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<title>The Truth About Multiverses | Divya Manian</title>
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<time datetime="2008-07-16T00:00:00-07:00" pubdate><span class='month'>Jul</span> <span class='day'>16</span> <span class='year'>2008</span></time>
<h1 class="entry-title"><a href="/the-truth-about-multiverses.html">The Truth About Multiverses</a></h1>
<div class="entry-content"><p>I have been reading a lot of Science Fiction/Fantasy books lately (as you might see on <a href="">my list of books read</a>). The common element among most of them seem to be the idea of a <a href="">multiverse</a> - Neal Stephenson&#8217;s <a href="">Snow Crash</a>, Philip Pullman&#8217;s <a href="">His Dark Materials</a> series (Golden Compass, The Subtle Knife, The Amber Spyglass), Ian McDonald&#8217;s <a href="">Brasyl</a> and Neil Gaiman&#8217;s <a href="">Fragile Things</a>.</p>
<p>While there is nothing new about Neil Gaiman&#8217;s visualization of the existence of multiple Gods and their interference in the human realm, the other books are interesting in how they define &#8220;Multiverse&#8221;. Philip Pullman&#8217;s books have parallel universes where things that are scientifically improbable in one world seems possible in an other. Lyra (the female protagonist) and Will (the male protagonist) live in the same Oxford but in different universes. </p>
<p>The idea exposed in Neal Stephenson&#8217;s Snow Crash is that of Virtual Reality (VR). One day the separation between the real and the virtual becomes so thin that people hook themselves up into VR as they are doing their tasks in real life. This is not a new idea, but the plot goes into how viruses in VR can cause a havoc in real life - the plot itself is very unconvincing, but the idea is essentially a great problem to think about. Is it possible that one day computer viruses can actually harm human brains?</p>
<p>The last of them is the Ian McDonald&#8217;s Brasyl which draws on the ideas mentioned in <a href="">The Fabric of Reality</a>. The book Fabric of Reality by David Deutsch states a person is a set of copies in nearby parallel worlds. From Wikipedia, &#8220;This comes out in his analysis of free will: I could have chosen otherwise is analysed as Other copies of me chose otherwise.&#8221;</p>
<p>What is interesting is that each copy chooses differently (since there are unknown number of copies there could be some with similar choices) and has a different life.</p>
<p>It is very exciting to think about such a multiverse. I presume religious believers will have trouble embracing multiverses into religion (though I am sure somebody is going to write in saying it is already a &#8220;fact&#8221; of Hindu philosophy).</p>
<p>I wonder what the other Divyas in the multiverses are doing right now?</p>
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<p><img class="avatar" src="/assets/divya.png" height=50> <a href="">Divya Manian</a> is a Web Developer in Seattle. <a href="/about.html">More about me ❭</a></p>
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