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Dennis Dieks [82]Dennis Geert Bernardus Johan Dieks [1]
  1. A Contextual Approach to Scientific Understanding.Henk Regt & Dennis Dieks - 2005 - Synthese 144 (1):137-170.
    Achieving understanding of nature is one of the aims of science. In this paper we offer an analysis of the nature of scientific understanding that accords with actual scientific practice and accommodates the historical diversity of conceptions of understanding. Its core idea is a general criterion for the intelligibility of scientific theories that is essentially contextual: which theories conform to this criterion depends on contextual factors, and can change in the course of time. Our analysis provides a general account of (...)
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  2.  46
    Emergence in Holographic Scenarios for Gravity.Dennis Dieks, Jeroen van Dongen & Sebastian de Haro - 2015 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 52 (Part B):203-216.
    'Holographic' relations between theories have become a main theme in quantum gravity research. These relations entail that a theory without gravity is equivalent to a gravitational theory with an extra spatial dimension. The idea of holography was first proposed in 1993 by Gerard 't Hooft on the basis of his studies of evaporating black holes. Soon afterwards the holographic 'AdS/CFT' duality was introduced, which since has been heavily studied in the string theory community and beyond. Recently, Erik Verlinde has proposed (...)
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  3.  59
    Modal Interpretations of Quantum Mechanics.Olimpia Lombardi & Dennis Dieks - forthcoming - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
  4.  68
    Identical Quantum Particles and Weak Discernibility.Dennis Dieks & Marijn A. M. Versteegh - 2008 - Foundations of Physics 38 (10):923-934.
    Saunders has recently claimed that “identical quantum particles” with an anti-symmetric state (fermions) are weakly discernible objects, just like irreflexively related ordinary objects in situations with perfect symmetry (Black’s spheres, for example). Weakly discernible objects have all their qualitative properties in common but nevertheless differ from each other by virtue of (a generalized version of) Leibniz’s principle, since they stand in relations an entity cannot have to itself. This notion of weak discernibility has been criticized as question begging, but we (...)
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  5.  9
    EPSA11 Perspectives and Foundational Problems in Philosophy of Science.Vassilios Karakostas & Dennis Dieks (eds.) - 2013 - Springer.
    This book contains a selection of original conference papers covering all major fields in the philosophy of science, that have been organized into themes.
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  6.  10
    Quantum Mechanics and Perspectivalism.Dennis Dieks - unknown
    Experimental evidence of the last decades has made the status of ``collapses of the wave function'' even more shaky than it already was on conceptual grounds: interference effects turn out to be detectable even when collapses are typically expected to occur. Non-collapse interpretations should consequently be taken seriously. In this paper we argue that such interpretations suggest a perspectivalism according to which quantum objects are not characterized by monadic properties, but by relations to other systems. Accordingly, physical systems may possess (...)
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  7. Reasoning About the Future: Doom and Beauty.Dennis Dieks - 2007 - Synthese 156 (3):427-439.
    According to the Doomsday Argument we have to rethink the probabilities we assign to a soon or not so soon extinction of mankind when we realize that we are living now, rather early in the history of mankind. Sleeping Beauty finds herself in a similar predicament: on learning the date of her first awakening, she is asked to re-evaluate the probabilities of her two possible future scenarios. In connection with Doom, I argue that it is wrong to assume that our (...)
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  8. Another Look at Empirical Equivalence and Underdetermination of Theory Choice.Pablo Acuña & Dennis Dieks - 2014 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 4 (2):153-180.
    In 1991 Larry Laudan and Jarret Leplin proposed a solution for the problem of empirical equivalence and the empirical underdetermination that is often thought to result from it. In this paper we argue that, even though Laudan and Leplin’s reasoning is essentially correct, their solution should be accurately assessed in order to appreciate its nature and scope. Indeed, Laudan and Leplin’s analysis does not succeed in completely removing the problem or, as they put it, in refuting the thesis of underdetermination (...)
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  9.  17
    The Modal Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics and its Generalization to Density Operators.Pieter E. Vermaas & Dennis Dieks - 1995 - Foundations of Physics 25 (1):145-158.
    We generalize the modal interpretation of quantum mechanics so that it may be applied to composite systems represented by arbitrary density operators. We discuss the interpretation these density operators receive and relate this to the discussion about the interpretation of proper and improper mixtures in the standard interpretation.
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  10.  74
    Quantum Mechanics, Chance and Modality.Dennis Dieks - 2010 - Philosophica 83 (1):117-137.
