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In Eureka series 5 episode 1 (the others haven't aired yet where I live) the crew of the Astraeus

are in a simulation, where they think that they are in Eureka 4 years later.

Now I know that Eureka is very substantially self-sufficient, so I can almost accept that they didn't have any delivery drivers from outside, but surely they would have had SOME contact with people externally, that would have alerted them. It is not like the Matrix when everyone was in the simulation.

Do they never check news sites, or chat with colleagues outside Eureka? It wouldn't have to be often, but surely someone would have had some clue before the matrix started to break down?

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    Keep watching - it will become clear in the second episode. I won't spoil it for you. – Chris B. Behrens Jun 6 '12 at 14:08
  • We are beyond that point - just, and I still cannot get it. – Schroedingers Cat Jun 6 '12 at 14:55
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Eureka doesn't have to be entirely isolated for the simulation to work. It just has to be isolated enough that the outside world isn't a bigger problem (i.e., harder to simulate) than anything else. Considering that the program is capable of convincingly simulating the crew's love interests, I don't think it's implausible that it could come up with some reasonable-sounding chats with colleagues. News is even easier: it won't be affected by what's happening in Eureka, so you can prewrite it.

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Massive spoilers ahead for at least the next few episodes:

Everyone is in the simulation.

More specifically, the crew of the ship (19 people? something like that) are in a virtual Eureka where everyone who wasn't on the ship is computer-generated - an NPC in video game parlance. The VR program only has to deal with those 19 people, so it can easily generate fake news reports, websites, delivery drivers, and whatever other interactions they have. The four-year gap can be used to explain any discrepancies between what the crew remember and what the VR programmers (and therefore, the NPCs) know.

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