Approximate Hidden Variables

Foundations of Physics 30 (7):971-1000 (2000)

The usual definition of (non-contextual) hidden variables is found to be too restrictive, in the sense that, according to it, even some classical systems do not admit hidden variables. A more general concept is introduced and the term “approximate hidden variables” is used for it. This new concept avoids the aforementioned problems, since all classical systems admit approximate hidden variables. Standard quantum systems do not admit approximate hidden variables, unless the corresponding Hilbert space is 2-dimensional. However, an appropriate non-standard quantum system, which arises by focussing on momentum and position and neglecting the remaining observables, admits approximate hidden variables. Systems associated with JBW-algebras (resp. von Neumann algebras) and satisfying some mild conditions admit approximate hidden variables iff they are classical, that is, iff the corresponding JBW-algebra (resp. von Neumann algebra) is associative (resp. commutative)
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DOI 10.1023/A:1003662802913
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