  11. The Modal Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics.Dennis Dieks & Pieter Vermaas - 1998 - Kluwer Academic Publishers.
     
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  12.  62
    How Classical Particles Emerge From the Quantum World.Dennis Dieks & Andrea Lubberdink - 2011 - Foundations of Physics 41 (6):1051-1064.
    The symmetrization postulates of quantum mechanics (symmetry for bosons, antisymmetry for fermions) are usually taken to entail that quantum particles of the same kind (e.g., electrons) are all in exactly the same state and therefore indistinguishable in the strongest possible sense. These symmetrization postulates possess a general validity that survives the classical limit, and the conclusion seems therefore unavoidable that even classical particles of the same kind must all be in the same state—in clear conflict with what we know about (...)
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  13. Another Look at General Covariance and the Equivalence of Reference Frames.Dennis Dieks - 2005 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 37 (1):174-191.
    In his general theory of relativity (GR) Einstein sought to generalize the special-relativistic equivalence of inertial frames to a principle according to which all frames of reference are equivalent. He claimed to have achieved this aim through the general covariance of the equations of GR. There is broad consensus among philosophers of relativity that Einstein was mistaken in this. That equations can be made to look the same in different frames certainly does not imply in general that such frames are (...)
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  14.  97
    Probability in Modal Interpretations of Quantum Mechanics.Dennis Dieks - 2007 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 38 (2):292-310.
    Modal interpretations have the ambition to construe quantum mechanics as an objective, man-independent description of physical reality. Their second leading idea is probabilism: quantum mechanics does not completely fix physical reality but yields probabilities. In working out these ideas an important motif is to stay close to the standard formalism of quantum mechanics and to refrain from introducing new structure by hand. In this paper we explain how this programme can be made concrete. In particular, we show that the Born (...)
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  15.  5
    Von Neumann’s Impossibility Proof: Mathematics in the Service of Rhetorics.Dennis Dieks - 2017 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 60:136-148.
    According to what has become a standard history of quantum mechanics, von Neumann in 1932 succeeded in convincing the physics community that he had proved that hidden variables were impossible as a matter of principle. Subsequently, leading proponents of the Copenhagen interpretation emphatically confirmed that von Neumann's proof showed the completeness of quantum mechanics. Then, the story continues, Bell in 1966 finally exposed the proof as seriously and obviously wrong; this rehabilitated hidden variables and made serious foundational research possible. It (...)
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  16.  38
    A Perspectival Version of the Modal Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics and the Origin of Macroscopic Behavior.Gyula Bene & Dennis Dieks - 2001 - Foundations of Physics 32 (5):645-671.
    We study the process of observation (measurement), within the framework of a “perspectival” (“relational,” “relative state”) version of the modal interpretation of quantum mechanics. We show that if we assume certain features of discreteness and determinism in the operation of the measuring device (which could be a part of the observer's nerve system), this gives rise to classical characteristics of the observed properties, in the first place to spatial localization. We investigate to what extent semi-classical behavior of the object system (...)
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  17. Becoming, Relativity and Locality.Dennis Dieks - unknown
    It is a central aspect of our ordinary concept of time that history unfolds and events come into being. It is only natural to take this seriously. However, it is notoriously difficult to explain further what this `becoming' consists in, or even to show that the notion is consistent at all. In this article I first argue that the idea of a global temporal ordering, involving a succession of cosmic nows, is not indispensable for our concept of time. Our experience (...)
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  18.  29
    Reichenbach’s Transcendental Probability.Fedde Benedictus & Dennis Dieks - 2015 - Erkenntnis 80 (1):15-38.
    The aim of this article is twofold. First, we shall review and analyse the neo-kantian justification for the application of probabilistic concepts in science that was defended by Hans Reichenbach early in his career, notably in his dissertation of 1916. At first sight this kantian approach seems to contrast sharply with Reichenbach’s later logical positivist, frequentist viewpoint. But, and this is our second goal, we shall attempt to show that there is an underlying continuity in Reichenbach’s thought: typical features of (...)
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  19.  89
    The Ontology of Spacetime.Dennis Geert Bernardus Johan Dieks (ed.) - 2006 - Elsevier.
    This book contains selected papers from the First International Conference on the Ontology of Spacetime. Its fourteen chapters address two main questions: first, what is the current status of the substantivalism/relationalism debate, and second, what about the prospects of presentism and becoming within present-day physics and its philosophy? The overall tenor of the four chapters of the book’s first part is that the prospects of spacetime substantivalism are bleak, although different possible positions remain with respect to the ontological status of (...)
