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Oh Joyous Pokernight

To: poker-night
From: electroblake
Subject: Oh Joyous Pokernight
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2007 20:03:51 -0400

In the event that you find yourself living in a simulated world, the
experts agree that the best thing for you to do is to make yourself
as interesting as possible to the being monitoring the simulation.
The theory being that if you are interesting enough, the being may
decide they want to keep you around and will put you in into future
simulations as well. It is unclear if you will retain any of your
memories from this simulation if you do happen to be copied over, but
the nature vs. nurture argument would suggest that at least some of
your interestingness has to do with your life experiences and
therefore your memories, so it would stand to reason that if you were
copied it would be to the benefit of the being running the
simulation’s entertainment to have you keep at least some subset of
your memories.

There are many cultures that have long held that when a creature dies
they will be reincarnated, and that their actions in this life
dictate the type of creature you will be reincarnated into. It is,
however, far from common to find that a newborn child has a complete
set of life memories. You might suppose that a simulation
sophisticated enough to fool several billion humans would also be
capable of supplying very similar stimuli to a new human child as the
previous incarnation had been exposed to, thus creating a human adult
very similar to the one it had been copied from. Then again, it may
also be a fun entertainment to alter the variables a little bit every
time. How would Gandhi turn out if he had been raised in a Mormon
extremist cult settlement in the Utah desert, for example? What if
Richard Nixon were raised by drunk astronauts? These are questions a
bored history buff with a copy of the latest civilization simulator
might take it upon themselves to answer. There are countless PhD
theses to be written on the effects of slightly alcoholic well water
in roman villages or the effect of a God who pays attention. There
are millions of ways to fuck around with civilization when you’ve got
the power to do whatever the fuck you want.

In terms of surviving as an individual in a simulation, being
interesting and a desirable character in the simulated world you find
yourself in is probably a good idea, but it seems unlikely that when
your life here ends you will wake up clutching your mama’s breasts
sucking down the life milk of another world. It just doesn’t seem
like it would work out well.

If anything, the best a simulated person can likely hope for is to be
copied over to some kind of holding simulation the being running the
simulation runs specifically for holding characters they find
interesting. This could take the form of a world where all babies
are born with a full set of memories. This could be a fun game, as
the being running the simulation would need to maintain an
environment where the individuals involved are comfortable with the
idea of giving birth to complete strangers, who might emerge from the
womb cursing and swearing as they have likely just been stabbed in
the heart six times by the ring leader of a gang of prostitutes or
just died after surviving an experimental aircraft crash only to
struggle through the desert for six hours searching for water,
getting eaten alive by bugs and bitten by snakes and desert wombats.
Could be interesting. Or it could be very much like the popular
vision of heaven, where everyone gets to wear clean white robes and
sleep on clouds and there’s nothing to do all day but drink the
finest of liquors and have sex with beautiful strangers and you’re
never hung over and you don’t have to go to a stupid job in the
morning – but you do have to accept that you and your world were
Created by The Being and you will live in this paradise only so long
as the plug doesn’t get pulled on the whole thing or until The Being
gets a girlfriend and forgets about the whole thing.

It could also be the cases that when you die, you’ll open your eyes
again, squint through the smoke, take a long pull on your cigarette,
gulp down a gin and tonic, and raise the bet two dollars because
somehow you find yourself once again at

at dangerhouse

“first hand at nine”

dangerhouse is XX xxxxxxxxx xx #X in simulated somerville.

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