Things like Superintelligent AI and Simulation Theory are, IMO, sexy sci-fi remakes of real anxieties filtered through rich techies who have watched too much bad science fiction.
We already have a Paperclip Maximiser, it's called Captialism.
We already live in a fake universe, it's called Manufactured Consent.
@stolas Charles Stross makes an interesting connection back to cosmism and the early Russian work on the theory of space travel:
A fire is burning in Bird Spirit Land.