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  20.  62
    Reduction and Understanding.Dennis Dieks & Henk W. de Regt - 1998 - Foundations of Science 3 (1):45-59.
    Reductionism, in the sense of the doctrine that theories on different levels of reality should exhibit strict and general relations of deducibility, faces well-known difficulties. Nevertheless, the idea that deeper layers of reality are responsible for what happens at higher levels is well-entrenched in scientific practice. We argue that the intuition behind this idea is adequately captured by the notion of supervenience: the physical state of the fundamental physical layers fixes the states of the higher levels. Supervenience is weaker than (...)
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  21.  45
    Doomsday--Or: The Dangers of Statistics.Dennis Dieks - 1992 - Philosophical Quarterly 42 (166):78-84.
  22.  57
    The Present Situation in the Philosophy of Science.Thomas Uebel, Stephan Hartmann, Wenceslao Gonzalez, Marcel Weber, Dennis Dieks & Friedrich Stadler (eds.) - 2010 - Springer.
    This volume is a serious attempt to open up the subject of European philosophy of science to real thought, and provide the structural basis for the ...
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  23.  13
    The Gibbs Paradox and the Distinguishability of Identical Particles.Marijn A. M. Versteegh & Dennis Dieks - unknown
    Classical particles of the same kind are distinguishable: they can be labeled by their positions and follow different trajectories. This distinguishability affects the number of ways W a macrostate can be realized on the micro-level, and via S=k ln W this leads to a non-extensive expression for the entropy. This result is generally considered wrong because of its inconsistency with thermodynamics. It is sometimes concluded from this inconsistency, notoriously illustrated by the Gibbs paradox, that identical particles must be treated as (...)
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  24. Space-Time Relationism in Newtonian and Relativistic Physics.Dennis Dieks - 2000 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 15 (1):5 – 17.
    I argue that there is natural relationist interpretation of Newtonian and relativistic non-quantum physics. Although relationist, this interpretation does not fall prey to the traditional objections based on the existence of inertial effects.
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  25.  4
    Probability in Modal Interpretations of Quantum Mechanics.Dennis Dieks - 2007 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 38 (2):292-310.
    Modal interpretations have the ambition to construe quantum mechanics as an objective, man-independent description of physical reality. Their second leading idea is probabilism: quantum mechanics does not completely fix physical reality but yields probabilities. In working out these ideas an important motif is to stay close to the standard formalism of quantum mechanics and to refrain from introducing new structure by hand. In this paper we explain how this programme can be made concrete. In particular, we show that the Born (...)
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  26.  61
    Quantum Statistics, Identical Particles and Correlations.Dennis Dieks - 1990 - Synthese 82 (1):127 - 155.
    It is argued that the symmetry and anti-symmetry of the wave functions of systems consisting of identical particles have nothing to do with the observational indistinguishability of these particles. Rather, a much stronger conceptual indistinguishability is at the bottom of the symmetry requirements. This can be used to argue further, in analogy to old arguments of De Broglie and Schrödinger, that the reality described by quantum mechanics has a wave-like rather than particle-like structure. The question of whether quantum statistics alone (...)
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  27.  20
    Quantum Mechanics: An Intelligible Description of Objective Reality? [REVIEW]Dennis Dieks - 2005 - Foundations of Physics 35 (3):399-415.
    Jim Cushing emphasized that physical theory should tell us an intelligible and objective story about the world, and concluded that the Bohm theory is to be preferred over the Copenhagen interpretation. We argue here, however, that the Bohm theory is only one member of a wider class of interpretations that can be said to fulfill Cushing’s desiderata. We discuss how the pictures provided by these interpretations differ from the classical one. In particular, it seems that a rather drastic form of (...)
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  28. E. W. Beth as a Philosopher of Physics.Dennis Dieks - 2011 - Synthese 179 (2):271-284.
    This paper examines E. W. Beth's work in the philosophy of physics, both from a historical and a systematic point of view. Beth saw the philosophy of physics first of all as an opportunity to illustrate and promulgate a new and modern general approach to the philosophy of nature and to philosophy tout court: an approach characterized negatively by its rejection of all traditional metaphysics and positively by its firm orientation towards science. Beth was successful in defending this new ideology, (...)
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  29.  16
    Are 'Identical Quantum Particles' Weakly Discernible Objects?Dennis Dieks - 2010 - In Mauricio Suarez, Mauro Dorato & Miklos Redei (eds.), EPSA Philosophical Issues in the Sciences · Launch of the European Philosophy of Science Association. Springer. pp. 21--30.
