The Doomsday Argument and the Simulation Argument

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Lewis, Peter J.
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The Doomsday Argument and the Simulation Argument share certain structural features, and hence are often discussed together (Bostrom 2003, Aranyosi 2004, Richmond 2008, Bostrom and Kulczycki 2011). Both are cases where reflecting on one’s location among a set of possibilities yields a counter-intuitive conclusion—in the first case that the end of humankind is closer than you initially thought, and in the second case that it is more likely than you initially thought that you are living in a computer simulation. Indeed, the two arguments do have some structural similarities. But there are also significant disanalogies between the two arguments, and I argue that these disanalogies mean that the Simulation Argument succeeds and the Doomsday Argument fails.