How to DOWNLOAD A BRAIN! | The SCIENCE!...of Nier: Automata

  • 🎬 Video
  • ℹ️ Published 6 years ago

Will Androids and computers ever be as Smart as people? Maybe! NIER: AUTOMATA explores this very subject with its main character–the android, YoRHa. She is a brilliant, beautiful, and strong-as-hell woman…android. But like all amazing things, she can be destroyed. However, this is no problem because YoRHa consistently saves the contents of her brain throughout the game. Wait. Is this sort of brain back-up even probable?! It’s not as crazy as it sounds. In this episode, Austin explains the SCIENCE of how to digitally save the contents of a human brain!

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"You can't explode an egg with your router."

I feel like I was issued a challenge.

Author — Lord Jub-Jub


"how do you build a brain"
well it's a very taxing nine month process

Author — baronbrixus


Game theory should do something regarding Nier:Automata. This is a masterpiece that a lot of people just don’t know about.

Author — Surge of Rescues & Gaming


Can we get a theory on Nier in general? ;-; it's beautiful, ok?

Author — LunaWaterFR


What if:

1- Androids "brains" have a lot less information than human brains

2- Are made of a combination of standard data + "personal" data, where you just need to backup the personal data as the rest is common for every android

3- you only send updates of the data. You don't need to upload everything if it is the same + 1 event. Just upload the event.

Edit: Just remembered. There's a chip called OS. If you take it, you "die". So a lot of data must be preloaded in the android and be common to all YorHa units. At least for a type (A, O, S, B...).

Author — Luis G.


It's possible her brain is 2.5 petabytes but perhaps 2B compresses the data in her brain before uploading it, significantly reducing upload size. A petabyte isn't that hard to grasp if you've worked around a "big data" facility. I used to work for a NOAA laboratory as a computer technician and we used big data for our weather models. Basically, I was a babysitter for a super computer. One of my tasks was to keep up with our tape backup system. YES, DATA CENTER'S USE ACTUAL TAPES TO BACK THINGS UP IN 2017! It's the cheapest medium per terabyte around. One LTO6 tape could hold about 2.5 TB of data (and costs about $30). Our tape machine was a little box, about 4x4 feet in length and width and about 6 feet tall. It could hold about 300 tapes at once so that's about 750 TB (I usually only put 290 tapes in at once so that swapping would be easier). When I exchanged tapes, I could load them into a with 10 tapes on it so that's 25 TB at once. The tape machine had a little webcam inside of it so I could run back to my office PC after putting the tapes in and watch the robot inside of it swing around and put the tapes onto a shelf. I'm not sure of the actual cost, but I was told it was a couple hundred thousand-ish, so about the cost of a house in more affordable parts of the country.

We had a lot more than 750 TB worth of data to handle so I would usually have to export about 10 or 15 tapes every few days. We had a bunch of shelves with tapes on them and I'd estimate there were probably 400-500 tapes on them. Occasionally, the tape machine would produce off-site tapes. In case NOAA's lab caught fire, flooded or was destroyed in some other catastrophe, we kept another 400 or so tapes off-site at a storage facility we had across town, only exchanging them a few times per year. A petabyte is 1024 terabytes and I was easily handling that much in tapes over the course of my time there.

This was just NOAA's BACKUP tapes. We still had a lot of this data in use on a whole series of RAID arrays (a RAID is a computer with a stack of several hard drives in it, all in use at once). One of my tasks every evening was to walk through the various rooms of our facility and report back any RAID arrays that had been reporting errors. and this was just for our department in NOAA. There were other sections of the buildings with much larger tape machines, ones larger than a midsize car, though I don't think they had storage shelves outside of the machine and I don't know if they used modern LTO6 tapes since I didn't work in their department.

Author — Monsuco


I instantly went from "meh, if i find Nier for cheap I might by it." to "OH MY GOD I NEED THIS GAME IN MY HANDS NOW!" in like one minute, GOOD JOB AUSTIN!

Author — Bone_Doggo


While I understand that you're talking about backing up the whole brain I feel like I do have to point out that in Nier you're NOT backing up the whole brain.

