TL:DR Scroll down to see the action list of things
So EL said that Atlas’ first and foremost interest is understanding reality itself… and this is a theme that can spin off in many different directions… I really do feel we need some structure here, but regardless; understanding reality is really the key for this ARG as I interpret things as of today…
Atlas Network consists of scientists and computer programmers (right?) who are all working under the assumption that a self-aware and technology based ”intelligence” is a possibility… but how does that belief link into the overall goal of understanding reality? Actually, AI was only ever mentioned in that question in the survey and hasn’t been mentioned elsewhere within wakingtitan, or did I overlook something?
Anyway, if ”reality” was an object that you could place in a box in order to investigate its properties from ”the outside”, you would likely run simulations from outside of that box in order to understand the contents of the box better… a little bit like ”look, we have this enormously complex reality inside this black box, and we’re seeing how all bits and pieces interact with each other and work together, but it’s very hard to see how one individual parameter affects the system as a whole, due to the system’s complexity”. (this links to Probabilistic computing?)
The purpose of a simulation could then be to ”keep all system parameters constant and only change the characteristics (input values) of one particular variable or parameter at a time”.
By tweaking Napoleon’s characteristics within this world, we could observe how reality as a whole – in its essence – would change. Thus get a grip on the individual components of ”reality”.
This is the classical scientific method. Does it work here?
Right of the bat one would object that the observer is part of the reality it wants to observe. Even if we would run ”simulations”, the results of those simulations would be observed and interpreted by minds who are part of the very same reality they are trying to observe.
What would create an opening here, however, is that Atlas seem to have verified the existence of two major so-far only postulated ideas in sexy modern physics: the many-world theory of quantum mechanics, and the faster-than-light speed communication (i.e. tachyons).
So, my understanding of this whole Atlas Network thingy, is that within what we call reality (i.e. all that exists), there are several branches in both time and space, and they found ways in which these different branches can communicate with each other.
So if we have several reality branches, following the quantum mechanical idea of many-worlds, and if we know how to travel backwards (and forwards?) in time, we have a situation where any possible outcome type world is available to us at any given time.
Roko’s Basilisk could be a player here, since if we once were to create a true AI, then it could go back in time to haunt us and yada yada. However, Stephen Hawking once said that the ultimate proof that time-travel will never be achieved is that we never saw anyone from the future yet. But ok. Anyway, this could be a way in which Superlumina got carried away or messed things up for themselves and others I guess…
This leaves us with a few summarized themes for the next phases of waking titan:
We need to
- Define what it means to ”study reality”
1.1) Physics: Many-worlds (multiverse) and Many-times (echo, superlumina)
1.2) Spirituality: Questions about ”who am I”, ”understanding me as a conceptual construct”, ”does the perceived have any existence if there is no perceiver”
- Propose a way to actually carry out these studies
2.1) If modelling through simulations, then how should these simulations be designed?
2.1.1) Probabilistic computing
2.1.2) Peanut-butter and jam?
2.2) Following developments of Elizabeth and others
2.3) Understanding No Man’s Sky role in all of this
- Effects on Atlas and societal implications
3.1) Urgent: Emily is gone – how did she disappear and why?
3.2) Elizabeth turns to us for our expertise, why?
3.3) Origin of garbled messages, wrong date on website, and ”infinite loop”
3.4) AI: Roko’s Basilisk and otherwise (is Atlas working on that?)
3.5) All sorts of ways that Superlumina plays a part in 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4
3.6) Atlas as a business idea. Who is their backer? Elon Musk? Why?