Could a new law of physics support the idea we're living in a computer simulation?

A physicist at the University of Portsmouth has investigated whether the highly contested idea that humans are only characters in a sophisticated virtual world may be supported by a new rule of physics.

According to the idea of the simulated universe, people are constructions in their own artificial reality, which is like to a computer simulation.

The hypothesis, which contends that physical reality is essentially composed of bits of information, is well-liked by a number of well-known people, including Elon Musk, and in the field of information physics.

According to earlier studies by Dr. Melvin Vopson, information is thought to have mass and all basic particles—the tiniest known components of the universe—store information about themselves in a manner akin to that of human DNA.

He identified a new rule of physics in 2022 that might forecast genetic alterations in organisms—including viruses—and assist in assessing the possible ramifications of those mutations.

Its foundation is the second rule of thermodynamics, which states that the two possible outcomes for entropy, a measure of disorder in an isolated system, are growth or stagnation.

Dr. Vopson discovered that, contrary to his initial expectations, the entropy in information systems either stays constant or reduces as these systems evolve. At that point, he developed the second law of information dynamics, or infodynamics, which has the potential to have a big influence on the study of evolution and genetics.

The scientific effects of the new rule on several different physical systems and contexts, including as biology, atomic physics, and cosmology, are examined in a recent work that was published in AIP Advances.

Dr. Vopson, who teaches mathematics and physics at the university, stated, "I recognized right once that this discovery had broad ramifications for many other scientific fields.

"What I wanted to do next is put the law to the test and see if it could further support the simulation hypothesis by moving it on from the philosophical realm to mainstream science."

Important conclusions consist of:

Biological systems: Genetic mutations are thought to follow a pattern determined by information entropy, although the second rule of infodynamics casts doubt on this theory. This finding has significant ramifications for several disciplines, including pharmacology, virology, genetic research, genetic therapeutics, and pandemic surveillance.

Atomic physics: The article describes how electrons behave in multielectron atoms and sheds light on concepts such as Hund's rule, which says that the term with the greatest multiplicity is at the lowest energy level. By arranging themselves to reduce their information entropy, electrons can provide insight on the stability of molecules and atomic physics.

Cosmology: It is demonstrated that the second law of infodynamics is a cosmological requirement, and its validity is supported by thermodynamic considerations applied to an adiabatically expanding cosmos.

"The paper also provides an explanation for the prevalence of symmetry in the universe," said Dr. Vopson.

"The rules of nature are heavily reliant on symmetry principles, but the reasons for this have not received much attention up to this point. My results show that the lowest information entropy state is associated with great symmetry, which may account for nature's propensity towards it.

"This method of removing unnecessary data is similar to how a computer gets rid of or compresses waste code to conserve storage and reduce power use. and so lends credence to the notion that we're living in a simulation."

Information is the fundamental building unit of the cosmos and has physical substance, according to Dr. Vopson's earlier studies. He goes so far as to suggest that information—what he terms the mass-energy-information equivalency principle—may represent the enigmatic dark matter that comprises almost one-third of the cosmos.

The study makes the case that this view is supported by the second law of infodynamics, which may provide credence to the notion that information is a physical substance with the same properties as mass and energy.

"Empirical testing is necessary for the next steps to complete these studies," Dr. Vopson continued.

"One possible route would be my experiment devised last year to confirm the fifth state of matter in the universe—and change physics as we know it—using particle-antiparticle collisions."