Allow me to elaborate, with minor introduction/tutorial spoilers (which I'll keep as vague as possible, ) when 9S is sent back to the bunker in space he's only lost his memories from his last backup. The backup is a concept fairly common in transhumanist fiction where people are basically immortal but can still die, it's a method of updating an existing backup with the information gained between backups.
So how does this translate to Nier? Well, because we can see 9S only lost his memories of the mission we know that he's already uploaded (the process of converting a whole consciousness to a digital state), he was restored from a backup. The amount of data needing to be transmitted when 2B/9S/whatever the other android is called saves is only the difference between their last backup and the data gained via their experiences since then.
Depending on how the consciousness is emulated, these memories may be stored as external data anyway, possibly using more traditional data storage methods (to imagine this, think of 2B's consciousness as the OS and her memories as a folder on the hard drive) she can still access and understand that information clearly but it doesn't have to be stored as a complicated web of neural data, it can be video, audio or any number of methods of recording what happened.
Lets assume it's video and audio for the sake of this argument and that 2B has saved and then gone on a mission that lasts 2 hours. It's impossible to know what resolution they're recording in in the year 11XXX so lets take today's extreme examples as a baseline:
4096x2304p60 video. A single uncompressed RGB 3x16 frame is 56.6MB! We've got 60 of those a second for say... 2 hours. 24.5TB total.
Now that's a gigantic difference from 2.5PB. Even at 10Gb/s of today's speeds (assuming 10% overhead for header info on the packets) that's only an upload of 24 hours 26 minutes and change. For the sake of argument lets take the in-game calculated upload speed of 612Pb/s (that's 612 MILLION Gb/s) and apply that here and we've got an upload of less time than it takes your brain to register that you've pressed the button. 2.5TB isn't even a blip on the network at those speeds. It's so fast that doing the math to work out how many nano, or possibly picoseconds that it'd take for that data to transfer is pointless.

Even if they didn't have crazy future upload speeds they've still got a time of only 24 hours to secure your memories of that mission. Lets make an assumption that they've managed to triple that 10Gb/s speed to 30Gb/s and they're now only looking at an 8 hour upload to secure that experience. They could do that while sleeping each night. Humans don't remember 100% of every day, let alone with perfect fidelity. If the cyberbrain emulation running on 2B edits down a whole day's experiences into 2 hours of high fidelity memory then it's concievable she could remember everything important and then some by simply getting a good night's sleep.

Author — Jacob Shaw


"Lingerie models with the strength of Superman"

*At last, everything I aspire to be*

Author — Alyona Doar


I love the stones being thrown at matpat. #letAustinCurse

Author — Jackdarkgem


Amazing video, as always. Though, i highly recommend you to play the first nier as well. It was very very enjoyable.

Author — Ricardo Sierra


6:28 Another difference between analog, and digital systems is that digital is extremely PRECISE. However this preciseness is the same reason why digital has a tendency to get extremely confused if it's off by a little bit. However, Analog makes generalizations, or gets close to the desired value so it doesn't get as confused, and excel in this category

Author — andrew lee


NieR automata is my favorite game of all time and the fact that game theory made an episode on it fills my heart

Author — Kono


I imagine it's possible to encode "consciousness data" more efficiently than recording the entire structure of a brain. If not, maybe they'd only need to upload their hippocampus for a quick save.

Author — J B


The beautiful classical music you use in the background paired with your crazy voice is what makes these videos amazing.

Author — LukeDaDuke


Huh, I came here expecting Austin to completely shred my favorite game’s science to bits. Instead I got what might be the first time I’ve ever seen GameTheory agree with video game science. Woo hoo! XD

Author — Brandon Fleming


A point you neglected to mention: You don't need to transfer the entire contents of the mind every time you save. You can just transfer what's changed since last time. It's a very commonly-used technique in data compression and in backup systems.

Author — Roxor128


They separated the human body from the soul into 2 separate being on previous games. Making the Gestalt and the Replicant(the empty shells or bodies). The Replicants became sentient and the big question on Automata is... Do they upload their data or do they use a similar technology to separate their souls and put it on an android body? Do androids have souls?

Author —


It's worth considering that SB is an android. I'm not super in touch with the game's lore, but it's reasonable to assume that its structure may be far different and more efficient for this data backup.
Not to mention some data can be cached. You don't necessarily need the entire brain each time, just the parts that change.



This game is an absolute masterpiece. Including the OSTs

Author — The lneffable Us