  30.  52
    Reichenbach and the Conventionality of Distant Simultaneity in Perspective.Dennis Dieks - 2009 - In Thomas Uebel, Stephan Hartmann, Wenceslao Gonzalez, Marcel Weber, Dennis Dieks & Friedrich Stadler (eds.), The Present Situation in the Philosophy of Science. Springer. pp. 315--333.
    We take another look at Reichenbach’s 1920 conversion to conventionalism, with a special eye to the background of his ‘conventionality of distant simultaneity’ thesis. We argue that elements of Reichenbach earlier neo-Kantianism can still be discerned in his later work and, related to this, that his conventionalism should be seen as situated at the level of global theory choice. This is contrary to many of Reichenbach’s own statements, in which he declares that his conventionalism is a consequence of the arbitrariness (...)
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  31.  3
    Space and Time in Particle and Field Physics.Dennis Dieks - 2001 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 32 (2):217-241.
  32.  6
    Particles in a Quantum Ontology of Properties.Olimpia Lombardi & Dennis Dieks - unknown
    We propose a new quantum ontology, in which properties are the fundamental building blocks. In this property ontology physical systems are defined as bundles of type-properties. Not all elements of such bundles are associated with definite case-properties, and this accommodates the Kochen and Specker theorem and contextuality. Moreover, we do not attribute an identity to the type-properties, which gives rise to a novel form of the bundle theory. There are no “particles” in the sense of classical individuals in this ontology, (...)
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  33.  19
    Forty Years of String Theory Reflecting on the Foundations.Sebastian de Haro, Dennis Dieks, Gerard ’T. Hooft & Erik Verlinde - 2013 - Foundations of Physics 43 (1):1-7.
  34.  98
    Objectivity in Perspective: Relationism in the Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics. [REVIEW]Dennis Dieks - 2009 - Foundations of Physics 39 (7):760-775.
    Pekka Lahti is a prominent exponent of the renaissance of foundational studies in quantum mechanics that has taken place during the last few decades. Among other things, he and coworkers have drawn renewed attention to, and have analyzed with fresh mathematical rigor, the threat of inconsistency at the basis of quantum theory: ordinary measurement interactions, described within the mathematical formalism by Schrödinger-type equations of motion, seem to be unable to lead to the occurrence of definite measurement outcomes, whereas the same (...)
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  35. Book Review: Foundations of Quantum Mechanics, an Empiricist Approach. By Willem M. De Muynck. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht/Boston/London, 2002, Xxiv+680 Pp., $219.00 (Hardcover). ISBN 1-4020-0932-1. [REVIEW]Dennis Dieks - 2003 - Foundations of Physics 33 (6):1003-1006.
  36.  89
    The Logic of Identity: Distinguishability and Indistinguishability in Classical and Quantum Physics.Dennis Dieks - 2014 - Foundations of Physics 44 (12):1302-1316.
    The suggestion that particles of the same kind may be indistinguishable in a fundamental sense, even so that challenges to traditional notions of individuality and identity may arise, has first come up in the context of classical statistical mechanics. In particular, the Gibbs paradox has sometimes been interpreted as a sign of the untenability of the classical concept of a particle and as a premonition that quantum theory is needed. This idea of a ‘quantum connection’ stubbornly persists in the literature, (...)
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  37.  69
    The Adolescence of Relativity: Einstein, Minkowski, and the Philosophy of Space and Time.Dennis Dieks - unknown
    An often repeated account of the genesis of special relativity tells us that relativity theory was to a considerable extent the fruit of an operationalist philosophy of science. Indeed, Einstein’s 1905 paper stresses the importance of rods and clocks for giving concrete physical content to spatial and temporal notions. I argue, however, that it would be a mistake to read too much into this. Einstein’s operationalist remarks should be seen as serving rhetoric purposes rather than as attempts to promulgate a (...)
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  38.  87
    On Some Alleged Difficulties in the Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics.Dennis Dieks - 1991 - Synthese 86 (1):77 - 86.
  39.  14
    Weak Discernibility and the Identity of Spacetime Points.Dennis Dieks - 2010 - In Giovanni Macchia, Francesco Orilia & Vincenzo Fano (eds.), Space and Time: A Priori and a Posteriori Studies. De Gruyter. pp. 43-62.
