(Sorry for taking so long between replies - my account logs out automatically and I never remember to log back in)Yes, that's close to what I'm saying. When watching a movie, we have the ability to "almost-forget" the real world to become immersed in it. In red-pill world, you can do this but cranked up to 11, you literally forget everything so that it all feels way more exciting, whether good or bad. You retain all memories afterwards. And yes, outer-you already chose, but I consider inner-you to be a different person, so the question is still meaningful for me (both will merge if you redpill, like when you wake up from a dream, so it's not suicide either).But yeah, it's less of a serious question that needs an answer, and more of an existential horror story. It conveys the idea of the world not being balanced like a videogame, but in an unusual direction. We usually struggle with the endlessness of the obstacles that are in the way of our goals; but imagining that all the obstacles suddenly end and all the goals are trivially reachable, like activating god-mode in a game, is a different kind of terrifying.
I'm not sure I understand what you're trying to say. Do you think Morpheus may be lying, and/or that this world is so bad that a boring one is better? In that case you're free to go see the real world, but you're free to come back to this world (or another simulated world that you like better) at any time. It's more exciting if you think that the blue/red pill decision is one-in-a-lifetime, but more realistically it'd be set up so that you can go in and out as you please (with the obvious caveats of "you don't remember the real world", like in dreams), with the same role as a movie or a game.Okay, let me flesh it out a bit more: There isn't much to do or discover or fix or protect. Everything is pretty much done. All universal truths are in a 500-page book, which you first read in full at age 15, and understood completely at age 19. Any societal change/revolution would demonstrably bring forth more suffering than happiness. History is 200 years old, and not much has happened since year 157, when we finished mapping the human brain. Some of the first humans are still alive and can tell you what happened just like I can tell you what I had for lunch (or you can experience it yourself in you want). You can understand another human being in full after a 10-minute session of mind-sharing, and the differences between human minds are subjectively of about 10% at most. You can have sex with whoever you want to (after mind-sharing, of course), but natural sex is about as pleasurable as a chocolate cookie. A Friendly AI was built, and it decided to shut itself down because helping us would only deplete the last reserves of fun in the universe, and it didn't want to make us dumber or orgasmium. In short, any goal that you can think of, is either provably undesirable, or it can be accomplished in one day at most. More intelligence doesn't help. We were the Singularity. To us, the world is a medium-dificulty Minesweeper board, that has already been solved. The game wasn't difficulty-scaled to the player, but this time it went into the "too easy" direction (like that one Eliezer short story, but for everything).What do you even do all day in such a world? What everyone does is superstimulate their brain in various ways. And if you put all those superstimuli together, you get the most popular experience: Earth. Full of dangers, pleasures and mysteries. Kill or be killed. Amass wealth or starve to death. Overthrow cruel governments, or live a life of oppression. Mind-blowing sex awaits you, but you will need to seduce these impossibly sexy people... by using only your words! Take the craziness up to 11 with drugs! Discover profoundly weird science. Explore this vast, unknown universe that you can never visit in full. What's behind the horizon? Who knows! Let's find out! The clock is running! You have 80 years.
It's not even a pun, "rational numbers" are also called that because they can be written as ratios. A lot of people seem to be wanting to change the name, but I think that's a funny rationalist bias with the word. I work with maths quite a bit and I picked it up instantly. Then again, that could be a maths bias, but I think the average person has heard "rational numbers" more often than "Rationalism" (meaning LessWrong Rationalism). I think rational breaks is actually one of the best names you can give them, along with "fractional".
Okay, now I NEED to know about that universe which doesn't run on math.
Also, the premise for the LOTR one is awesome, did anyone ever expand on it?
It seems to me like you guys are equating "natural death is no longer a thing" with "death and suffering are also no longer a thing". People commit suicide every day, and they have suffered for mere years or decades. Imagine all the trauma and suffering you could accumulate in centuries. It only takes to make the decision once, and it is final.
If someone is perfectly happy for 279 years and then they get a streak of bad luck for 2 years (say, a war), that may very well be too much suffering for their untrained mind, and they may want to just switch it off. How many outlived friends/daughters/true loves would it take to make you at least consider it?
I'm not saying I'd do it, just that it probably wouldn't be that rare, given that there's probably no possible cure for non-natural death.
Funny, the other day I was thinking of this, but from the other side: What if we've already taken the pill?
Imagine Morpheus comes to you and reveals that the world we live in is fake, and most of the new science is simulated to make it more fun. Real mechanics is just a polished version of Newton's (pretty much Lagrangian/Hamiltonian mechanics). There is no such thing as a speed limit in the universe. Instantaneous travel to every point of the universe is possible, and has already been done. No aliens either (not that it would be impossible, we just happen to be the first). Quantum mechanics isn't real either. The more accurate model of the atom is Thomson's, and there isn't much more beyond that. Chemistry is not very different from our own, somehow (sorry, I don't know chemistry). People live without much difficulty or suffering, there aren't any wars, and people are not so irrational. But everything (and everyone) is so heart-wrenchingly boring that we mostly decided to go live more exciting lives.So... Blue pill, or red pill?
Can I find the article somewhere else? Link is dead now
It's been 13 years, what's the feedback?
Foolish mortal, the Quantitative Way is beyond your comprehension, and the beliefs you lightly name ‘certain’ are less assured than the least of our mighty hypotheses.
Have you considered selling merch? I'm infinitely certain I'd buy a T-shirt with that quote.