Thursday, April 7, 2016

F is for . . .

Image source: Creative Commons courtesy of Anna Gutermuth

Felix, as in the short story Felix Was Here by L.G. Keltner. This tale won the honor of being the title work in the upcoming IWSG Parallels anthology to be released on May 3. The writing is absolutely superb.

This story focuses on Betty, who is living what seems to be a normal life until she hears the name Felix. Then maelstrom of feelings and memories start to sneak in and she gradually realizes that the world she is experiencing is not quite real.

The idea of a false universe (hey, another f-word!) is not an idle question. Go ahead and Google “Is the universe real” and down the rabbit hole you will go. There are physicists who hypothesize that everything we are experiencing right now is a computer simulation. Yep. The Matrix again.

Image source: Beat Küng

All I have to say is, “Can I have an upgrade, please?” (Actually I should get down on my virtual knees and thank them for not making me a dung beetle. All things considered my reality is pretty sweet.)

Why would physicists question reality in this manner? Check out this article at the Smithsonian's website. Four possible realities are discussed for our universe. 1. It is a hologram. 2. It is a computer simulation. 3. It is a black hole. 4. It is a bubble in an ocean of universes.

For brevity, I'll focus on the second option. One bit of possible evidence that the universe is coded would be mathematics. No matter where or when you are, math stays constant. Two plus two stays four. (And don't bring up modular arithmetic to argue with me, smartypants.)

Image source: Judy Schmidt

Suppose our universe is a computer generated 3D grid. According to the article, there may be ways to detect this via anomalies generated by the grid itself: 

If the universe is a vast grid, the motions and distributions of high-energy particles called cosmic rays may reveal similar anomalies—a glitch in the Matrix—and give us a peek at the grid’s structure.

Huh? I don't quite get that last part either. My brain needs reformatting. 

If this is true, would that be comforting or terrifying? Who wrote the code? How could one connect this to religion and The Almighty? Do you still feel real?


  1. Nope, am not real at all. Probably a dung beetle masquerading as a human, pretending to participate in something called a blogging challenge.

    Felix just sounds totally absorbing. Waiting for the release.


    1. I was going to leave a comment, but then I read Nilanjana's and decided I can't top that! So, uh, what she said. ;)

      @HeatherJacksonW from
      WriteOnSisters - Masterplots from A to Z

  2. It really is like the ultimate conspiracy theory!The earth, the universe us - all invented by Microsoft!

    Keith's Ramblings : My short story has 3 obscure F's

  3. What a tempting proposition to Google if the universe is real. I have a feeling I'd get nothing done for the rest of the day!!!

    Meet My Imaginary Friends

  4. And then there's the mysterious pi... which seems to go on forever and ever and ever, amen!

  5. Having been a computer programmer in a previous professional life my one reaction to us living is a simulation is this: Oh my god, when's it going to crash? ;)
    Tasha's Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

  6. Thank you so much for featuring my story! Maybe we are all part of a computer simulation, and our programmer just made us for a school project or something. Wouldn't that be freaky? Hmm, I wonder what the final grade would be?

  7. Ha. I was a few lines above you saying 'glitch in the matrix' when I was thinking "it's a glitch in the matrix". LOL

    ~Ninja Minion Patricia Lynne aka Patricia Josephine~
    Story Dam
    Patricia Lynne, Indie Author

  8. Interesting story, thank you. Who wrote the code indeed. Great question.
    Silvia @

  9. Now THIS has given me waaaay too much to think about. I'm kind of scared to do that Google search. Then again, I am too curious for my own good. Fascinating stuff!

    Jen Chandler was Here

  10. Terrifying. Perhaps the fata morgana I wrote about are one of the glitches?

    I liked the first Matrix movie, but it made me very uncomfortable as well. No one wants to be told that everything they believe in is a lie.

  11. That sounds so interesting, I need to read the anthology!

    Hey, if the Universe isn't real, that means the bad stuff doesn't matter. That comforts me.

  12. These types of questions about alternate universes give me a giant headache! Ack!

    Yvonne V

  13. Oh yeah, a fantasy based on mathematics. Now I'm really depressed. LOL Did I choose this or did someone else based on an algorithm I don't even understand. Damn I should have paid more attention in calculus!

  14. Interesting and I don't understand a bit of it. Looking forward to reading the anthology though.

  15. I like your Matrix references :) The laws of mathematics do seem to come into play quite often in our lives. It's even in our music! I read that Beethoven used some form of numbering system for some of his compositions.

  16. I use glitch in the Matrix to explain most things.


  17. Philosophers have been arguing about whether or not the universe is real since the 17th century...but it mystifies me how they managed to discuss (let alone understand!) any of the ideas involved without having "The Matrix" to fall back on as an explanatory device!

    Personally, I'm convinced this can't be the real universe. Too many crazy coincidences. I think, personally, this is an MMO gone rogue (though why we'd be playing one this dull is beyond me) and I put in some really bad cheat code that mucked up all my data. Or something. :P

    Iphis of Scyros (finally getting the chance to visit everyone else's A-to-Z)


I will do everything in my power to visit commenter's blogs unless I've been abducted by aliens or my children get sick. (If my children get abducted by aliens, I will be very busy, of course, catching up on my sleep.)