Empirical adequacy and the availability of reliable records in quantum mechanics

Philosophy of Science 63 (1):49-64 (1996)
Authors
Jeffrey Barrett
University of California, Irvine
Abstract
In order to judge whether a theory is empirically adequate one must have epistemic access to reliable records of past measurement results that can be compared against the predictions of the theory. Some formulations of quantum mechanics fail to satisfy this condition. The standard theory without the collapse postulate is an example. Bell's reading of Everett's relative-state formulation is another. Furthermore, there are formulations of quantum mechanics that only satisfy this condition for a special class of observers, formulations whose empirical adequacy could only be judged by an observer who records her measurement results in a special way. Bohm's theory is an example. It is possible to formulate hidden-variable theories that do not suffer from such a restriction, but these encounter other problems
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DOI 10.1086/289893
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Emergent Spacetime and Empirical (in)Coherence.Nick Huggett & Christian Wüthrich - 2013 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 44 (3):276-285.
Measurement Outcomes and Probability in Everettian Quantum Mechanics.David Baker - 2006 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 38 (1):153-169.
The Problem of Confirmation in the Everett Interpretation.Emily Adlam - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 47:21-32.

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