Related to: A Much Better Life?
Reply to: Why No Wireheading?
The Sales Conversation
Sales girl: Our Much-Better-Life Simulator™ is going to provide the most enjoyable life you could ever experience.
Customer: But it is a simulation, it is fake. I want the real thing, I want to live my real life.
Sales girl: We accounted for all possibilities and determined that the expected utility of your life outside of our Much-Better-Life Simulator™ is dramatically lower.
Customer: You don't know what I value and you can't make me value what I don't want. I told you that I value reality over fiction.
Sales girl: We accounted for that as well! Let me ask you how much utility you assign to one hour of ultimate well-being™, where 'ultimate' means the best possible satisfaction of all desirable bodily sensations a human body and brain is capable of experiencing?
Customer: Hmm, that's a tough question. I am not sure how to assign a certain amount of utility to it.
Sales girl: You say that you value reality more than what you call 'fiction'. But you nonetheless value fiction, right?
Customer: Yes of course, I love fiction. I read science fiction books and watch movies like most humans do.
Sales girl: Then how much more would you value one hour of ultimate well-being™ by other means compared to one hour of ultimate well-being™ that is the result of our Much-Better-Life Simulator™?
Customer: If you ask me like that, I would exchange ten hours in your simulator with one hour of real satisfaction, something that is the result of an actual achievement rather than your fake.
Sales girl: Thank you. Would you agree if I said that for you one hour outside, that is 10 times less satisfying, roughly equals one hour in our simulator?
Customer: Yes, for sure.
Sales girl: Then you should buy our product. Not only is it very unlikely for you to experience even a tenth of ultimate well-being™ that we offer more than a few times per year, but our simulator delivers and allows your brain to experience 20 times more perceptual data than you would be able to experience outside of our simulator. All this at a constant rate while experiencing ultimate well-being™. And we offer free upgrades that are expected to deliver exponential speed-ups and qualitative improvements for the next few decades.
Customer: Thanks, but no thanks. I rather enjoy the real thing.
Sales girl: But I showed you that our product easily outweighs the additional amount of utility you expected to experience outside of our simulator.
Customer: You just tricked me into this utility thing, I don't want to buy your product. Please leave me alone now.