All Things As Virtual Reality
Personally experiencing a full up-front version of virtual reality with you immersed inside as the star player, is the 'in-thing' in modern digital Virtual Reality Technology right now. Immersing yourself in 3-D 'what if' scenarios, ideally of your own creation - the early versions of the ultimate in Star Trek holodeck simulations - is the name of the virtual reality game. Of course you already experience virtual reality 24/7/52. Anything and everything you experience is courtesy of your sensory apparatus, your memories, and your overall state of being as a conscious, self-aware being. If all reality is experienced solely within your mind then you already exist in a virtual reality 'world'. That's especially the case when you dream. That could also literally be the case. In that Star Trek virtual reality holodeck, some characters were really real and some characters were virtually real. What if in this (holodeck) world you are actually one of those virtual reality characters? Welcome to the world of virtual reality.
There is a lifelong virtual reality scenario that plays out inside your skull from the time you develop a reasonable facsimile of a brain until your death. This unfolding virtual reality scenario, call it consciousness if you will, is being constantly upgraded as you continue to receive new sensory data from outside (outside being external to your skull). But the contents of this ever unfolding mental virtual reality scenario (I don't really want to call it a 'game'), your mental path through life from birth to death, do not endlessly increase. Your brain is not a black hole receptacle that can suck in everything that externally comes your way.
The same with our simulation - if simulation there be. There is the highly structured NOW where the bits and bytes are assembled into our perceived virtual reality landscape. All of the assembled bits and bytes that made up NOW, now dissolve back into their fundamental components to be reused, recycled and reassembled for the new, next, upcoming NOW. In other words, all of the software that is now past tense, that has served its purpose and has come and gone, can be reused, recycled and reassembled into the software required that's yet to come - of the future yet to unfold.
At any and every given moment only part of the overall virtual reality scenario your mind finds itself in is front-and-centre. That's pretty much what you are conscious of in the immediate here and now. Other parts are stored away as memory, in your subconscious, out of sight and out of mind until needed. But by far and away most of this virtual reality mental software just dissolves away back into bits and bytes. Over your lifespan you are going to forget 99.999% of what you ever experienced. These bits and bytes will just be reused, recycled, reassembled as required - the raw materials from which the next episode of complex front-and-centre virtual reality conscious experience plays out. Other bits and bytes are lost via heat and other waste products to be replaced by your intake and breaking down of food, air, water, etc. So your brain just isn't an endlessly absorbing sponge or dump of bits and bytes. Translated, over your lifespan, bits and bytes in will pretty much equal bits and bytes out.
Now the only reality that you have ever known is the reality you find yourself in right now. You have never known any other kind of reality even though you know some actual, and some potential other realities exist. You know there has to be some sort of reality inside a Black Hole but exactly what that is, nobody knows, and even though there is speculation that our entire Cosmos is the inside of a Black Hole, you're probably assuming that you aren't inside a Black Hole reality. You know there is virtual reality because we have created computer simulations yet you are not a character in one of our video games. Potentially, there might be the reality of extra dimensions according to string theory. Still, the only reality that you have every known is right here and now.
If the initial mind analogy isn't sufficient, think of one of our own simulations, be it Virtual Reality gaming, training or "what if" research. Only a part of the whole is active at any one time and, in the first two cases at least (gaming and training) under the control of the user (i.e. - the player or trainee). So at any one time, presumably the NOW time, only a small fraction of the gaming, training or "what if" scenario software is operational. That's all the computer need handle from moment to moment. That NOW fraction. As things evolve, new software comes into play and old software retreats into the background in a dormant mode. Thus, you can have a massive amount of software, say enough to simulate the entire visible Universe, but only a small fraction is being played out and processed at any one time - thus you don't need massive computing crunch power to simulate an entire Cosmos since not all of the simulated Cosmos is in-your-face in any NOW moment.
Since you have never experienced any other reality except the one you currently find yourself in, you have no other reality that you have experienced that you can compare and contrast this reality to. Therefore, this reality might indeed be "an extremely elaborate simulation". You don't know one way or another since you only have one data point to work with.
Now it could well be that say the Cosmos of The Simulators would require say 100,000 computer crunch power units to simulate one-on-one. Alas, The Simulators only have 100 units of computer crunch power on tap and so have simulated a 100 computer crunch power mini-Cosmos. That's us; that's our Universe by the way. No near infinities need be entered into, which reflects the sort of computer crunch power units we have expended. We haven't over-taxed our available systems of computer crunch power.
Now The Simulators, operating their simulation which is our mini-Cosmos (our Universe), could well have a different perception of time relative to what they have simulated. In other words, perhaps one 'minute' of their existence equals one decade of ours. Or, just as we can speed up or slow down a DVD, so to could The Simulators control their simulation. They could speed up or fast-forward through the boring bits and slow-down when things get interesting.