Questions tagged [quantum-physics]

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In which way does quantum mechanics disprove determinism?

I've heard this pop up in a discussion with my physicist/engineer roommates, but didn't care to ask at the time. Now I'm mighty curious about it. Wikipedia doesn't really seem to say much on this ...
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Why is the complex number an integral part of physical reality?

In modern physics, the quantum wave distribution function necessarily uses complex numbers to represent itself. If physics defines the physical reality, then what we are saying by the statement above ...
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What are some good books about the philosophy of quantum mechanics?

I am fascinated about the implications of quantum mechanics to philosophy. Where can I find good references to the philosophy of quantum mechanics, and its implications for realism/antirealism, holism,...
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Can a lack of knowledge or understanding invalidate a positive claim?

Consider the example of causal determinism. It can be phrased in many ways, all with identical meaning: - The idea that "every event, including human cognition and behavior, decision and action, is ...
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How does Penrose defeat the computational theory of mind?

In Shadows Of The Mind Roger Penrose puts forth a Gödelian argument against the computational theory of mind. He then goes on to suggest that quantum mechanics plays a central role in the realization ...
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Has quantum mechanics destroyed the fundaments of logical reasoning?

In quantum mechanics it is thought to be possible that something could be at two places at the same time. But if that is really the case then perhaps law of non-contradiction is no longer valid. So ...
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How does Quantum Mechanics affect the modern account of free will and determinism?

In the edition of Feb/Mar 2016 of the Philosophy Now Magazine says: Under Feel Free to Differ it says: [...] Determinism itself comes in different flavours. Hard determinism of the most absolute ...
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Does thermal time hypothesis finally resolve Zeno's paradox?

Is Time Just A Trick Of The Mind? (read article) Carlo Rovelli, one of the founder of Loop Quantum Gravity theory likes to think so. Furthermore wikipedia entry highlights: This position has lead ...
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What are the philosophical implications of the Higgs mechanism in theoretical physics?

The higgs mechanism is a mechanism by which gives gauge bosons their mass, by absorbing the goldstone bosons appearing in the goldstone theorem. I found this mechanism very mathematically beautiful, ...
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10 votes
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Is Conway-Kochen's "free will" theorem about quantum measurements an argument for panpsychism?

Conway and Kochen have proved a theorem about free will (no to be confused with the related Kochen–Specker theorem, which rules out hidden variables), which states that if we have a type of ...
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Can the observer be the observed?

As a supplement to this question as to whether particles can be observers, supposing that the answer is yes. One could suppose a setup where particle A is observing particle B, but what to stop us ...
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What would a quantum interpretation without ontology be like?

Luboš Motl keeps insisting quantum mechanics invalidates ontology, and has made ontology obsolete, just like phlogiston. What would metaphysics without ontology look like, where words like "existence" ...
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What is the ontological status of information that is permanently inaccessible to any conceivable observer?

Rovelli & others, in Relational Quantum Mechanics (RQM) take the simple ontological picture of the Copenhagen Picture and relativise it. This is what I was suggesting in this question, though I ...
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Is compatibilism still considered a valid approach to free will?

Has the Free Will Theorem of Conway and Kochen been taken seriously by the philosophical community? Is compatibilism still considered a valid approach to free will?
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What are the philosophical implications of the uncertainty principle?

What, if any, are the major philosophical consequences of the uncertainty principle? Wikipedia describes the principle this way: [T]he principle implies that it is impossible to simultaneously ...
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What do Philosophers think about the Many Worlds Interpretation of quantum mechanics?

One of the interpretations of quantum mechanics is the Many Worlds Interpretation which basically states that the universe as a whole develops like an unobserved quantum system, and any observation ...
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Schrödinger's cat being "both dead and alive"

Famously, Schrödinger's cat is found to be both dead and alive within a closed system - at the mercy of quantum mechanics. But why is the cat "both dead and alive"? For the Copenhagen interpretation, ...
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Plato meets Quantum Mechanics

What would Plato have said about the Quantum Mechanics theory development? I mean, we have had to give the reason a second place in order to give to the observations the main motor of the theory and I ...
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Does Quantum Physics Refute Ayn Rand's Objectivism?

Rand's Objectivisms' central tenets are that reality exists independently of consciousness, that human beings have direct contact with reality through sense perception, that one can attain objective ...
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Can 'Nothing Exist before we measure it'?

Bohr famously said in relation to quantum systems: Nothing exists until we measure it This can't be right, for how can we measure Nothing, something that doesn't exist. It seems it must come into ...
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Does Einstein's local realism in quantum mechanics imply superdeterminism?

Einstein insisted that nature is locally real, which is also know as counterfactual defeniteness and means that results of experiments are predetermined. But, if everything is predetermined in every ...
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How did quantum mechanics shape the scientific method?

Quantum mechanics has certainly changed scientific concepts (deterministic <-> probabilistic). But to which extent did it change the scientific method? Since I perceive the scientific method more ...
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Are all pancomputationalist models for the universe compatible with informational realism?

Pancomputationalist theories are a group of physical theories that try to describe the universe itself as a computer or an informational (processing) structure. Informational (structural) realism is ...
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Does quantum mechanics suggest that our scientific method is flawed?

Some quantum mechanics experiments seem to suggest that our current understanding of reality is flawed. Entanglement experiments show us that particles separated in space, can still somehow ...
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Probabilistic prediction (quantum mechanics) - what is the meaning of such a prediction and how do you falsify it?

