What we’ve learned so far – recapping parts 1 & 2

In Part 1

  1. I outlined the simulation hypothesis: The idea that we’re living in a simulation.
  2. We learned that systems are monitored and have alerts set up to distinguish signal from noise. It’s usually statistical anomalies which trigger these alerts.
  3. I outlined the idea of a message being hidden in the mathematical ratio Pi from a book I’d read called ‘Contact’.

In Part 2

  1. I provided an example of a message from outer space the Earth had received as part of the SETI program – the Wow! Message.

In this article, I’ll try to draw those concepts together alongside the trivial example of Pac Man, and see if we can’t save the human race and extract ourselves from the simulation.

How Pac Man can help

Pac Man is the bestselling video game of all time. 300,000 units have been shifted. Importantly, those games are held in every country of the world.

Here’s how we can use the information I’ve outlined to procure an escape.

First, we reprogram Pac Man. We give him the best cloud computing facilities available. He’s still 8 Bit in appearance but, when we decide, we allow him to ‘break out’ of his game and talk to us, augmenting his code with the latest AI chatbot software (which I suspect will require a few more bytes of processing power). From an AI perspective, we give him the good stuff, that which has come closest to passing The Turing Test.

To whatever degree we can, we give Pac Man the ability to answer those questions. How does he feel about our belief that Ghosts aren’t real? About the fact we eat meat, not dots, about the fact that doors in our world lead to new rooms?

Globally, we allow 300,000 Pac Men to wake. Here’s why that will be useful.

An unusual day

We pick a day. For one day, every person in every country in the world (every one with a Pac Man machine that is) stops work. At a pre-agreed GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) we start playing Pac Man. All of us.

Later, we let Pac Man escape his 8 bit environment and then we talk to him for an hour. He uses his new AI skills to tell us who he is and what he thinks.

Then we stop, look up, and say nothing.

This plan IS a statistical anomaly

It doesn’t actually matter what we do. Like the Wow message, or the coded communication embedded in Pi, to garner the attention of the scientists observing our Simulated System, we must meet only one condition. What we do simply has to be a statistically significant deviation from what we usually do.

It need only be behaviour which is different enough from what usually happens on our (‘simulated’?) Earth, that this day, this signal, stands out discernibly from the noise we usually generate.

The goal is that our behavior on Pac Man Day be something that will cause a realisation that something ‘weird is happening’ in in the ‘real’ world, alerting the person who is monitoring that they need to investigate.

Whoever is running these simulations is running them for a reason. They’ll be monitoring us just as we monitor our own experiment systems. They watch us in the same way we watch Pac Man.

Let me say that again in a slightly different way. To restate and underline the point: We just need to be the simulated world (one of many) in which our behaviour on that day is so not normal (stands out from the noise) that a red light flashes or a klaxon sounds and some scientist tuts and says ‘OK. I’ll go check.’

I put it to you that the entire world playing Pac Man for a day, instead of following our consumer plodding, would exceed that mathematical threshold.

There is elegance here, too

And then, when they (the scientists monitoring the systems in the real world) check, they see a situation which has an elegant element to it. We let our simulation out of his own box. We created Pac Man for our own purposes. And now we’ve freed him to the best of our ability. We are showing, in a humorous way, that we understand. That we’d do the same thing if we were them. We’d let the rat out of the maze.

The whole planet is looking up in unison prepared to engage with whoever is running things – just as we did with the less complex ‘lifeform’ we created, Pac Man.

In Conclusion: Leaving the simulation

The Pac Man plan is a simple solution. The point is only to suggest a single version of the general plan. Any solution which triggers ‘an abnormal’ mathematical threshold which triggers an alarm requiring investigation in the real world would be enough.