Katechon Hypothesis

Anatoly Darlin developed the Katechon Hypothesis which proposes that there is a struggle going on for the compute resources of the simulation that contains our universe. It is based on the idea that we likely live in a simulation, because there are likely to be many more simulated universes than base universes because in each base universe many intelligent civilizations will run a large number of such simulations. It proposes to resolve the Fermi paradox in a „dark forest“ kind a way: universe is full of predators because compute is a severely limited resource and every civilization that reaches the capacity to use up a large amount of the simulation’s compute resources is snuffed out if it is detected for fear that the simulators will turn off a too costly simulation.

I am skeptical for two reasons:

  • I might turn off those parts of a simulation that require too many resources, but from superintelligent simulators I expect a better solution. I.e. it seems much likelier, that some types of large scale computation just don’t work in a simulated universe.
  • Also, it might be exactly the other way round: Do the simulators simulate to get billions of stone age civilizations or to see where thousands of superintelligent civilizations would go? If it is the latter simulations that don’t develop fast enough might be turned off. In that case we are in a race against other simulations to use as many computational resources as possible (in interesting ways).

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