    In this article we investigate putative counterexamples to Leibniz’s principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles. In particular, we look at the status of spacetime points: although these all possess exactly the same properties in symmetrical spacetimes and thus seem indiscernible, there are certainly more than one of them. However, we shall defend Leibniz’s principle, even for such highly symmetrical cases. Part of our strategy will be to invoke the notion of “weak discernibility”, as proposed in the recent literature. Weakly discernible (...)
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  40.  67
    Preface Special Issue Foundations of Physics.Dennis Dieks, Décio Krause & Christian de Ronde - 2014 - Foundations of Physics 44 (12):1245-1245.
    The foundations of quantum mechanics are attracting new and significant interest in the scientific community due to the recent striking experimental and technical progress in the fields of quantum computation, quantum teleportation and quantum information processing. However, at a more fundamental level the understanding and manipulation of these novel phenomena require not only new laboratory techniques but also new understanding, development and interpretation of the formalism of quantum mechanics itself, a mathematical structure whose connection to what happens in physical reality (...)
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  41.  86
    The “Reality” of the Lorentz Contraction.Dennis Dieks - 1984 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 15 (2):330-342.
    Summary A recurrent theme in the philosophical literature on the special theory of relativity is the question as to the reality of the Lorentz contraction. It is often suggested that there is a difference between the Lorentz-FitzGerald contraction in the pre-relativistic ether theory and the Lorentz contraction from special relativity in the sense that the former is a real contraction of matter conditioned by dynamical laws, whereas the latter should be compared with the apparent changes in the size of objects (...)
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  42.  51
    Physical and Philosophical Perspectives on Probability, Explanation and Time (Workshop of the ESF Programme "The Philosophy of Science in a European Perspective", Utrecht University, 19–20 October 2009). [REVIEW]Dennis Dieks - 2010 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 41 (2):383 - 388.
  43.  3
    Another Look at General Covariance and the Equivalence of Reference Frames.Dennis Dieks - 2006 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 37 (1):174-191.
    In his general theory of relativity Einstein sought to generalize the special-relativistic equivalence of inertial frames to a principle according to which all frames of reference are equivalent. He claimed to have achieved this aim through the general covariance of the equations of GR. There is broad consensus among philosophers of relativity that Einstein was mistaken in this. That equations can be made to look the same in different frames certainly does not imply in general that such frames are physically (...)
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  44.  27
    Events and Covariance in the Interpretation of Quantum Field Theory.Dennis Dieks - unknown
    In relativistic quantum field theory the notion of a local operation is regarded as basic: each open space-time region is associated with an algebra of observables representing possible measurements performed within this region. It is much more difficult to accommodate the notions of events taking place in such regions or of localized objects. But how can the notion of a local operation be basic in the theory if this same theory would not be able to represent localized measuring devices and (...)
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  45.  88
    Complementarity in the Bohr-Einstein Photon Box.Dennis Dieks & Sander Lam - unknown
    The photon box thought experiment can be considered a forerunner of the EPR-experiment: by performing suitable measurements on the box it is possible to ``prepare'' the photon, long after it has escaped, in either of two complementary states. Consistency requires that the corresponding box measurements be complementary as well. At first sight it seems, however, that these measurements can be jointly performed with arbitrary precision: they pertain to different systems (the center of mass of the box and an internal clock, (...)
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  46.  39
    The Gibbs Paradox Revisited.Dennis Dieks - 2011 - In Dennis Dieks, Wenceslao Gonzalo, Thomas Uebel, Stephan Hartmann & Marcel Weber (eds.), Explanation, Prediction, and Confirmation. Springer. pp. 367--377.
  47.  58
    Quantum Mechanics and Much More.Dennis Dieks - 2011 - Metascience 20 (1):99-101.
  48.  4
    Quantum Information and Locality.Dennis Dieks - unknown
    The surprising aspects of quantum information are due to two distinctly non-classical features of the quantum world: first, different quantum states need not be orthogonal and, second, quantum states may be entangled. Non-orthogonality leads to the blurring of classical distinctions. On the other hand, entanglement leads via non-locality to teleportation and other ``entanglement-assisted'' forms of communication that go beyond what is classically possible. In this article we attempt to understand these new possibilities via an analysis of the significance of entanglement (...)
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  49.  32
    Pekka Johannes Lahti—60th Birthday.Paul Busch, Dennis Dieks & Gerardus ’T. Hooft - 2009 - Foundations of Physics 39 (6):519-520.
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  50.  39
    Quantum Mechanics and Experience.Dennis Dieks - 1993 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 24 (5):867-870.
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