Every problem that is interesting is also soluble.
Science is objective. And in my view we cannot take any experimental results seriously except in the light of good explanations of them.
Humans may or may not have cosmic significance, and if they do, it will be by hitching a ride on the objective centrality of knowledge in the cosmic scheme of things.
I don’t think it would be a good idea for scientists to have more political power. Scientists as a group are more inclined to try to derive an ought from an is, than the population at large.
The truly privileged theories are not the ones referring to any particular scale of size or complexity, nor the ones situated at any particular level of the predictive hierarchy, but the ones that contain the deepest explanations.
Time travel may be achieved one day, or it may not. But if it is, it should not require any fundamental change in world-view, at least for those who broadly share the world view I am presenting in this book.
Is the human race a universal constructor?
Where we have good, testable explanations, they then have to be tested, and we drop the ones that fail the tests.
I myself believe that there will one day be time travel because when we find that something isn’t forbidden by the over-arching laws of physics we usually eventually find a technological way of doing it.
To me quantum computation is a new and deeper and better way to understand the laws of physics, and hence understanding physical reality as a whole.
The overwhelming majority of theories are rejected because they contain bad explanations, not because they fail experimental tests.
Our best theories are not only truer than common sense, they make more sense than common sense.
The most important application of quantum computing in the future is likely to be a computer simulation of quantum systems, because that’s an application where we know for sure that quantum systems in general cannot be efficiently simulated on a classical computer.
The brain is the only kind of object capable of understanding that the cosmos is even there, or why there are infinitely many prime numbers, or that apples fall because of the curvature of space-time, or that obeying its own inborn instincts can be morally wrong, or that it itself exists.
It is possible to build a virtual-reality generator whose repertoire includes every possible environment.