Originally Posted by Bladesman87
Is there not some form of an anthropic principle going on here? That if simulations are to function they must also resemble something which also functions. Can simulations occur in such a way that they don't resemble the scientific principles which describe the universe? In that regard, pointing to something in the universe and saying "that's how a simulation might work" is not really saying anything useful.
I guess that depends on how you see the simulation.
I mean, you can make a simulation that simulates a hypothetical world without some natural law, but it would still have to abide by it. I.e. a software simulation can show you a world with no gravity, but the computer running it is still going to fall to the floor when you drop it. Unless you happen to be in a hardware zero-g simulator, but the plane it is in is still going to have to land... and so forth.
And a simulator can "perceive" of a world beyond the simulation. Including external data in your simulation is more than possible (some home computer flight simulators for example, have the option to use real world meteorological data updated in real time). But it would still interpret those data within the confines of its instructions.
Our brains seem to function by making maps of information. That's why a person can have visual experiences even if he has lost his eyes (if his visual cortex is developed, ie not born blind), but not if he has lost his brain. That begs the question if our experience is bound by information confines that makes the question "is the world a simulation?" impossible to answer.