in the morning?” He said the last part in a teasing tone. “Yeah, if I make it through another day at school. Maybe they’ll get rid of me—kick me out or something. You’d think I would have inherited some of my mom’s artistic genius.” “Can I give you one last bit of advice, Alex?” “Sure.” “Throw it all out the window.” “What?” I stared at my open window. A slight breeze blew the gauzelike drapes in and out as if they were a living creature. “Everything you’ve learned about art, the lines, the colors, the pictures in your head from other artists—just throw it all out. And throw out everything you’ve learned from books and simulations about being a good spy. Don’t try to be like someone else. Don’t force yourself to follow a set of rules that weren’t meant for you. Those work for 99.99% of the people.” “You’re telling me I’m the .01%?” I asked skeptically. “No, I’m telling you you’re not even on the scale.” Daly’s soft breathing traveled through the phone line. “With a mind like yours, you can’t be put in a box. Or even expected to stand outside it. You were never meant to hold still, Alex. You have to stack all the boxes up and climb and keep climbing until you find you. I’m just saying that Alexandra Stewart will find her own way.” The cool night air brushed the skin of my arm and I wished it was Daly’s hand instead. “You sure have a lot of wisdom tonight,” I told him. I expected him to laugh. Instead, the line went silent for a moment. “Because I’m not there. Because I wish I was.” His words were simple, but his message reached inside my heart and left a warmth—a warmth I needed. “Thank you, James.” “Take care, Alex.” I wanted to say more, to keep him at my ear just a little longer. Yet the words itching to break free couldn’t be said from over two thousand miles away. They needed to happen in person. I wasn’t going home until I found Amoriel. Which meant I had to complete this mission. Not just for Amoriel anymore. I had to do it for me. (page 143)
Robin M. King (Memory of Monet (Remembrandt, #3))
It is essential to consider as a constant point of reference in this essay the regular hiatus between what we fancy we know and what we really know, practical assent and simulated ignorance which allows us to live with ideas which, if we truly put them to the test, ought to upset our whole life. Faced with this inextricable contradiction of the mind, we shall fully grasp the divorce separating us from our own creations. So long as the mind keeps silent in the motionless world of its hopes, everything is reflected and arranged in the unity of its nostalgia. But with its first move this world cracks and tumbles: an infinite number of shimmering fragments is offered to the understanding. We must despair of ever reconstructing the familiar, calm surface which would give us peace of heart. After so many centuries of inquiries, so many abdications among thinkers, we are well aware that this is true for all our knowledge. With the exception of professional rationalists, today people despair of true knowledge. If the only significant history of human thought were to be written, it would have to be the history of its successive regrets and its impotences.
Albert Camus (The Myth of Sisyphus)