Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Universe is Procedurally Generated

I was thinking tonight how the universe mirrors video game design.  The term procedural generation refers to content being generated algorithmically rather than manually. So, if I start one swirl and then add 5 more swirls, my algorithm is the start of a swirl + 5 swirls, to give me an image such as the one you see in the digital version of Van Gogh's famous Starry Night

With respect to the universe, material is actually created on the fly rather than preexisting. For example, I have no idea what I'm going to write in this post - just yet - but I have a general direction and hope that in the end it is coherent. 

The pattern I am following is based on certain tools I have available to me (tools, resources, utilities) such as education, imagination, or forethought. 

Fortunately, the universe exists and I am in a physical embodiment that allows me to create this blog post, a heretofore digital thing that didn't previously exist. I am using the platform Blogger, but blogger has no idea what I'm going to write or if anyone is going to click on what I write. But that doesn't really matter... what matters is that a background algorithm exists, which allows me to create my blog post in the first place. 

In this sense, the universe has an underlining algorithm just like a procedurally generated video game. 

Anyhow, that's what I was thinking about tonight. It's not exactly funny ha-ha, but it's still kinda funny. The idea of thinking about infinity from within the constraints of a seemingly finite mind is funny, if you ask me. Of course, if you ask me, it's all funny. 

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