I know I need to add some body to the question, so I'll give you some links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Determinism and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Superdeterminism. I have seen some comments that superdetermism is nothing but determinism for the whole universe. But that's what I would take determinism to be: for the whole universe (or multiverse). So, is there any difference here?

2 Answers 2


"Normal" determinism — or at least, the way that people normally approach the notion of determinism — in the face of apparently random events is the position that the randomness is due to uncontrolled variables in the influences on the apparently random system, which you are not taking into account. A good example would be the brownian motion of grains of pollen: it's random motion is due not so much to an inherent randomness of the motion of the pollen, as unaccounted-for-impacts on the pollen by molecules. (Notwithstanding the fact that the motion of those molecules is ultimately quantum-mechanical, of course.)

"Super-determinism" is the position that the apparently random behaviour of quantum mechanical systems, following the Born rule, is due to the fact that our own choices of experiments to perform are finely tuned in correlation with the systems we measure, to give rise to these statistics. Not only is our behaviour determined, but it is determined in such a way as to limit what we can see, and specifically to fool us into seeing random behaviour according to a stable statistical rule when the behaviour is in fact perfectly predictable in principle.

So super-determinism is indeed a variety of determinism: but it turns our usual assumptions about apparent randomness on its head — not only is our behaviour determined, but it is determined precisely in such a way as to prevent us from seeing that the world is deterministic.


Superdeterminism isn't much of a philosophical position, like determinism. It is a possible solution to a quantum mechanics theorem that has kinda of profound impacts on our understanding of the universe, namely, Bell's theorem. It suggests maybe the results came from the fact the universe has not a bit of real "freedom". To really get the point, however, i suggest you read the Bell's theorem.

In the more philosophical ground, however, it does look like common determinism, but in a very profound way: that the universe "knows" exactly where each particle of the universe will be at any given moment in the future, or was in the past, or will ever be. Determinism is more about more conceptual structures, like cause and effect, stating that a particular event could only have caused particular effect it did.

Maybe the "super" in it's name comes from the fact that it states free will is completely illusional.

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