Graduate studies at Western
|Abstract||We argue that the intractable part of the measurement problem -- the 'big' measurement problem -- is a pseudo-problem that depends for its legitimacy on the acceptance of two dogmas. The first dogma is John Bell's assertion that measurement should never be introduced as a primitive process in a fundamental mechanical theory like classical or quantum mechanics, but should always be open to a complete analysis, in principle, of how the individual outcomes come about dynamically. The second dogma is the view that the quantum state has an ontological significance analogous to the significance of the classical state as the 'truthmaker' for propositions about the occurrence and non-occurrence of events, i.e., that the quantum state is a representation of physical reality. We show how both dogmas can be rejected in a realist information-theoretic interpretation of quantum mechanics as an alternative to the Everett interpretation. The Everettian, too, regards the 'big' measurement problem as a pseudo-problem, because the Everettian rejects the assumption that measurements have definite outcomes, in the sense that one particular outcome, as opposed to other possible outcomes, actually occurs in a quantum measurement process. By contrast with the Everettians, we accept that measurements have definite outcomes. By contrast with the Bohmians and the GRW 'collapse' theorists who add structure to the theory and propose dynamical solutions to the 'big' measurement problem, we take the problem to arise from the failure to see the significance of Hilbert space as a new kinematic framework for the physics of an indeterministic universe, in the sense that Hilbert space imposes kinematic (i.e., pre-dynamic) objective probabilistic constraints on correlations between events.|
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
|Through your library||Only published papers are available at libraries|
Similar books and articles
Nicholas Maxwell (1973). The Problem of Measurement - Real or Imaginary? American Journal of Physics 41:1022-5.
Nicholas Maxwell (1976). Towards a Micro Realistic Version of Quantum Mechanics, Part I. Foundations of Physics 6 (3):275-292.
Don Robinson (1990). The Infinite Apparatus in the Quantum Theory of Measurement. PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1990:251 - 261.
I. I. I. Durand (1960). On the Theory of Measurement in Quantum Mechanical Systems. Philosophy of Science 27 (2):115-133.
Rodolfo Gambini, Luis Pedro Garcia Pintos & Jorge Pullin (2010). Undecidability and the Problem of Outcomes in Quantum Measurements. Foundations of Physics 40:93-115.
Jeffrey Barrett, Everett's Relative-State Formulation of Quantum Mechanics. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Robert Batterman (1992). Quantum Chaos and Semiclassical Mechanics. PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1992:50 - 65.
Nicholas Maxwell (1972). A New Look at the Quantum Mechanical Problem of Measurement. American Journal of Physics 40:1431-5..
Nicholas Maxwell (1975). Does the Minimal Statistical Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics Resolve the Measurement Problem? Methodology and Science 8:84-101.
Peter J. Lewis (2010). Probability in Everettian Quantum Mechanics. Manuscrito 33:285--306.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads95 ( #8,742 of 738,474 )
Recent downloads (6 months)37 ( #2,821 of 738,474 )
How can I increase my downloads?