In ancient Greek, Natural Philosophy was the study of the world we live in. It was later developed into two branches: Physics that studies publicly observable natural phenomena; and Metaphysics that studies nonphysical fundamental mechanism that underlying the observed phenomena.
Physics laid the foundation for science which has branched out many disciplines but also limited itself to study only publicly observable phenomena that is repeatable and verifiable independently.
The so called scientific methodology has been well established to carry out scientific studies. This involves observing and collecting data, proposing hypothesis that makes prediction, testing the hypothesis by experiment.
Study of computation, despite being labelled ‘Computer Science’, is very different from science and scientific methodology. The term ’Computics’, although not widely used, should be a more appropriate term for this discipline.
The proposed Platonic computation system does not exist physically; it is postulated to exist in Platonic realm that is proposed to be the fundamental mechanism underlying perceived existence. Therefore the term ’ Metacomputics’ is adopted.
It is not possible to access the Platonic realm by our normal senses or by using current physical instruments. However, we can not deny the existence of abstract entities such as numbers, geometric shapes and other ‘universals’.
For instance, numbers are not physical objects, no one has bumped into the number 2 or tripped over the number 3, we cannot find the number 4 in the kitchen cupboard; and yet we do things with numbers all the time. We count with them, we measure with them, we formulate our scientific theories with them. Without the existence of numbers, we wouldn’t have physics, without physics there wouldn’t be science.
Numbers has a reality independent of physical reality. They have to be located somewhere outside space and time, i.e., in Platonic realm.
Most of us only perceive physical existence as shared reality in our normal waking state, based on which materialist science is built upon. Small minority of people, however, also perceive nonphysical existence. Some ESP adepts perceive nonphysical calculator and even nonphysical search engine. For those ESP adepts, nonphysical calculator is a shared objective reality.
The problem is that ESP is incompatible with materialist science, so the perception of nonphysical calculator will not be accepted by the mainstream scientific community.
It is hoped that post materialist science will expand the scope of research beyond physical existence and be able to accommodate ESP so that adepts can be regarded as expert witness and their perception can be treated as evidence.
If the existence of nonphysical calculator and nonphysical search engine is accepted, we then have supporting evidence for the existence of Platonic computer.
The true nature of the universe, or the universe in itself, according to Immanuel Kant, is unknowable. If it is unknowable, whatever we postulate the universe is cannot be true.
If an elephant is unknowable to blind people, what they understand about an elephant can only be metaphors such as fan, pillar, tube, etc.
In science, we rely heavily on metaphors to build models of the universe. The metaphors are picked from concepts we are already familiar with. These concepts evolve through time too.
In mechanical era, we had conceptual metaphors such as clocks and watches, so we modelled the macro universe as a clock like machine. When human society was electrified, we had electricity as a conceptual metaphor, so we modelled the micro universe as electrically charged particles. In information age, we have new metaphors such as computer, information processing, virtual reality, based on which we can build new model of the reality.
None of our models are proven to be true and none of them can be proven to be true. Arguing if the universe is made of particles or is it a computer generated output is like arguing among blind if an elephant is a fan or a pillar.
In comparison, some models are more logically coherent than others; some explains more observations and experiences than others; some are more useful than others; some models leads to clarity and others to confusion.
Consider which is more logical?
A chunk of matter /energy popping out of nothing; or an idea/mental object popping out of a blank mind? We observe the former only in magic shows; whereas we experience the latter personally, directly, and daily.
Consider which has more clarity and parsimony?
A particle animal zoo with hundreds of species; or binary 0 and 1.
Consider which is more useful?
A string in 10th dimension that makes no predictions and cannot be verified; or a computation system that can model the physical reality.
At the end of the day it ought to be a personal choice which model to use at a given situation and circumstance.