Now, a team of physicists at the University of Washington has created a potential test to see if we are indeed living in a computer simulation. However, it will be decades before technology reaches the point where even primitive simulations of the universe are viable. The UW team has theorized tests, however, that can be performed now or in the near future that would be sensitive to constraints imposed by the limited resources and technological abilities of such primitive simulations.
Martin Savage, UW physics professor, says that current supercomputers can simulate only a very small portion of the universe, on the scale of one 100-trillionth of a meter, a little larger than the nucleus of an atom, using a technique called lattice quantum chromodynamics and starting from the fundamental physical laws that govern the universe.
Though our potential to create larger simulations – the size of a molecule, then a cell and eventually a human being – is growing, many generations of computing power growth are necessary before a large enough simulation can be created to allow us to understand the constraints on the physical processes that would indicate we are living in a computer model.
Savage said, however, signatures of resource constraints in present-day simulations are likely to exist as well in simulations in the distant future. These constraints include the imprint of an underlying lattice if one is used to model the space-time continuum.
Is It Possible To Find Out If We Are Living In A Computer Simulation?