Re: virus: Re:virtuality

David McFadzean (
Fri, 3 Jan 1997 01:20:58 -0700

> From: Alex Williams <>
> Date: Tuesday, December 31, 1996 7:35 AM

> We need to distinguish between `memetics,' the field of the study of
> memes and `memetics,' the actual environment of memes hosted by one or
> more entities. I, following Atkins' lead, have been refering to the
> latter as `memesphere' in the past and it seems to cut down on
> confusion.

The ideosphere is the realm where memes live, by analogy with biosphere.
I guess this is a slightly difference sense than what you are describing
because it is not localized to any individuals.

I think the following is from jonesr, though Mr. Williams didn't
bother to attribute the quote (hint, hint):
> > There would also be a group of people who would be thinking "Hmmm, OK,
> > inside this virtual world, generated by a computer. Can we do any of
> > following:

I've created simulations populated by virtual beings who weren't smart
enought to contemplate these questions (having only a few dozen neurons)
but here is how I would answer for them:

> > 1) Escape into the 'real' world?

Possible, but it would require outside intervention to "upload" them
into, say, a real robot.

> > 2) Move into other virtual worlds if they exist?

Again, possible, with outside intervention (deus cut'n'paste) or if
the world was created with conduits to other worlds (like Tom Ray's
proposed distributed Tierra system).

> > 3) Change the programme for our own world?

Only if the world was set up that way. In a sense they already do to
the extent that they are not really separate from the simulation, so
everything they do changes the program (by, for instance, depleting
resources or affecting the behaviour of their cohabitants).

> > 4) Create our own 'perfect' world to live in?"

I don't think "perfect" worlds are a coherent concept. However if
they get smart enough, they can create their own simulations and
upload into them. Maybe, as many have mentioned, we already have
done just that.

David McFadzean       
Memetic Engineer      
Church of Virus