Suppose there's a hypothetical quantum physics experiment. There are 2 possible outcomes to this experiment A or B. QM predicts that the probability of each is 50%. Firstly, what is the meaning of ...
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Understanding "Emptiness"

One of the many sincere efforts by mankind has been to try to understand "Emptiness" sometimes by scientific methods, sometimes by religious doctrines. Recently, we are trying to investigate ...
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Does wave-particle duality pose a challenge to ontology?

Quantum mechanics poses a challenge to epistemology in terms of what is measurable, what is observable, and realism in general. But does it pose a challenge to ontology as well? Ontology is the ...
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Does Quantum Entanglement Disprove the Principle of Locality?

Regarding the debate between quantum mechanics and determinism I have encountered a problem I can't find the answer to. It is my impression that in order to solve Bell's inequality you would have to ...
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Has there been any success in using modal logic to interpret Quantum Mechanics?

Quantum Mechanics rather famously has problems in interpretation - straightforward realism doesn't appear to work. Is there any work with modal logic that throws light on this question? The SEP has ...
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Quantum mechanics and the principle of bivalence

Does quantum mechanics, due to the phenomenon of superposition (Schrodinger's cat is both dead and alive), give reasons to alter the laws of logic, specifically the principle of bivalance (something ...
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Are there laws of Nature?

The laws of physics observably change, that is their expression in terms of mathematics can, both through internal coherance & through physical insight. One supposes that there are actually laws ...
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Should Time and Space Serve as Necessary or Contingent modalities of Division in Cosmology?

In the introduction to Process and Reality, Whitehead criticizes the tendency to posit logical or ontological necessity as the primary modes of cosmological explanation. For Whitehead time is a ...
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We know Classical Mechanics is wrong. But can we also say every other theory is wrong except the Theory of Everything?

Classical Mechanics (CM) or Quantum Mechanics (QM) is technically wrong. That doesn't mean they are irrelevant or have less significance, but they are wrong regardless of how accurate they are. Can we ...
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What is the difference between determinism and superdeterminism?

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 ...
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Where did Husserl say that in quantum mechanics spatial localisation is no longer a principle of individualisation?

According to Philosophy & Physics edited by Bernard d'Espagant: I am thinking of a text by Husserl, who was quite removed from physics, who said that the fundamental problem posed by QM is that ...
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Does quantum mechanics disprove the Principle of Sufficient Reason?

Lets say a scientist were to perform the double slit experiment. He sends in one electron through the slits and then that he measures the random location on his measurement device after the ...
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Does all matter exist forever?

I was reading about non-duality (spirituality / philosophy) that discusses the idea that everything in reality is one, since any matter can become any other matter, (a tree can become a chair and a ...
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Are physical measurements constructs?

This question was provoked by my knowledge of the kochen specker theorem, which if I am correct is a theory that states measurements sometimes, within a system, do not exist until it is consciously ...
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How is a superposition with two different weights for the states accounted for in the many worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics?

In the many world interpretation of quantum mechanics, after a superposition of states has interacted with some outside agent the two states smoothly continue to exist in two different worlds (so no ...
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4 votes
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Good resources for philosophers to learn more about quantum mechanics?

It is easy to find high-level descriptions of the implications of quantum mechanics, but they always seem a bit handwavy to me, or at least it is hard to know whether those interpretations are really ...
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The exaggeration of the role of observer in quantum mechanics

In the famous double slit experiment, it's often said that the presence of an observer causes the electrons to behave as particles. "The need for the "observer" to be conscious has been rejected by ...
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Testing the Dream Hypothesis

Is there in existence any set of physical parameters which can be measured, which would enable one to determine whether or not reality by itself is a dream?
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What are some good philosophical resources on nonlocality?

Bernard d'Espagnat offers a good treatment of nonlocality as it pertains to physics, in his 2006 On Physics and Philosophy. What I'm interested is whether nonlocality has been observed and discussed ...
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Will superdeterminism, if proven, make science useless?

Superdeterminism states that no experiment we perform has complete freedom, so no matter what you are trying to learn about how things work out in nature, nature will tell you what it wants to tell ...
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Is probability in classical physics always bayesian?

I am wondering how probability is intended in classical physics. I have read a number of articles where it is said that probability in classical physics is generally intended in subjectivist terms as ...
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Does 'the quantum mind' solve the hard problem of consciousness and how popular is it?

Does 'the quantum mind' solve the hard problem of consciousness and how popular is it among philosophers of science? The hard problem of consciousness is the problem of explaining how and why we ...
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Does Quantum Mechanics imply free will? [duplicate]

I think that QM does not favor free will, any more than Classical Mechanics does, and here is my reasoning: QM predicts odds, but that doesn't mean we are free, right? To be free, we will have to ...
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The ontological logic of the relational interpretation of Quantum Mechanics

Update: this question was due to a misunderstanding that was clarified by a more thorough reading of the source (see my answer below for details). Thank you to all who contributed. In Helgoland, which ...
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Can many worlds interpretation have universes with different laws?

The Many Worlds Interpretation of quantum mechanics is classified by Max Tegmark as a level-3 multiverse hypothesis. This means that in the universes that it will predict, there could be different ...
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Quantum Mechanics has formally undecidable problems. What is the philosophical significance of this?

A certain problem is quantum mechanics has been shown to be uncomputable. This means that although it is in a certain sense making a prediction, there is no systematic way to determine what prediction ...
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